Here at IGo we just completed our sixth term of the last semester for 2010. It truly has been a great term. In our I Corinthians class we studied the apostle Paul’s many apostolic sacrifices. Pauls was extremely jealous that the gospel would go forth unhindered. This meant sacrifices that had a price tag on them. Sacrifices are not sacrifices unless they hurt and some thing is lost or given up. Paul plunged beyond the gospel call into the reality of sacrifice to implement the call. Paul put the call into shoe leather if you would. Paul not only went beyond the call but he went above and beyond the call !!! He sacrificed those things which were his rights, those things other apostles enjoyed (marriage), those things the old testament law taught (do not muzzle the ox), even those things Jesus taught (they who preach the gospel should live of the gospel). Paul says, “I have used none of these … all for the sake of the gospel”. Paul went twice beyond the call, all for the sake of the gospel. Is this ‘going beyond the call’ only for Paul or is it for all? Paul also says in this letter, follow me as I follow Christ. The bottom line is simply this….this call is for all who follow Jesus Christ. What a sobering challenge for us comfortable, easy life seeking, Americans…myself included !!!
It is so easy to read the Acts account of the early church, read books and hear stories of great missionaries of yesteryear, even watch them videos of great missionary heros, study the history of missions, and yes, even study the apostle Paul’s many missionary sacrifices …. BUT NEVER GET BEYOND THE CALL !!! It is time the church of Jesus Christ step out of the boat of her comfort zone (as Peter did) and truly follow Jesus Christ and His call ….going beyond the call into reality. I fear the church has hedged herself into her comfort zone of safe haven securities. Her safe haven of fellowship and doctrine, her safe haven of insurances and protection, her safe haven of her own financial institutions, her safe haven of social interactions, her safe haven of business and enterprise, her safe haven of entertainment and fun, her safe haven for my family and future generations. And these things are not necessarily all wrong. But Peter stepped out of the boat of all that safe haven (and so did Paul) …. to follow the call of Jesus Christ into reality. MOST GREAT GOSPEL NEEDS ARE OUTSIDE OF THAT SAFE HAVEN !!! Jesus told Peter to launch out into the deep to catch a great draught of fishes…they are not to be found on the safe haven of the beaches. Jesus said, follow me and I will make you to become fishers of men. My prayer is that we, like Paul and like Peter, would also move beyond the call into the realm of reality …BEYOND THE CALL …all for the cause of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
MTM To Vishakhapatnam, India
November 23 through December 1, MTM will be conducting a Bible conference in south east India in the state of Andhra Pradesh. This will be a repeat conference with this native coordinator. MTM will also be partnering with IGo Ransom Ministries. Rosa King & Heidi Gingerich will be teaching a singles ladies class on the subject of Godly femininity. Brother Dave Yoder (Delaware, USA) as well as Ricky Wright (Georgia, USA) and myself will be teaching approx 175-200 native pastors and church leaders. We will also be preaching some revival meeting services as well as other village ministry activities. THANK YOU FOR YOUR FAITHFUL PRAYER SUPPORT.