Two paths

Two weeks ago, I was overseas visiting some of our partner churches and helping to encourage and assess the progress of our ministry.  

I am happy to report God is merciful and using our programs to help those who are hungry find Hope in Jesus and help with their need for food and clean water. Truly amazing results of lives changed spiritually, physically, emotionally, and thriving among so much despair.    

I flew home exhausted, but my spirit was encouraged. Somewhere between the continents, I picked up COVID and, unknowingly and frustratingly, gave it to my wife and youngest daughter. We are recovering, and I am now “nursemaid” to those I infected. There are many risks when traveling so far.    

But there are always risks around us–driving a car on a highway, out-of-control inner-city crime, and COVID is all around us.  

But have you ever thought of the risk of following Jesus?  

For most of us in the West, we never consider having to give up family, fortune, or health to follow God. But for many poor Christ-followers, it means just that—giving up your family and being ostracized by your Muslim family to join a church and follow Jesus.   

Some of the pastors of our partner churches are the most educated people in their village. They could easily leave and go to bigger villages and cities to make more money. But because of their dedication to Jesus, they choose to stay where they are and lead their church in worship. As a result, they make less money than they could and expose themselves to health risks like unclean water and lesser quality food.    

These are the unsung heroes of our faith. They are saying “yes” to God’s call of sacrifice and risking it all to serve Him. Never seen by our eyes, but always seen by God.    

I knew the risks of traveling: exhaustion, stomach upset, exposure to viruses, and even attracting COVID. But I also knew that saying “Yes” to God was the higher calling, the cost of following Jesus for me.    

Stop and think. Is God asking you to sacrifice something for Him? Are you willing to make that sacrifice? If not, what’s stopping you?

Read more about why we help the poor.