A missionary is one who receives God’ mission calling, understands it, marinates on it and then expresses it in his place of calling, whether at home or away. Today, as we begin to focus on mission, we look at how God works with us from the known to the unknown.
Abraham begins his journey of faith from the known to the unknown. He is an idolator, learning to worship as he engages in the worship of the many gods of UR of the Chaldeans. God calls him from this idolatry, to a journey of knowing the true. God hitherto unknown to him. The journey of the known to the unknown entails the following steps:-
Step 1: God put a “fear of God” consciousness into us albeit through an idolatrous or broken past. In this regard, god has a way of teaching us in the dark and redeeming our past. He uses everything in our dark past to instruct our hearts, and we only realize it when he begins to reveal it to us during the journey to the unknown.
Step 2: God allows weakness in us to teach us how to depend on Him in our journey with Him into the unknown. These weaknesses define us, strengthen us, but also remind us of our humanity and our place in dependence on Him.
Step 3: God develops our hope in Him by stretching us in long periods of unanswered prayer. During these stretches, faith is developed, tested and matured. Faith then ensures that our hope in God does not ware, but keeps getting stronger. “In hope we believed against hope....” [Romans 4: 18]
Step 4: God reveals the journey in small bits and manageable pieces in order to build our faith. He takes us on a cumulative journey that builds our faith using very specific building blocks. This helps us to look to Him rather than to our own strength or circumstances, “He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb [Romans 4: 19]
Step 5: God counters the toxic unbelief in our lives by providing proof of His faithfulness to us on a daily basis. This does not mean that He answers our prayers every day, but He causes His benevolence and protection to cover us everyday, even when we are lease aware of it.
This makes us take a strong stand against the world and refuse to waver, “no unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God”. [Romans 4: 20]. Faith in turn strengthens our capacity for missions, and we spread our faith through missions with greater conviction and clarity.