Isaiah 6:8. … Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
We used to drive all the kids home after church. Once we forgot a little 3 year old girl named Gilma. Ever since then, when we were getting ready to leave, little Gilma would pipe up, “Here I am, Here’s Gilma”. She was determined to never be left behind again.
Kids are all there, ever notice that? If they like something, they’re all in. Appearances don’t matter. Lazer focus, they do not miss a thing! That’s why Jesus said we are to become as children if we are to enter into the Kingdom (Matthew 18:3). Kids aren’t distracted by the cares of this world (Mark 4:19). Marriage, having kids of your own, a job and a house are all great. A blessing in fact, but don’t let God’s blessings take your attention off of Jesus.
Elizabeth Elliot, a great missionary once said ‘wherever you’re at, be all there!” She wasn’t talking to children, she was talking to adults. Children usually don’t have to reminded to be all there. They are usually ‘here’, in the present. A sign for a child who is having problems is that they aren’t ‘present’ mentally. Their minds are on problems at home. A child shouldn’t have to be distracted by adult problems. A normal, healthy child is attentive and involved in the present. Elizabeth Elliot was addressing missionaries for the most part.
Missionaries have responded to the ‘call’ by saying ‘Here I am Lord, send me’. When they get sent, sometimes problems interfere with their attention span and they aren’t ‘there’ when being a missionary to the people they were sent to serve. They may be physically there, but there but their minds aren’t.
Wherever God has sent you, be all there. Stay at home moms, Sunday school teachers, factory workers are all sent. Be there! Be a light to your kids, students and coworkers. You can’t do that by daydreaming or wishing you were somewhere else. You can’t even do that effectively if you’re worried about something. Be like a kid. Be all there, interested and interactive. Ask questions (kids love to ask questions). Listen to the answers. To do that you have to be attentive. Don’t let the cares of this world affect what God has called you to do.
A guy recently asked me if he was fulfilling the Great Commission by just telling his family, friends and associates about Jesus. I said ‘absolutely’. In fact, most professing Christians don’t truly evangelize any one. Verbally disapproving of someone’s sin or lifestyle isn’t evangelizing. There is no ‘Good News’ in squashing someone. Be there, body mind and soul. When they ask for you say ‘here I am!’ Ready and eager. As eager as you say ‘here I am’ to the Lord, you should be the same way when a fellow believer, or a sinning heathen calls for you.
There is a saying that ‘you only love the Lord as much as the person you love the least’. I don’t agree entirely of it but it is food for thought. Jesus is crazily in love with the most despicable human being you and I know. If we a madly in love with Jesus, we should be madly in love with the worst people we know. We need to be here, in the present. We need to eagerly be there to help them and to respond to them when they (or the Holy Spirit) beckons us.
When you remember your promise to the Lord of ‘Here I am’ you will remember to be ‘here’ wherever you are. Many missionary problems will be solved magically by being ‘all there’. Missionaries will miraculously learn the languages and customs of the county they were called to. People will like them because they are engaging and interested in what they have to say. They’ll be inviting you more to things, and you’ll have more fruit. Fruit of the Spirit as well as souls because you are in the present, and not being strangled by the past or the problems of someplace else.
Mark 4:19 And the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the word, and it becometh unfruitful.
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Dean and Winnie Peters
Joyfully serving the ‘least of these’ in Managua Nicaragua
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