A number of years ago we took our young family on a missions trip to Mexico with a number of other people from our church in Essex Ontario. On the final day of this missions trip we had a day off so the team went to South Padre Island for a day of rest. It was beautiful day. I remember the sand dunes. The warmth of the sun. The waves of the ocean. It was a perfect sunny day…until something happened.
We lost our middle child Ben. He would have been six or seven at the time. I remember the panic I felt when we couldn’t find him. I remember scanning the water for any sign of him. I remember how many of us called his name but he had just disappeared. There was no trace of him. Gone! Had he been carried away by the waves? He was there one moment and then gone the next. Had he been abducted? Had he drowned? It seemed like forever had passed but eventually someone said “there he is” And sure enough there he was walking back to our group like everything was as it should be and nothing was wrong. Both Dale and I asked him where he had gone and that we were worried about him. He just looked at us and said in disgust, “I went to the bathroom. What did you want me to do, mess my pants?” You see Ben was lost but he didn’t know it.
How many people are like that in this world we live in? I recently heard a sermon at a Global workers conference where we heard the statistic that 3.1 billion people still have not heard about Jesus. That he loves them. That he has a plan for their lives to give them a future and a hope. They don’t know about redemption. I don’t know about you, but I found this number staggering and wondered how in this day and age that could be possible. And yet the fact is that there are still many unreached people groups in the world today. They are lost but they don’t realize it. Yes, even in Canada and the States. For example the refugees coming from war torn Syria. My heart breaks for these people who have lost everything. Family, friends, their homes and possessions, their culture and everything familiar and all they once held dear. Can you imagine not being able to go home because there is nothing to go back to? Do they know about the hope they can have in Him? That he loves them and cares about their brokenness and that he can bring wholeness to their lives? Who will be the ones to tell them?
How can people call on him for help if they have not yet believed? And how can they believe in one they’ve not yet heard of? And how can they hear the message of life if there’s no one there to proclaim it? Romans 10.14
While we were away one of the speakers we heard was Rob Ketterling. He spoke on this very thing. Going and sharing your faith. He gave practical examples. One of them that I remember was if he and his wife are out for dinner in a restaurant, he will say to the waitress. ”You know, we were just about to say grace. Is there anything that we can pray for you about today?” Most of the time they answer in the affirmative and they have an opportunity to pray for them.
Luke 14:23 So the master told him, “All right. Go out again and this time bring them all back with you. Persuade the beggars on the streets, the outcasts, even the homeless. Urgently insist that they come in and enjoy the feast so that my house will be full.”
You see, Jesus wants us to share his message with the lost, dirty, and the poor, the lonely and the hurting. His message is for all and yet there are many who have not heard. Will you share your faith with those around you, with those the Lord has placed in your life? Maybe we are in their lives for such a time as this. How will they know if no one tells them? Will you go?