EveryOne:Reaching Farther Together
secure investments in an
By Norma J. Goldman
Read more about the Free Will Baptist Board of Retirement at www.boardofretirement.com.
Despite the past year of economic uncertainty, disappointment and confusion, Christians can take heart in the certainty that investments made from an eternal perspective are entirely safe.One very positive outcome of the country’s economic challenges has been a heightened awareness of the things that really matter, causing many to reestablish priorities.
A focus on international missions is one of those priorities, and it springs directly from the marching orders we received when Christ said, “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations…” We accept this as what it is—a direct command of high priority, not a ‘divine suggestion.’ The 21st century provides believers with unprecedented opportunities to be involved in this task of making disciples. We literally can “go” in many ways.
Let me illustrate first with the story of David and Melva, a faithful, committed Christian couple and parents of two lovely daughters. They have raised their girls to be aware of the implications of the Great Commission as they themselves have been throughout their faith walk. Now in retirement, they have the joy of seeing one of their daughters move to Africa where she will begin work on translating the Bible for a people-group that presently has no Bible in their language. David and Melva’s lifelong ministry of giving, going and praying continues to produce eternal investments through their daughter.
Brent is a retired health care industry executive. He and his wife journeyed to Brazil to volunteer in a medial clinic. The work of the clinic and its volunteers was supported by a huge team of prayer warriors here in the States. While patients waited in long lines for treatment, Brent and his wife told them about Jesus and prayed not only for their medical issues, but for their souls. Isn’t this the same approach our Savior used? He showed concern and demonstrated the genuineness of His love for them by meeting both physical and spiritual needs.
Elizabeth has been involved in childhood ministry and publishing all of her adult life. While on a two-week mission trip, she felt and responded to God’s call to give the last years of her professional work life in overseas ministry to children, and in teaching young churches how to reach children for Christ. Rather than thinking of slowing down in retirement, Elizabeth is excited at the prospect of embarking on a whole new life purpose.
A retired couple we know uses their homemaking and handyman skills to manage a team house in a foreign country. Short-term volunteers work out of the team house to minister to the struggling churches there. Friends and family support the work with supplies, encouragement and prayer—but all who participate are “going.”
Increasingly, we see that believers are not content just to send money—although there is a great need for mission offerings—but they prefer to be personally involved as well. Sometimes that means going, sometimes it means providing resources so that others can go, it often involves enlisting and training others, and sometimes it means telling the stories that inspire others to lend a hand.
Being personally involved always means prayer. Praying for more workers, for specific ministries, for financial resources, for specific people groups and geographic areas is part of God’s plan. We can “go” in the quiet places of our hearts so that as God acts on our requests in accordance with His plans and purposes, He also reveals His will for us—what He would have us do, where He would have us go and where He would have us focus our energy and resources.
As you take regular inventory of where you are financially, I invite you to do the same with your spiritual investments. Be encouraged in the fact that they are entirely, eternally secure.
About the Writer: Former magazine editor Norma Jackson Goldman enjoys a successful freelance writing career in her retirement. She lives in Nashville, TN.