Faith

The Faith Still Stands

My friends Diana and John Lewis served faithfully as your North American Mission Board (NAMB) missionaries. John was a palliative care chaplain. Diana served as a church and community ministries missionary. They were featured week of prayer missionaries in the spring of 2007. Diana remembers vividly the very day millions prayed for them. John had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Hospital tests on that day would reveal the extensive cancer that would take John’s life three short months later.

The Best Mother’s Day Gift

Mother's Day

If you’re a mom, you might wonder why every day can’t be Mother’s Day. Being a parent is tough work, no matter what that looks like for you. Unfortunately, there is only one day allotted on the calendar to celebrate moms, but we have to be a mom those other 364 days, too.

Have you ever considered motherhood as a missions field? It’s messy, filled with long days and daunting tasks. There are some really high points, like the first time you hold your newborn in your arms, and there are some really low points, like when your teenager argues with you for the 900th time.

As moms, we need to remind ourselves that we are on a missions field everywhere we go, modeling Christ for those little people who call us Mom.

This year, I will celebrate my very first Mother’s Day, so I am no expert. My son is almost one, and I know I have so much to learn as he grows up. It’s helpful knowing that I have a sacred job, a job that I do not take for granted.

Of my many jobs as a mom, the most important is to model Christ for my son and always point him to Christ.

All Things Big and Small

When I think of missions, my first thought is a big trip taken overseas. I think of going to Africa or Asia, eating strange new foods, forging new relationships and working hard, and meeting the needs of people who have never heard of Jesus.

Then I look around me and realize there are people right outside my front door who have never heard of Jesus. I realize that anywhere I am is a missions field if I’ll just let God use me as a missionary.

It’s hard to remember that we are called to be missionaries as soon as we accept Jesus into our hearts. It’s hard to be intentional about sharing His love with others as we go about our sometimes mundane day-to-day tasks.

We don’t have to pack a giant backpack and head to Africa in order to be missionaries. In fact, there are over 269 million lost people in North America, so we need to consider taking off our giant backpacks and reaching out to our many neighbors who are lost.

Share Your Faith

This month, we are encouraging students and their leaders to get out there and share their faith. But how do you prepare for something like that? How do you even begin to explain Who Jesus is and why He’s so important to you? The first step involves building relationships.

We’re not talking about making friends with ulterior motives here; the ultimate goal is certainly not to trick people into following Christ. When we say “building relationships” we mean just that.

Before we go any further, let’s take a moment to see how Jesus shared Himself with others.

Jesus met people where they were not where they should have been.

Throughout the gospel story, we read about Jesus eating meals with sinners like Zacchaeus and consoling confused religious scholars like Nicodemus. Jesus made a point to find his way into all levels of society, building relationships with people of all walks of life. Finding them wherever they were and valuing them as children of God.

Jesus offered friendship and hospitality with no strings attached.

Does Prayer Really Matter? Really?

We’ve all been there, haven’t we? You close your eyes, bow your head, and before a word crosses your lips you start to wonder, “Does this prayer really matter?” I mean, since when have words spoken in private ever changed global catastrophes like the war in Syria or the refugee crisis in Europe? Is prayer even all that important?

Oh, my friend, it is so important. When we pray, we’re really doing two things at the same time. We are (1) cultivating our relationship with God and (2) refining our own hearts in the process.

We pray out of a concern for others and with the faith that the One we pray to can actually hear us and cares about us. It’s an exercise in faith, plain and simple.

By voicing our hearts to God, we also underscore how important our words are. Sometimes we find that all we need is to sit in silence, at peace in the presence of a God beyond words.

Prayer is also the first step toward action. How many examples can we find in Scripture where someone wrestled with God in prayer over something they knew they had do? Honestly, more than I’d prefer to count . . .

Never Too Young to Tell Others

There are some things in life that are best left to adults. I’m thinking about things like driving a car, being an astronaut, performing surgery, or skydiving.

But, on the other hand, there are other areas in life where age really isn’t that important. An example? I’m thinking about evangelism—sharing our faith with others.

The Bible teaches us that sharing our faith is a vital part of fulfilling the Great Commission. When you check out Matthew 28, you will discover that there is no age requirement for sharing one’s faith. All of us are responsible.

So, what should we teach our children about sharing their faith? Here are few simple things to talk with them about.

First, we should encourage our children to invite their friends to church with them. This is probably the easiest way to introduce the subject of faith to others. Even the smallest child can ask a friend to come to church with them.

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