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Genuine Article

Often times we read about missionaries who brought about major change in their lifetime. We also often read about missionaries who sacrificed it all never to see a fraction of the fruit their effort would bare. We hear about those who have gone before us and their lives painted pictures of epic proportions. We read their journals, their prayers and the stories of their faithfulness. We read these in the past tense.

There are other stories of scripture where people stepped out for the sake of the gospel and risked everything. They pressed forward using every ounce of their being to fulfill the yearning placed in their heart by their Creator. As a child longing to please his father we read of missionaries not wanting the spotlight and not complaining publicly when things didn't fall their way.

I love what Hebrews 11 says about those people of faith listed there... "...the world was not worthy of them."

For every 1 we read about in the bible or a book there are a hundred who's names are never known.

It is a rare thing in life to have the honor to actually meet someone whom you believe God would consider listing among the greats of Hebrews 11. I've been blessed to meet a few in my life. Tonight I spoke with one of them via Instant Message. This is what it's like to talk to someone whom I consider the 'Genuine Article Missionary'.

"I was leaving prayer meeting [and] police with guns drawn had someone on the ground, it's a gang WAR right now... people I love getting shot, stabbed...etc. I knew this would be hard, but this hard?"

These words were written by a Christian hero. These are the types of people whom I feel humbled to even know.

Not all of us are called to be in these situations moment by moment but after a dozen years of adult life in and around full-time Christian ministry... most of us fall woefully inadequate when it comes to doing everything we can for the glory of God. I place myself squarely in that category. I don't even believe it's intentional. I fear most of us have simply become consumed with good things... safe things... comfortable things... trivial things. Read the blogs, go to the conferences, buy the latest Christian merch... So much of it targets the same people discussing and debating the same topics. Our Heavenly Father looks down at us (most of us) and shakes his head.

Scripture is full of examples where it's the Father's pattern to seek out those who would follow Him with reckless abandon. Not ignorant abandon... but all-out God fearing abandon to the patterns of this world. Are we there? Are you there? Am I there?

I can't help but to think that while most of us (who have the vast majority of the resources in the Christian world at our fingertips) sit back down at our leather office chairs and begin to read blogs... there are people - our brothers and sisters- out there putting their lives at risk daily so that the message of Jesus can permeate a generation of people living in Satan's playground.

To my friend... I honor you. I pray your example awakens the rest of the Western Christian world. I pray it continues to awaken things in me I have not yet seen. I pray I'm always challenged to surrender more for His sake.

Thank you for your faithfulness. I see Jesus in you.

posted by Tally Wilgis @ Tuesday, September 16, 2008

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