Day Five: Their Ministry
"Let’s keep our theology straight here. God never asked us to go out and improve society. He never asked us to make the world such a wonderful place that He can come and set up His kingdom here. What He did ask us to do was to give His gospel to every creature for a witness. The magnitude of our task is simply that we present to every living man and woman a viable option, which he can understand, which is translated into the medium of his intelligence in a way that he knows what he is accepting or giving up. This is our mission.” J. Philip Hogan
Not mine, but ours. Not I, but we.
Missionaries are called to go cross-culturally to see God’s redemptive purpose fulfilled. This calling represents a wide scope of roles: evangelists, church planters, support ministries, teachers, construction workers, translators, compassion ministries, discipleship, pilots, rescuing trafficking victims, media, technology, etc.
It is the body of Christ mobilizing and working together for “God’s name glorified, God’s Kingdom established, and the world reconciled to Himself (Blackaby and Willis, 1990).”
As missionaries dedicate themselves to minister in their God-given roles, here are ways you can pray for their ministry work:
Gospel Message Pray for open doors to declare the mystery of Christ clearly (Colossians 4), and for God’s Word to bring forth fruit.
Love Pray that the love for both Christ and for the lost that first motivated the missionary toward obedience to the call will remain fervent, or be rekindled. It is a high and holy love!
Humility The irony of being a humble missionary is that he or she has to constantly talk about themselves in newsletters and updates, or in services to raise funds. “Here’s what we’ve done! Here’s what we’re going to do!” Pray for the humility, meekness, and gentleness of Christ to mark the missionary’s actions and communications.
Anointing Missionaries are not strong enough on their own. On days when stress, exhaustion, challenges, and/or discouragement weigh heavily, they are glad to merely survive through the day. Pray for a supernatural touch from God to revive and strengthen them. Faithful is He who calls!
Building Trust This is more important than accomplishments but also takes longer. Further, it is a discreet work without public fanfare. Pray for the missionary to follow Christ’s relational example with his disciples and focus on building trust with the nationals and among his peers, versus the need to perform – even when pressured by supporters for quicker results.
Staying Focused According to author Sherwood Lingenfelter (Leading Cross-Culturally), one of the first things lost in multicultural teamwork is a focus on mission and vision; being preoccupied with goals, or having pressures of funding and time, causes the missionary to lose perspective. Pray that the missionary regains perspective via giving “repeated attention to the mission, the vision, and the values that are essential to kingdom work (Lingenfelter).”
Almighty God, I pray for open doors for your Gospel to be proclaimed clearly through the ministry to which you have called _________________. May your high and holy love continually motivate them, and may Christ’s meekness and gentleness mark their life and ministry. Holy Spirit, anoint them for the task at hand, reviving and strengthening _________________ with your power. Please keep them from seeking accomplishments and performance in place of building trust with whom they work. Moreover, I pray that the kingdom vision and partnership would actively remain their focus rather than losing perspective for other reasons. Bless the work of their hands as they faithfully fulfill your great commission. In Christ, Amen.”
Seven Ways in Seven Days – How to Pray Practically for Missionaries Series:
Day 1 Missionary Marriage
Day 2 MKs
Day 4 Their Personal Life
Day 5: Their Ministry
Day 6: Relationships/Conflicts