Thanks to WOGF for sending Kelly and me (along with 7 friends) to see John and Amber in Papua New Guinea! My head is filled with great memories and lots of sermon illustrations. I was struck over and over by the ceaseless imagination of our God in both His creation and in getting His redemptive message out! I was especially struck by how many people it takes to get His written Word into the hands of an illiterate tribe with an unwritten language. We met with one missionary couple who had been on the field for 27 years. They hiked into the Sambari tribe in 1991 with small children and now their children are married and here in the states…. Lots of work and lots of help from people all over the world!
The Bible is almost complete in the Sambari Tribe – but how much longer would it have taken without pilots and planes; without printers and computers, without health care providers or school teachers, without administrators and financial people? When we think of missionaries or any other Gospel ministry we think of the person on the front lines or the person with the microphone; but that Bible Translator, Church Planter, or gifted preacher can’t do what God has called them to do unless all of the other spokes in the wheel do what God has called them to do!
It’s the message of 1 Corinthians 12 – but it becomes especially clear when one considers a young woman called from South Dakota to be the High School secretary in a mission’s school at Lapilo, PNG or the young man from Bern Switzerland who keeps computers running in that same center where electricity is intermittent and phone lines are frequently sabotaged – all so that the translators and church planters can complete their work.
It was inspiring on many levels, but the most profound question it begs is;
“Am I wholeheartedly fulfilling the role to which God has called me, right now?”