Lives on Loan:
The Importance of Christian Stewardship
In many ways, the World Missions Offering is like an empty barrel...
Let's Fill the Barrel
by Henry J. VanKluyve
The World Mission Offering (WMO) originated with the powers of Heaven. Remember the Great Commission from the lips of Jesus? An eternal flame was lit on that Judean hillside when He commanded His disciples, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen” (Matt. 28: 19-20).
His words have become a clarion call for the annual WMO—an offering of self and finances for the sake of God’s Great Commission. This year, Sunday, April 24, has been set aside for each Free Will Baptist church to celebrate World Missions Sunday. You may notice the date falls on Easter, giving us two special reasons to plan for a record offering.
The WMO is related to all aspects of Free Will Baptist global ministry. Giving to the WMO results in people hearing and believing the gospel. Nearly 2,500 men, women, and children were saved in 2009. God has blessed us with more than 1,000 churches and mission works overseas. Nearly half of these have been started during the past 10 years. Church attendance has soared to nearly 40,000 each week.
The WMO Goal
In the five years I’ve spent meeting with pastors and churches, I have likened the WMO to a barrel. Each year, we strive to fill the barrel to be poured out in support of all missionary endeavors. They are all worthy of our support.
Last September, International Missions ambassadors met to plan for the task of promoting the WMO among pastors and churches. After prayerful consideration, we voted to challenge the denomination to raise $650,000 for the 2011 WMO. This money underwrites the ministries of every missionary overseas. As the offering grows, opportunities for global evangelistic efforts increase as well.
Having served as director of deputation 14 years (1967-1981), I am fully aware of the enormous expense involved in worldwide outreach. As one of 13 ambassadors who promote the WMO across the denomination, I am thrilled to tell others about the offering that has become such a vital part of missionary funding.
Reaching Farther Together
Free Will Baptists raised more than $600,000 for global evangelism through the Go10 Walk for the World project last year. This special event produced a great deal of enthusiasm. So much enthusiasm, in fact, that many churches designated their WMO money to Go10 in an all-out effort to reach the $500,000 matched, planned gift. We celebrated together when we reached the goal, and we are happy to tell you that the matched gift has reached $750,000 in value. Praise the Lord! When we stand together, we can reach and surpass goals!
Slogans abound everywhere, especially in the political arena. One of them is “Yes, we can!” Let this become our rallying cry, as we trust God to go before us, stirring us for world outreach through the World Mission Offering.
Pray earnestly that, with God’s help, we will reach our goal. Order your coin banks and other materials from
www.fwbgo.com. Involve your children and young people in this worthwhile project.
I appeal to both pastors and lay people. Fill the barrel on April 24. Respond to the challenge before us! If Free Will Baptists could raise one million dollars for the 2010 WMO and the Go10 projects, we can certainly raise $650,000 for WMO 2011! Can we fill the barrel? Yes, we can!
About the Writer: Rev. VanKluyve is serving his fifth year as ambassador for International Missions (2006-2011). He retired from pastoring after 58 years in the ministry. He also served on the FWB Foreign Missions staff as director of deputation for 14 years (1967-1981). Henry and his wife Virginia live in Hermitage, Tennessee.