September 13, 2013

Hometown Missionaries

Luke 8:26-39

“Return home and tell how much God has done for you.”
—Luke 8:39


Barbara deeply loved Christ and was blessed with a great husband and children and grandchildren. She served to great effect in her church. When she died, she left a powerful legacy of faith. However, she carried a guilt burden for most of her life.

Since childhood, she had always wondered if she should do mission work in some faraway country. When missionaries spoke in her church, she felt deep pangs of guilt.

It is really hard to serve Jesus happily if you think he’s disappointed in you, if you believe he really wanted you to do something else with your life than what you are doing.

In today’s Scripture, Jesus heals a man. The man begs to sail away and follow Jesus. But the Lord, as he does with most of the people he saves, sends the man home to his own town, which is populated by people who are so afraid of Jesus that they have asked him to leave.

Jesus left, but he did not leave those people without a missionary. That’s why he placed Barbara in her hometown. And that’s why you are in yours.

It took years for Barbara to find peace on this issue. If we all could, right now, accept our hometown assignment from God, and if we could believe that Jesus is pleased with our ministries and our life, we would all be much happier.

Lord, you have placed me where I am. If ever I have missed a calling, please forgive me. But today I claim your calling to the life you have given me. Amen.

About the author — Keith Mannes

Keith Mannes serves as pastor at Highland Christian Reformed Church in McBain, Michigan. Keith and his wife, Alicia, recently celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary,
and they are thankful for their three children—Eben, Charis, and Breanna.

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