I spent the past few days at an All Nations gathering in Asia with many of our church planters hearing their stories. Some of our workers are church planting among Muslim unreached people groups. Others are embarking on a vision trip to serve the persecuted Rohingya refugees. Some others are starting kingdom businesses in persecuted areas. And others are successfully making disciples among the unreached. As they shared from their hearts, my heart swelled with pride, not because of their successes, but because of the tears that flowed, the setbacks experienced, and the inadequacies that were so real.
One worker just got a biopsy to test for cancer the day before and another is fighting inconsistent brain signals that tell the person to stop breathing. Another is having to time-out and return stateside to address ongoing health issues. Others are weary and tired from ministering to prostitutes, prisoners, and orphans. And others are seeking a new direction. As they shared, their stories, tears, prayers, and faith flooded the room.
I am so proud of our workers as they stand, fight, wage war, and conquer against all odds to start disciple making movements. They are my heroes who have paid a great personal price—their lives. They are the ones who “will not sacrifice to the Lord my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing” (2 Samuel 24:24). They are the ones who “after you have done everything, to stand” (Eph. 6: 13). As the sharings, tears, and prayers flowed, I’m filled with fresh courage for the petty things that confound me daily. I get to serve these called ones. Like the psalmist, “I say . . . they are the noble ones in whom is all my delight” (Ps. 16.3). As wait at the airport for my 3 a.m. flight with an 8-hour layover, I am touched again that I’m called to serve the called ones.