Why Do We Go?

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A few years ago my daughter was preparing to go on a mission trip with me to Mexico.  To help raise funds she started a hand made candle business and sold her candles at local farmers markets.  The project went well and she raised her goal.  But an interesting thing happened.  There were very many “naysayers” who took offense.  Instead of seeing a teenager who had a heart beyond herself, willing to work to raise money, and take initiative; they wanted to ask an age old question that critical hearts love to ask:  “Why don’t you focus on doing good here where you live?  Why do you have to go out of the country?”

There are three main issues I have with this line of thinking. First, here we are, almost 2,000 years after the Book of Acts was recorded, and people still don’t understand the Great Commission. Jesus made it clear we are supposed to “go into all the world.”  This is a mandate; not a suggestion. It is God’s will from the beginning that heaven will be composed of every tongue, tribe, and nation.  And that means we need to reach every tongue, tribe, and nation with the Gospel.  And the only way that’s going to happen is if we GO. 

One of the only things holding Jesus back from rapturing the church is that there are still people on earth that have never heard the Gospel.  Before Christ will come back the Gospel must be preached to every person.  This is imperative. 

Second, this line of thinking implies that the church is not doing anything locally.  Our church like so many others is highly engaged in our community.  At our church in Cloverdale, Indiana we are in hospitals, jails, prisons, nursing homes, schools, businesses, and social gatherings each and every week.  We are working with the poor, reaching the lost, discipling the saints, and making our communities much better places to live.  The fact is that churches ARE doing huge things in local communities.  The question I would ask the person with the critical heart—what are YOU doing in your community?  When is the last time you served, donated, or went above and beyond what was convenient for you?

And lastly, that line of thinking reveals a heart that lacks compassion.  If someone has never been outside of the United States, they may have no idea just how bad things can be in third world nations.  In the USA we do have poverty and struggling people.  But the degree of struggle in third world nations is more than 1000 times greater than what we experience here.  And without hearing the Gospel a soul has no hope beyond this world.  In the United States we have churches on every corner.  Our citizens have had multiple opportunities every day to hear the Gospel if they would choose.  But it is not like that in the rest of the world.  In many places we go we are the first group to bring the Gospel to that region or the first in a very long time.  This preaching of the Gospel is what enables someone to hear and respond and have their life changed for eternity. Ultimately, we have a Great Commission from Christ to take the Gospel locally and abroad.  And for the rest of my life I am committed to do just that.  Please add your faith to mine that Matt Nichols Ministries will see millions of souls come into the Kingdom of God over the next decade.