Those who have devoted their lives to God in full-time ministry, whether at home or overseas, need our support. Especially now, when many of those who bring the Gospel to others may have had to pause or re-think the way they go about their work. Too often, they can feel ‘out of sight, out of mind’. It’s time to honour them for all they sacrifice for the kingdom, so dig deep and seek God for how you can make their burden lighter.
Green: Set aside five minutes today to make contact with someone your church supports on the mission field. Tell them they are not forgotten but are in your prayers.
Amber: Re-read a Christian worker’s latest correspondence prayerfully and write back an encouraging response. Or if you don’t know one, ask the leaders in your church who you could begin to support.
Red: Put together a parcel to send with some of their favourite treats from home. Whether it’s a magazine, a jar of Marmite or a hot water bottle, God knows their needs and will prompt you when you ask him.
‘In that way, the parts of the body will not take sides. All of them will take care of one another. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it. If one part is honoured, every part shares in its joy. You are the body of Christ. Each one of you is a part of it.’ (1 Corinthians 12:25–27 NIRV)
When I was in Ohio last year, a woman called Suzanne let me stay in her home for a week. We were running Christian football camps and it was a lot of hard work but a lot of fun. Suzanne was very well off and it was something you could tell just by looking at her (confirmed when she took me for a ride on her boat). It’s quite easy to look at someone like Suzanne and assume they aren’t particularly interested in the messiness that is the mission field. But that is completely wrong.
It’s true that she didn’t feel called to the ‘front line’. She didn’t feel a particular gifting for interacting with the kids or talking to the group, but she had an incredible heart for mission. And she used the gifts she had to support it – her finances. And it was money she had earned through working very hard.
She selflessly blessed coaches and campers alike. I noticed her buying bagels for children who couldn’t afford lunch, she collected football boots for kids who had been playing in flip flops and she supplied her home and food to me for a week. She even gave me a gift when I was leaving! Of course, she was so much more than simply generous, but her generosity was the thing that really stood out to me.
It was on that camp that I realised what it meant to be the body of Christ. If one part stops working, the whole body suffers. If Suzanne hadn’t played her part, kids would have been hungry, I would have been homeless and camps would have struggled. Instead, we flourished. Those serving as coaches didn’t just get by; we were thoroughly blessed! She bought us drinks and food, she opened up her home and she prayed with us.
You can have a heart for mission and serve in different ways – for many that is financially. If you can give – give; if you can pray – pray; if you can teach – teach. It is all valuable in God’s eyes. If you know someone working in full-time ministry, be a Suzanne to them. Little gifts, prayers, words of encouragement, etc. – it all means more than you could ever realise!
Bronnie King just completed her master’s in creative writing at Loughborough University and now works as an intern for Ambassadors Football.
She has played football for as long as she can remember and loves being able to use sport as a tool for reaching people with the gospel.
Today’s charity is: Ambassadors Football
Ambassadors Football Great Britain is a Christian football organisation dedicated to the transformation of individuals and communities through football.