When I was little, my parents would often read stories of missionaries to my siblings and I. I loved hearing these stories and they awoke a longing in me to do what these people devoted their lives doing. I always dreamed of one day going on the mission field and serving Jesus. To me, the mission field meant a desert in Africa, a rainforest in Brazil, or a slum in Mexico. It meant living in a hut with no electricity or running water and sleeping on a mat on the floor. It meant learning a new language and adapting to a new culture. But while all these things are certainly parts of living on the mission field, this word had a much greater meaning than what I had first thought.
In my mind, I always associated the word mission field to a place I would go one day in the future. A time in the future where I would truly be able to serve Jesus the most. But God began teaching me several years ago (and is still teaching me today) that the mission field is not something of the future, but something of the present. It is not a place that you go to, but it is right where you are wherever you go. It is at the check out line in the grocery store, it is at the party at your friend’s house, it is at your work, it is at your home, it is in your words and actions. Your mission field is not in the future; it is in the here and now. And as God began teaching me these things, He showed me that the mission field is not a time in the future where I will serve Jesus, but it is taking the opportunities I have right where I am to serve Him and be His light. And while I do still feel called to take the gospel to other countries one day, God has taught me that I don’t have to wait until that day to serve on the mission field, but that I can be active on it here and now in the places God has me.
1 Chronicles 16:23 tells us to “sing to the LORD, all the earth; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day.” Notice how this verse states that we are to proclaim His salvation from day to day, not sometime in the future. So today I would like to challenge everyone reading this, including myself, to not wait until the future to serve Jesus, but to take part of the mission field where we truly can serve God the best: the mission field of here and now.