WEEK 1, DAY 7: MISSIONARY
Praying for the Nation of Tunisia by Bethany Pedigo
Scripture Reference: Ezra 7
Be honest. When you think of the word “missionary”, do you think of living in a hut in a remote country? My parents have served as certified missionaries for a decade of their lives, but in each place they did different things including: digging wells for clean water, teaching about finances, teaching English lessons to Muslim women using the Bible as their textbook, giving guitar lessons – oh, and these other more “missionary-like” pursuits – teaching pastors in seminary, and leading children’s bible studies.
When I look at Ezra chapter 7, I see that Ezra, even though he was in exile in a foreign country that was hostile to other religions and often demanded that people worship the current king, this is what he was doing. Ezra chapter 7: 10 “10 For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.” He was in exile! And yet, here he was, using his gifts even there. This perfectly positioned him to be used by God. He was able to leave Babylon and return to Jerusalem and help the people rebuild! What if he thought Babylon wasn’t the right place to continue to study and observe the law of God? What if he thought that being in exile disqualified him from being a missionary? From being used? From being on mission? The reality is ALL believers have a ministry! We are all called and given spiritual gifts and unique abilities that are to be used to build up the Body of Christ! This is not a task for the rare few missionaries, pastors and evangelists. Don’t believe me, read 1 Peter 4:10 and Romans 12:6, 1 Corinthians 12:7-11 and 1 Timothy 4:14! The gift you have may be in administration, agriculture, business or film! That’s awesome – use that gift where you are for God’s glory. You are not in the wrong place. You are not the wrong person. Would you pray with me?
Heavenly Father, Giver of all good gifts, forgive us for using our gifts only for our own gain, or for thinking that we don’t have any gifts from you. Forgive us, and cleanse us and purify our hearts. Help us to see ourselves rightly, the way You made us. ARISE artists and prophets, musicians and builders!!! We are a people that possess gifts and we will build God’s Kingdom here because WE ARE HIS TEMPLE! Amen.