“Where there has been acceptance of the gospel through preaching, my complaint is that there has been some motive” writes Arun Shourie in his book ‘Missionaries in India’. I wish he understands the motive behind missions, the love of God! God’s love is the motive of missions and that’s why it is ‘Missio Dei’, the mission of God. Unless one experiences the love of Christ in his life, he cannot be a true missionary; the love that sent Jesus Christ to die for our sins.
Missions is the grateful expression of a disciple lived out in complete submission to the One who saved and called Him to carry His message of love, forgiveness, salvation and hope. The picture and verse on the Cover signify this truth, that when we were gone astray, He opened the eternal way, by bearing our sins and with this thankfulness we show forth His praise to all generations. The article from the Director’s Desk, ‘The Missionary Call’ presents this as the threefold love, love for God, love for Neighbour and love for the Lost.
God seeks not only the able, but the available and equips them to be capable to fulfill His mission. Two Get Equipped articles, each focus on Training and Cultural Anthropology in Missions. It is the call for every believer to take the gospel to the ends of the world and to provide such an opportunity to train laymen and women for missions, GEMS started a new program, Missionary Preparatory Training Course (MPTC) and the Magnifying Glass column is focused on this initiative.
The Tentmaking column poses the question “Are we serious enough with the Mission at the Marketplace?” sounding the clarion call that “it’s time for the Christians at marketplace to live out as Salt and Light leading the professionals to taste the love of our Lord Jesus and to bring them to the light of salvation.” Deploring the deplorability of “Christian ministry (that) present God as the ultimate capitalist whose paramount attention is on successful living evidenced by financial prosperity”, the New Gen Thinking column article, ‘Call Centers for Christ’ addresses the practicalities of workplace evangelism and presents the big need to reach out to the BPO industry.
The Children’s Chronicles column ‘Use Me’ will be doubly exciting for children; it is cartoon with coloring pages. When their exams get over, parents, teachers and wardens can teach the children the truth of the story that God has called children too to partake in His mission and let them have the fun of coloring.
The field focus of this issue is on the Rohtas Hills and one article talks about the Oraon people of the hills giving an anthropological and apologetic view and another article brings out a beautiful testimony of a tribal woman who left witchcraft to become a disciple of Jesus Christ.
Missions is about God; and He uses people to fulfill His vision and it is imperative that the carriers of the gospel are cared for. ‘Caring for God’s Servants’ is a Standing @ the GAP article that shows the need and the nitty-gritty of Member Care from recruitment through retirement.
Just eleven days after her husband Graham Staines, the missionary in Orissa who was burnt alive with his two little sons, Gladys answered to an interview on what would she say to young people considering missions, “once you are sure of that (your call from God) then just be prepared for whatever, even if it costs you loss. We must learn not to hang on to our own lives; we must learn to allow God to use us… So if the Lord has called them and they are sure of their call, then... don't stay at home.”
The fulfillment of the purpose of this issue is perfectly presented in these words of the lead article ‘Embracing God’s Global Vision’, “If the youth catch the vision of the nations and if missions becomes the talk of the church and at every meal in houses then an entire new society will be born and the family and church will fulfill this heavenly vision.”
Click to read this issue online - Missio Dei Special