“What are you going to say?”
“Not sure, I guess i’ll figure it out as I go.”
This conversation took place subconsciously between my dad and myself across the room from one another. We were packed in a 12×8 square foot room with nearly seventy-five others. In this abandoned soviet school, this was the only remaining room with a fire stove. At -5 outside, I deemed it a good location choice. Suddenly, midst the freezing cold, language barriers and new surroundings of this village , it became apparent that in the absence of their usual preacher, my father was being called upon to preach. There was no further instruction (at least that we could understand) but only to begin whenever he was ready.
I have no doubt that the idea of being ready was the furthest thing from my dad’s mind. His intention on this trek was to meet some new believers in an attempt to connect them with some already existing churches. Needless to say he was not “ready”. However, in perhaps the proudest moment I can recall of sitting under my father, he began to preach. There was no exegetical discourse, nor was there any attempt at alliteration. What proceeded from his mouth rather was an overflow of a heart that Christ had won, purchased and was always changing to be made more like him. Thus his word was simple, “Isn’t it great that we can have peace in Christ.”
After a few minutes of expounding, and reading a few verses, he sat down. There was no alter call, nor were there any conversions. What there were, however, were men and women who had lost their homes, livelihood, and families who heard a message of hope in the name of a Savior.
Once we reconcile that we MUST go…we must preach. It is difficult to feel qualified to do so. The call to preach the gospel seems overwhelming to us because often times we know not what to say, or how to say it. Whether it be in a village of Croatia or the city of Louisville KY, we have a temptation to try and provide the lost with something that will catch their eye, prick their ear, just enough to where they will come to church and perhaps they might be saved.
This is why Paul ends his thought in Romans 10 about going and preaching and hearing with the statement in verse 17, “So faith comes through hearing and hearing through the word of Christ.”
We have not been commanded to go and preach anything other than the word of Christ. To know anything among the nations except Christ and Him crucified. Like the demon-possessed man, we are commanded to go “and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”
What we have in Missions is the promise that it works. This word of Christ, and the message of what He has done for us…that IS the message the Holy Spirit uses to open eyes, and open ears, and open hearts to see Christ for who He truly is.
What are you going to say? You need not fear…Christ has said it. Merely preach what He has spoken.
“I have come to seek and save that which is lost”