Greetings from Reynosa! This is the second of three blogs I hope to send you from the sunny south. The School here continues to be amazing, but I must tell you, I MISS YOU and home in Tennessee! My Heart is there, and my calling from God is there!
As you know, the Lord has called us to be an Antioch Church—which was the Eastern Gate Church to Asia and Europe in the First century. We are to be that Gateway in an Antioch fashion to Appalachia. I believe that we will ultimately be part of the planting of hundreds of churches in small rural areas, even as Antioch Church was the hub for a similar expansion of the Kingdom in Paul’s day. By the way, I fully believe I will live to see most if not all these churches planted!
So, let me get to the point of this blog, which is about honoring the Call God has given to you individually.
Did EVERYONE at Antioch know the church’s God-given vision about sending out missionaries from their church? Did everyone there support the vision? Was there general excitement about being part of something so big that only God could dream it and fulfill it? The answer to all three questions is, I believe, a resounding YES!!!!
So, did EVERYONE at Antioch go out to plant churches? NO!!! Did EVERYONE at Antioch invest all their time and talents into the teams sent? NO!!! Were all of Antioch’s resources directed toward the sending of pastors and the planting of churches? NO!!!
There were plenty of folks at Antioch whose call from God looked like being faithful as they served in various roles in and at Antioch. They knew the vision and were spiritually part of God’s vision, but their individual call was to help with prayer, or worship, or small groups, or cleaning up the house before the house church met, or…IN ANTIOCH!
Likewise, everyone in this congregation now (and those the Lord is leading here) are part of the Vision from God to reach His poor and forgotten children in Appalachia. But not everyone is supposed to go plant a church. Not everyone is supposed to lead worship at a new church plant. Not everyone is supposed to go evangelize in another town or village…
There were disciples then and there called to serve…then and there! There are disciples here and now who are called to serve… HERE, AND NOW! If that is you, then your call from God is to teach or lead or worship or love or give or pray or… right here in Livingston. Are you part of planting hundreds of churches? YES! Why? Because you were faithful to God to serve in your “Antioch.” Keeping this Gateway Church healthy and balanced is the ONLY way God can use us to plant healthy and balanced churches in other places. We need those called to go forth to go forth; We need those who are called to serve faithfully here to serve faithfully, here!