“And ye shall be my witnesses in Jerusalem…….” Acts 1:8
In 1991, shortly after Jesus changed our lives, Joye and I began to sense God’s call to ministry. My mind worked overtime and my spirit was restless within me. During this period, we were exposed to missionaries from all over the world. God used the testimony and friendship of these wonderful people to challenge us to consider a call to missions. So we set our hearts to head in that direction. We earnestly desire to go where the Gospel is not being preached, even to this day. But God burdened my spirit with a thought, “How could I you go to the ends of the earth to tell of His grace when I haven’t even told my own family?” This is was what drove us to pull up stakes and move from our spiritual comfort zone in Tennessee back to where our family lived in N.C. Well, God has certainly proved to be faithful and we are confident that we are serving right where God would have us to serve after all these years.
The commission begins in Jerusalem.
It is important to remember that Jesus wasn’t saying, “You should be my witnesses….” He was stating the fact that believers are His witnesses beginning in Jerusalem. Disciple-making begins at home and it extends to the ends of the earth. The Gospel worked out through the lives of Jesus-followers is the means by which disciples will be made. The task need not be burdensome. Just take a friend with you to the game, pick up your neighbors kids from school, invite a co-worker to the concert, pray with a nephew, call your mom, bless your ornery ole uncle, smile at the waitress or simply eat supper with your spouse and children at home tonight around the table. Just do what you do with disciple-making intentionality and God-glorifying motivation. We may miss the mark here and there but grace redeems muddled efforts and ill-motives when our hearts are set to help others find the joy that we found in Jesus Christ. So along the way, while doing what you would naturally do, make disciples.