November 09, 2011

Witness Where You Are

Philippians 2:12-18

“You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea…”
Acts 1:8


During our first seminary summer internship, God placed us in Mount Rainier National Park. There we discovered a mission field. This experience absolutely changed our lives. We had never before engaged in Christ’s mission apart from specific activities in our local churches. Through relationships with park employees and visitors, Jesus opened our eyes to see great mission opportunities close to home. We discovered how much we loved those people who did not yet know the Lord. We enjoyed sharing Jesus with them. The experience forever shaped our desire to join Jesus in his mission wherever God would place us.

Jesus calls us into his mission of love right where we are. Sometimes “mission trips” away from home create a misperception that we need to go away from our everyday settings if we want to serve in Christ’s mission. We need to ask Jesus to open our eyes to the opportunities for mission in our own surroundings too.

Wherever we had the privilege to plant churches, the challenge was to think carefully about our “spheres of influence.” What were the regular patterns of life for us on a daily or weekly basis, and who were the people we consistently met in those situations? Those spheres of influence are the places where Jesus asks you to see people with his eyes. Whom does Jesus want you to see today?

Lord, bring to our hearts and minds those who are right in front of us today. Help us to see them and to reach out to them with your love. Amen.

About the author — Allen & Lynn Likkel

Revs. Allen and Lynn Likkel have worked in communities across North America for many years—planting churches, nurturing them along, and developing new church leaders. A minister in the Christian Reformed Church, Allen served with Christian Reformed Home Missions for nearly 40 years, and Lynn, also ordained as a minister of the Word, has served to build leaders and new congregations. In November 2010, Allen entered retirement, and the Likkels moved to Washington, their native state. They have four adult children.

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