I spent the weekend hosting our ministry booth at Missions Fest Vancouver for the ninth consecutive year. Missions Fest is an amazing event—the largest annual three-day conference of its kind in North America. Thousands of people attend the plenary sessions, workshops, and exhibition hall.
Many of these folks cruise the aisles in the exhibition hall, attracted there by the diverse ministry opportunities represented. Many stop to talk and ask questions about specific ministries that capture their attention.
A man in a wheelchair stopped at our booth yesterday. He asked a few questions about the two-week summer opportunities in Eastern Europe, and then he asked, “I suppose everyone who participates has to pay their own expenses?”
“That’s right,” I said.
“But what about people like me?” he asked. “I’m just a poor minister. How am I supposed to go if I have no funds?”
“If God sends you on an assignment as His ambassador, will He not provide the necessary means to get the job done?” I asked.
“You don’t understand,” said the man. “I would like to go on a missions trip, but I don’t have the funds to do so. So how am I supposed to go?”
Again I said, “If God sends you on an assignment, will He not provide the necessary means to do the job?”
“Perhaps,” said the man. “But how?”
I then explained that my husband and I have worked in career ministry for more than twenty years, and we’ve never received a regular monthly salary. Through letters and person-to-person conversations, we’ve shared our vision with churches and individuals, and God has moved in people’s hearts to partner with us in building His kingdom. “We’ve done our part, and God has done His. He has always provided the financial means for us to fulfill His call on our lives, “ I said. “He will do the same for you if He calls you to a short-term ministry opportunity.”
The man wasn’t convinced. “Here’s what I think you should do. I think you should hire a professional fundraiser. This fundraiser could gather enough money so that anyone who wants to go on a missions trip with your organization can do so for free.”
Words nearly failed me. Nearly. Enough words remained that I was able to say, “But what would that do for building people’s faith? What would that do to teach them firsthand about God’s amazing, unlimited ability to provide financially to do what He’s called them to do? I’d rather work with volunteers who willingly say yes to God and trust Him for what seems impossible as opposed to people who say yes only when it feels safe and comfortable or when they know the outcome.”
The man turned and wheeled away only. He headed straight for a fundraiser’s booth. Minutes later, he returned and handed me several pamphlets. “Read these,” he said. “And then you decide what God says about raising funds so that people can go on missions trips at no expense.” He wheeled away before I could respond. Maybe that was a good thing.
Little thrills me more than meeting men and women who exercise childlike faith in God. This guy was not one of those.
“So anyone who becomes as humble as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven,” said Jesus (Matthew 18:4). What does that mean? It means we exercise uncomplicated faith in our heavenly Father. We live as though we believe His promises. We trust Him to provide whatever’s needed to do the job He’s asked us to do. We step out in faith believing He will do what He says He will do before we see the evidence of this happening. We don’t argue with Him or demand that He do things our way. We humbly acknowledge that He is God and we are not, and we’re actually okay with that.
God wants us to trust Him with our hearts and our intellect, and to walk out that faith in real life. May He grant us the ability to trust Him like a little child unquestioningly trusts his loving mom or dad to care for and provide for him. Imagine the impact upon our hurting world if every Christ follower demonstrated this type of faith.
For what is God asking you to demonstrate childlike faith in Him?
#bgbg2 #ChildlikeFaith #MissionsTrips