I had every intention of becoming a missionary. Preferably international. I really felt like I had a call. And then I had several tweaks to my life.
Now more than 12 years later, I found myself wondering how I could have mis-read my "calling" so completely. And I feel like I now have some answers...
I still am called to be a missionary.
I am called to tell my kids about God's Love and the salvation He offers.
If you could look back over your life and put your finger on your input that God used to save someone...even if you weren't The One Who Prayed The Prayer with them, wouldn't you look at that thread that got woven into the master plan, and say wow...God used me to help save them...WOW!
Yet, as parents, especially as stay-at-home-mothers, we apologize that we don't witness to strangers at the Kroger or Tanzania...while we probably ought to do that as well, the impact that we can have on our own kids should be embraced! What a mission field!!
I am called to support new Christians!
As missionaries, part of their job is to support and connect new converts...what do you think you ought to be doing in church?? Shouldn't we be talking to new members and visitors? Why do we think they've come to church? Shouldn't it be a place of family? Another mission field!!
I am called to reach out to those hurting/struggling/searching!
Missionaries often use their jobs or their unique experiences to reach out to those hurting, searching, struggling...look at your family, your church, your co-workers, or in my own experience, new parents with babies/kids with special needs or diagnosed with cancer!
I am called to challenge/pray for/reach out to good people that we live with day-to-day!
I have a very dear friend who attended a Christian school daily, a strong church weekly, and had many Christian friends...many of which, including myself, assumed that she was a Christian...but, no, she wasn't...I have had the pleasure of talking to her again, and she shared with me her good news...and I wasn't really surprised. It hit me really hard, that it DIDN'T surprise me and I have no recollection of asking her.... what if she had slipped through the cracks due to assumptions!?!?! Thankfully, she never slipped through God's cracks, He knew, loved her, and saved her...but we do a disservice to her? Did we forget to love her/ask her in a search to find the blatantly "unsaved"?
We should take advantage of any mission opportunity...we should not miss those mission fields in our own paths...we should not look for the grand opportunities at the expense of the the daily opportunities with those we know and love.
We are on the mission field. 24/7. I didn't miss my calling due to choices in my life. I just misunderstood where the Mission Field is... It doesn't have to be Downtown, Across the Country, or Outside of Our Home Country...It has to be in our own homes, with our friends, with the opportunities that our days afford us...we simply never leave it...The circle is never too small or too large...
So. This time I'm listening, Lord...I get it...show me again...