Thursday, February 18, 2010

Does a Little Matter?

Africa is a continent with massive needs, but has wonderful
opportunities for ministry with the Gospel, discipleship, biblical training, and compassionate care for God’s glory!

We should not settle for doing a little for the kingdom of God when we can trust our sovereign Lord to use us much for His glory.

On the other hand, we should never “despise the day of small things” and do what we can, even if it might be something small. Remember the boy in the gospel of John who only had a small poor lunch of five loaves and two fish, but yet in the hands of Jesus the lunch was multiplied to meet the needs of 5000 men plus women and children.

On one occasion in Africa, Margaret, my wife held a little AIDS baby for an hour. Did the baby know what was happening? I carried another baby around the AIDS hospice and sat with another little sick boy who snuggled up next to me. We may not have made a real difference in the lives of these children, or did we?

Margaret and I were on the streets with a young missionary working with street children. We bought lunch for 20 boys at an expense of only 25¢ each. Did this make a difference? Most of the boys ate their lunch and left. Only a few were very thankful and appreciative. $5 to buy a large lunch for 20 boys is such a little thing. Did it make any difference?

We visited a church-based community school in a building with no roof, no windows, no chairs, and a dirt floor. Almost 500 children were crowed in the one room! I saw a little boy with an open, infected lesion above his eye. I treated it with a little antiseptic and band-aide. This was such a small thing. Did it make any difference? The little boy sure seemed to appreciate this care and concern and repaid us with a smile and a hug.

The mission team leader and I conducted a three-hour seminar for 44 pastors and Christian workers which included a snack. The seminar along with the snack and soft drink for each came to a total of only $20, which was less than 50¢ each. This is such a small amount. Did it make any difference? These pastors sure appreciated it, especially the teaching from the Word of God and the small snack of bread and soft drink. Many of these pastors go without food weekly so their wife and children can eat.

Many times, we think missions and ministry can only be conducted by those well-educated, knowledgeable, articulate speakers, who can sing, lead well, and give counsel to every problem. However, many of us are not is this category, but we can do small things.

We can sit on the corner with a street child and give a piece of bread and drink while sharing the Gospel. We can hold children in an AIDS hospice or in a Christian orphanage in Zambia, Malawi, Uganda or the Philippines.

There are millions of orphans in Africa and thousands of untrained needed pastors. There are 200,000 street children in the Philippines and an estimated 41,000 untrained pastors.

It would be wonderful if many of God’s people age 21 to 80 would consider taking their abilities, talents, background, finances and/or expertise and give to Jesus and let Him multiply these gifts to reach the multitudes with His Gospel and compassion for His glory! Why not?

Someone said to me years ago, “A little from our world makes a big difference in theirs!”

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