Whole Wide World
This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations.
I attended a tea function in a Pacific Rim city one morning, part of a conference that had brought together more than fourteen thousand women from nearly forty different countries and two dozen denominations. From my standpoint at that event, the visible proof of God’s global work was everywhere I turned. Eastern Europeans conversing with people from the American Midwest. Women from London being introduced to Christian leaders from Asia. Ladies with expressive Hispanic accents laughing and sharing stories with others who spoke the common love language of Christ’s family.
The kaleidoscope of God’s body was represented there. And even though it was still only a miniature version, it was enough to blow my mind, to recalibrate my ethnocentric, geocentric compass readings. It made me not want to filter out the vast scope of His mission or keep it funneled so tightly around my own city and nation and mailing address.
Right this moment—in Peru, Australia, South Africa, Ukraine, New Zealand, Uganda, and countless places around the globe—the whole wide world of God’s kingdom is up and moving. His people on every continent are serving Him and needing Him and loving Him and leading others to love Him, just like you and your church are doing in your own particular corner of the world. Our incredible family of brothers and sisters are living and working, praying and trusting, watching Him do in their local context the same kind of activity and transformation that we love seeing Him do in ours.
And it’s really easy to forget this. To forget how big His operation is. To forget how infinitesimally small our own full plate is. To forget the enormity of His purposes, happening all the time amid the many colors and languages and denominational styles of His many, many children. We forget that He is always moving everywhere, in ways beyond our imagination—and that if we would truly open our eyes and ears to the Spirit’s prompting, He could show us all-new opportunities for grasping His global vision in our minds and investing our prayer and passion into it more fully than ever.
If you and I spend all of our weeks just going to our church, going about our business, and worrying about our tomorrows, we’ll miss out on the huge work God is doing in our world. Lift your eyes from the narrow circle of your own life to the broad beauty of God’s activity and opportunity being done this morning through his church all over the world. It is certainly a sight to behold.
I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb.
Ask God to show you even one place where you could begin directing your prayer beyond your borders.
Excerpt taken from Awaken: 90 Days with the God Who Speaks.