By Bill MacLeod
I recently heard an amazing quote made by Winston Churchill during the height of World War II when Great Britain was getting hammered by the Nazis. He said, “Sometimes it is not enough to do our best; sometimes we must do what is required.”
Having just experienced my 44th Easter Celebration as a follower of Jesus, the truth of this quote – that times and circumstances may often call us to do and go far beyond our “best” efforts – reminded me how Jesus Christ did what was required by going to the Cross, in our place, for our sins. To follow Him may require that you and I also go beyond doing our very best…necessitating a dependence upon the Lord to take us to places we could never have arrived at through our own best efforts.
A quick look at our world reveals what is being required of Jesus’ followers whether in North Korea, Iraq, Eritrea, Afghanistan, and other places. Open Doors’ World Watch List ranks the top 50 countries where Christians face the greatest persecution. Persecution occurs as authoritarian governments seek to control all religious thought and expression (as in Daniel 6:7-9); when there is hostility towards non-traditional and minority religious rights; and where there is just a lack of basic human rights. Missionaries being sent into these and other at-risk parts of the world also need our prayers and practical help.
1 Corinthians 12:26 says we are one body and that when one member suffers, we all suffer. When one member is lifted up, we all rejoice. Two upcoming, local opportunities will both help the Church to be unified, and better equipped to respond to these global opportunities:
- Care ConneXion on Saturday, April 9, will host Kathy Narramore, a former Missionary Kid and missions pastor, now serving as Missionary Member-Care Pastor for the Narramore Christian Foundation. Kathy will discuss “Creating a Circle of Care” outlining how churches can create effective cross-cultural ministry which thrives through a team’s investment. This training day is designed to help those in supporting churches develop teams to care for their missionaries.
- Prayer ConneXion on Friday and Saturday, May 13-14, is designed to address how strategic and intentional prayer can mobilize the Church to send out more missionaries. We will welcome two leaders in the area of global prayer-mobilization:
- Dick Eastman, is the international president of Every Home for Christ and the originator of the Change the World School of Prayer, a multi-part seminar that has trained more than 2,000,000 Christians in 120 nations on the power and intimacy of prayer.
- Dee Duke, has been the pastor of Jefferson Baptist Church in Jefferson, Oregon for 32 years where the Lord through his leadership has built a church of close to a thousand in a community of 2,200 people. They have also planted several daughter churches which Pastor Duke attributes to the emphasis upon prayer.
Yes, I believe it to be true that “Sometimes it is not enough to do our best; sometimes we must do what is required”. And I also believe that sometimes our proactive preparation can help us be ready to respond accordingly when that hour of requirement suddenly arrives. It is my hope that Mission ConneXion can continue to help prepare the Church in the Northwest to that end.