I have heard people time and time again talk about how only a few people are called to be missionaries, and they just aren’t one of the few! I believe there is some truth to this. Not everyone is called away to permanently serve overseas, but we are all called to missions in different ways.
“Go and make disciples of every nation, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit and teaching them to obey all that I’ve commanded. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” –Matthew 18:19-20
The key word in the verse above is “go.” That means we can’t stay exactly where we are. Now, the verse doesn’t say how far to “go.” So how do we develop a heart for missions so we can follow in obedience to God’s call — wherever the call may take us? We all have to start somewhere, and sometimes that is “going” right next door and sharing a cup of coffee with a neighbor you’ve never met. Sometimes it’s sitting across the table with a new couple who recently moved into your town and doesn’t know the Gospel. God calls us to serve where we live, work, and play. But other times, God calls us farther away. We are unlikely to say “yes” to God’s call to serve elsewhere if we don’t learn how to serve right where we are. If we can’t love those in our own communities, how we can love others around the world? The good news is that God is everywhere and loves everyone. So no matter where we are, we can follow His example of love! We can serve God in our normal, ordinary lives or in the great unknown. The word missionary means “someone on a mission.” There is no defined place or distance that qualifies someone as a missionary. God didn’t put boundaries on where we can serve, and one day, He may call you to an uncomfortable place with unfamiliar people.

Will you go?

We were sent from the moment we were placed on this earth to help grow the kingdom of God! Wherever we go with the Lord is Holy Ground. Start serving at the place beneath your feet and then step outside your designated borders and go to anyone who needs to hear of God’s grace. If you want to develop a heart for missions…start where you are! As you learn to love those who are close, your heart will expand and stretch to wherever God calls — near or far.