Recently I received a question from someone who came to visit the Live Beyond base.
"So, what is your biggest need besides finances?"
It was hanging in the air for what seemed like minutes and you could cut the tension with a knife. Everyone was waiting for my answer on the edge of their seats.
(OK, maybe I'm being a little dramatic, but it does add emphasis to the point of this post)
"Besides financial contributions," I said, "we really need people to come and stay here for extensive periods of time."
If it's one thing I've learning about mission work it's that you can easily shut someone up by requesting they move to a completely foreign place and live there for an extensive amount of time to spread the Gospel.
But, can't we just Skype in from time to time to check on things?
It's time for Christians to accept the truth that we have been and are abysmal at mission work.
This isn't new either. In Acts 11 the early Christians were pretty bad at mission work too. They were still in Jerusalem even after Jesus had given them the Great Commission and after the miracle of Pentecost.
However, God used the unfortunate stoning of Stephen to scatter the believers to other cities where churches emerged and flourished and the Gospel began to reach new people groups.
So, what's happening now?
I firmly believe that God has seen our lack of enthusiasm for the nations and He is bringing them to us.
Nashville specifically (a city that's at the center of the Bible belt culture in America) has an enormous refugee population, and the largest population of Kurdish people in the world outside of Northern Iraq.
That's really weird! Why is that happening?
Just like Acts 11, God is using displacement as a way to get His Gospel to all people groups.
God is literally bringing the nations to the doorstep of the Bible belt and daring us to drive 15 minutes to their homes (rather than traveling 20 hours by plane and living in an environment that is hostile to the Christian faith) to tell them about Jesus.
So even if you aren't going to the nations, He is bringing them to you.
Time to act.