Although my desire is to navigate every day with my mind set on recognizing and giving thanks to the Lord for the amazing grace He lavishes on me and those I love and care about, I regularly fall short of actually doing so.
Maybe you can relate.
Which is why I really do appreciate having a specific day set apart for intentionally thinking about, expressing, and giving thanks to the Lord, with my loved ones for the multitude of blessings that our family has received from Him.
But that’s not all I’m thankful for.
This time of year, I’m also specifically thankful for each and every missionary that has obeyed His call.
HOLIDAY DISCOURAGEMENT, THE COST OF OBEDIENCE
Because they have done so, they will be experiencing an aspect of the cost of obedience this holiday season.
It’s a cost that the majority of God’s people haven’t been called to pay, and which they have may have a difficult time relating to.
As I’ve thought about their willingness to obey and to joyfully accept the various ways the cost of that obedience must be paid, I’ve been lifting them up in prayer and giving thanks to our Lord for all of them.
FIVE STEPS YOU CAN TAKE TO ENCOURAGE THEM
If you know any missionaries and would like to encourage and challenge them, here are a few thoughts that you might considering passing on to them.
These come from the Apostle Paul’s letter to his friend and son in the faith, Philemon:
Philemon 4-6 I thank my God, making mention of you always in my prayers, 5 hearing of your love and faith which you have toward the Lord Jesus and toward all the saints, 6 that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgement of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus.
1–Follow Paul’s example and thank your God for each and every missionary and their family members and pray for them as often as you pray.
2–Inform them that whether they realize it or not, hundreds of others who know and love them, are aware of the love and faith that they have toward the Lord Jesus.
3–That their love and faith has been, and currently is being declared by them very clearly on a daily basis by their willingness to live so far away from those they know and love–for the Glory of God and the good of those they now live among.
4–That you know that they went to where they now live with the intention of sharing their faith…passing on to those that they now live among, the incredible gift of eternal life that they have received.
5–And that according to Paul, an effective way for them to share their faith, to pass it on to others, is to acknowledge that every good thing found in them is the result of Jesus being in them, and them being in Him.
THANKFULNESS, A SIMPLE WAY FOR THEM TO SHARE THEIR FAITH
Have you ever viewed thankfulness to God as public acknowledgement of every good thing that you have in Christ Jesus?
Have you seen thankfulness in that light before?
They probably haven’t either.
I challenge you to take a few minutes to think about every good thing you have in Jesus–and acknowledge those things through telling others how thankful you are for what you have in Him.
And then encourage every missionary you know to do the same.
I’m convinced that every missionary would be encouraged and blessed by understanding this truth this Thanksgiving:
Being thankful and expressing their thankfulness is a simple way of acknowledging every good thing which is in them because they are in Jesus and Jesus is in them.
And doing so is an effective method of sharing their faith.