:: 02/09/2016 - 8:56am :: Read more...

As I waited for the waiter (how ironic is that), my mind traveled back several hours to an assignment given in one of my classes. The professor wanted us to share the gospel with 5 people during the semester. I had already decided on the 5 lucky winners who would receive my gospel presentation, but here I was about to share the gospel with a perfect stranger who hadn’t made the list.

I suddenly realized that perhaps God had a list and it trumped my plans. I was going to have to revisit that list and eat some humble pie as soon as I finished this hot fudge cake and a conversation with my waiter.

As the young man approached my table, I did exactly what I had agreed with God I’d do: I opened my mouth. Truly, I was going to be as surprised as he was with what I was about to say, because I didn’t have a clue. Knowing God was providing the words, I was hoping for something profound and theological. I quickly blurted out, “You seem like a nice young man. Are you a Christian?”

“No,” he replied, “but I’d like to be.”

Author and speaker Kimberly Sowell calls women to live beyond themselves and surrender their lives fully to Christ.

:: 02/04/2016 - 12:32pm :: Read more...

As a believer, I know that I ought to be telling others about Jesus. Yet I find myself thinking of it as a complex endeavor for which special training is needed.

Although it isn’t complicated, it is a good idea to make preparations by learning pertinent verses, putting our testimony into words, and praying for guidance.

Actually there are numerous ways to share Jesus with others. The following are but 3 of them:

  • A believer can simply relate the details of how she came to ask Jesus into her heart.
  • She can use the “Romans Road” to salvation: Romans 3:23; 6:23; 5:8; 10:13; 10:9–10. These verses are frequently quoted in Christian settings, which makes memorizing them easier.
  • She can ask the other person 3 questions; the answers to which indicate where that person is spiritually. In order, the questions are “Who was Jesus?,” “What did He do?,” and “Why does it matter?” These questions direct the conversation in such a way as to create an opportunity to tell the other person about Jesus and His love, grace, and forgiveness.

Leigh Pritchett lives in the southeastern United States, a missions field that is “white unto harvest.”

:: 02/01/2016 - 4:53pm :: Read more...

For me, it was really just about the hot fudge cake. After sitting through classes all afternoon and studying in the library well into the evening, my brain was tired. I slumped in the booth at my favorite diner, finishing my pasta bowl while dreaming of a hard-earned hot fudge cake topped with a scoop of vanilla, when all of a sudden God started interrupting my thoughts.

“God, You want me to witness to my waiter? That can’t be right. He’s a teenage boy; how could he possibly relate to anything I would say? And the other customers—dare I be so rude to tie up too much of his time and risk getting him in trouble with his manager?” Of course, there was also the little matter of having absolutely nothing intelligent to say. But God kept pressing.

I made an agreement with God. Since I had no idea how to start this conversation, I acknowledged God could put His words into my mouth (Jer. 1:9). “God, when the waiter comes back, I’m going to open my mouth, and whatever comes out has to come from You.” Then I waited and prayed. And nibbled on hot fudge cake.

Author and speaker Kimberly Sowell calls women to live beyond themselves and surrender their lives fully to Christ.

:: 01/28/2016 - 10:44am :: Read more...

Our fast-paced society leaves us with little time to devote to missions. If we are not careful, then we schedule all our time doing “good” things and often overlook the “best” things God has for us.

Here are a few tips to help you make room on your calendar for missions:

  • Look at responsibilities for which you have volunteered. Decide which ones are in line with what you believe God has called you to do in your life.
  • Determine the time frames for these current responsibilities. If there is a specific end date to fulfill a responsibility, do your best to make it through that time so you can complete your commitment. If it is an activity that has no specific end time and is not aligned with what you believe God has called you to do, eliminate it from your schedule.
  • When asked to take on another commitment, spend a lot of time in prayer and consideration so that you do not automatically take on something else that will distract you from God’s purposes for your life.

With just a little planning and a lot of prayer, you can make time to be involved in missions.

Jennifer Booth writes from her home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Connect with her on her blog at JenniferBooth.com.

:: 01/26/2016 - 10:19am :: Read more...

On a personal level, I’ve been examining my missions vision. God has given me an overall vision of being involved in missions ever since I accepted His gift of salvation as a child. Yet the specific vision has changed as I’ve gone through life stages. Can you relate?

I have participated in missions trips at home and abroad. Several good friends serve as missionaries with either the North American Mission Board or the International Mission Board, personalizing missions to me. I have been involved in missions education and served as president of Mississippi WMU.

My specific vision now is, on the one hand, to be willing to serve Him wherever He calls, yet on the other hand, I believe that I’m to be a missions encourager. An encourager to my church to share the wide vision with them. An encourager to smaller churches around me in my association and state to participate in missions as fully as they can.

Could you take some time to discover the missions vision God has for you? He may want to give you a fresh vision for this New Year. All you have to do is ask.

Sharon R. Neff lives in Arcola, Mississippi, and never had a vision that she would be a pastor’s wife.

:: 01/21/2016 - 9:28am :: Read more...

I have been privileged to lead Girls in Action® in my church for more than 13 years. I have taught first-, second-, third-, and sixth-grade girls.

Through all these years of teaching, the missionaries we have studied have inspired me, too. It is not just the girls who learn about missions during our class time.

I am excited that we have several young mothers who are leading in GA® this year. My missions vision is to not only teach my third-graders but also encourage these young teachers.

You see, the more these teachers learn, the more they are going to want to know, give, and go. They can’t help but be inspired to become involved in missions and go forward just as the girls are learning to do.

As a result of these young women sacrificing time to teach GA, they are laying the foundation for teaching their own children about missions.

I can’t wait to see the impact these moms are going to have in our church and around the world because of their excitement about missions!

Jennifer Booth writes from her home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Connect with her on her blog at JenniferBooth.com.

:: 01/18/2016 - 11:37am :: Read more...

How do you introduce a broader vision of missions into a church where many members truly don’t understand missions?

I teach Sunday School and many lessons lend themselves to sharing missionary stories from my WMU connections. We have had friends who serve with the International Mission Board come to speak and share videos of their work. This past December, we began introducing the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering® for International Missions to the congregation.

I am part of a women’s group that I am slowly trying to transition from a mind-set of local missions to national and worldwide missions. We are doing Bible studies that I am salting with missionary stories as much as possible. It would be wonderful to begin a new Women on Mission® group. I am praying we would have some women who would be interested in that or we could work toward beginning an Adults on MissionSM group.

This experience is teaching me that it’s not always an easy or rapid process to encourage people to embrace your vision as their own. It takes patience, prayer, and more patience!

Sharon R. Neff lives in Arcola, Mississippi, and never had a vision that she would be a pastor’s wife.

:: 01/14/2016 - 10:17am :: Read more...

Our church held a missions conference this past October. We hosted several missionaries from our state and nation and around the world. Church members were able to interact with missionaries on a more personal level.

The goal of this conference was to encourage church members to commit to a new level of missions involvement.

For some, that meant they would start praying for missions. Others were challenged to give to missions. Still others committed to support those who wanted to go on missions trips. And many committed to actually go on a missions trip.

The most exciting result of the conference was the 3 members who dedicated their lives to full-time Christian service.

Because of this conference, our church has developed a greater vision for reaching the lost. Many more are now involved in missions and are doing their part to spread the gospel message.

Jennifer Booth writes from her home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Connect with her on her blog at JenniferBooth.com.

:: 01/11/2016 - 1:47pm :: Read more...

A vision gives direction and motivation. Without a vision, I can flounder around, aimlessly wandering from one interesting thing to another. Without a vision, a church can have worship services and programs, keeping members busy but unclear about the future.

Our church is rather unique. We are a small, new Southern Baptist church and a declining, but established, Methodist church meeting together as a community church. My Baptist pastor husband had a vision for a church in an area where the declining population was unable to support several pastors but different denominations could worship together. Both the Baptist church and the Methodist church retain their forms of governance, yet we come together in everything else. My husband preaches solid Bible sermons each Sunday in a traditional service.

Currently the missions vision of the church is local. We support a variety of local missions causes, everything from a food pantry to a residential ministry for recovering addicts. This is good, but we are being nudged to expand that vision. How will that look?

Sharon R. Neff lives in Arcola, Mississippi, and never had a vision that she would be a pastor’s wife.

:: 01/07/2016 - 9:56am :: Read more...

As a parent, I’ve always strived to teach my children about missions and involve them in mission action whenever possible. My children are now 16 and 13 and grew up in Girls in Action® and Royal Ambassadors®. They know what it means to be on mission.

My vision for them is to continue being on mission every day of their lives. There are many opportunities with our church and their school to continue to develop this mind-set.

I plan to encourage them to be involved in missions by having them participate with me, helping them find ways they can do missions, and educating them about current events so they can brainstorm ways they can be on mission.

It’s up to us to cultivate a vision to encourage and teach the next generation to live a missions lifestyle that honors God.

Jennifer Booth writes from her home in Little Rock, Arkansas. Connect with her on her blog at JenniferBooth.com.

view counter
view counter
view counter