Here at Liberty it is Global Missions Week. Every aspect of our normal class days has taken on a missional focus, bringing attention to the many countries that need Christ. Missionaries that have served long-term in countries across the world are brought to our classes to tell us their stories, their hardships, their rejoicings, and their prayers to see the country they serve proclaim Christ as King.
Today at Convocation, the president of International Mission Board (IMB), Tom Elliff, came to speak to us on the topic of whether we have a heart for missions. Each missionary that has come to speak to the masses here at Liberty has had a different take on evangelizing in other countries but one detail of their presentations has remained the same; both in number and emphasis. I have heard the statistic countless times, but today it finally clicked. Every missionary has shared the amount of people groups that have never even heard the name of Jesus. That number is over 11,000 different people groups, consisting of literally billions of people.
Can we even truly begin to imagine a number so vast? It's such a staggering statistic, but what does it mean for the Christian that isn't called to serve overseas? What steps do they take to fulfill the Great Commission? It's a difficult course, but it is what Christ has called us to.
Despite all that I have been hearing about how the rest of the world needs Christ, I can't help but think about those around me, my friends, that do not know Christ as their Savior. As the Lord continues to work in my life, the Holy Spirit convicts me of the people that I have not shared Jesus with, many of those people being some of my closest friends. It's like Paul writing to the Romans about his brothers, the Jews. He says in Romans 9:1-3:
"I am speaking the truth in Christ-I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit-that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh."
There are times where I lay in bed, unable to sleep because I am thinking about you. Thinking about how I have wronged you by not sharing with you the hope that I profess. I have such a deep conviction for my actions and my silence. What am I afraid of? Why do I hold my tongue during obvious moments when the Spirit wants to move? Where is my strength? Where is the boldness that my God has given me?
I see every struggle, every hardship, every trial, every questioning moment, and yet I do nothing. I see your Facebook statuses, I see your tweets, I see your life through the mask you have made on the Internet. No matter how careful you are about trying to not reveal too much, I see the subtle cry for help. I see your desire for something more. I see the Spirit working on you, and yet I do not edify. I see your need for answers, and yet I turn my back, I close the window.
My heart is broken for you, because in all honesty, I do care about you. You may not think that I do, but it is my prayer that you will one day ask me why I have hope, why I can stand strong during great tragedy or hardship. I pray that I was able to reflect so strongly the light of Christ, that it is impossible for you to not know that I love the Lord. Even if it were just a conversation, I pray that you know there is such a great weight on my heart to care for you, not for my own personal gain or glorification, but solely for the Glory of God.
You may think that no one cares about you, but I do. You may think that you have no one to talk to, but I am here. You may think that I am fake or superficial, but you tell me your evidence for that judgement call. You may think that you are not "good enough" for Christ, well you would be correct. But coming from the mouth of a wretched sinner, I tell you how broken and sick I really am. I'm able to present myself as the "good Christian boy" that "hasn't ever done anything wrong" on Facebook or Twitter or even this blog, but I am not. I'm just as, if not more, broken than you. But the difference between you and me is that Christ has made me new, Christ has taken every sinful thing I have ever done, and every sinful thing I will ever do, and nailed it to the cross. He put to death the old Kasey Channita and has made him a free man, no longer found guilty by sin in the Father's eyes.
This is my desire for you, that you would stop trying to find satisfaction in temporary gratification. That you realize that my words are true, that every day you let pass by, you are condemning yourself to eternity apart from God. Every day you are missing out on everything He has planned for you. Aren't you tired of living this life without hope? Aren't you tired of living this life for the day-to-day?
My heart is broken for you, because I love you, and I want to see God move in you. I am filled with great anguish, such a deep and heavy sorrow because my King is not with you. When you turn your back on me and my words, you are turning your back on Christ and his sacrifice, that his life was wasted and in vain. He wants you. He loves you. Love Him.