The Great Commission is followed immediately by the Great Provision. Have you noticed? “Go…and make disciples of all nations” is the compelling commission. But then comes the wonderful, enabling provision: “Remember, I am with you always…” (Mat 28:19,20 NRSV). “I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age…” (tr. The Message).
The World Mission Prayer League is committed to “noticing” the wonderful provision of God. Alas, it is too easy to forget.
We forget, perhaps, because of the fearsome range of challenges before us. They are impressive. We may be impressed, too, by our own lack of resources and abilities to meet them. And soon we begin to calculate the limit of our obedience by the boundaries of our grasp. We forget, somehow, that God is not limited by our resources and abilities. Maybe it is due to old-fashioned laziness. Maybe it is simple unfaith.
We have discovered that we need continually to remind ourselves of God’s faithfulness. We need to “factor in” his grace-filled, never-failing, powerfully-enabling faithfulness as we hear his command and formulate our response. We must learn to depend upon him.
Hudson Taylor once said: “The man who holds God’s faithfulness will not be foolhardy or reckless, but he will be ready for every emergency. The man who holds God’s faithfulness will dare to obey Him, however impolitic [unreasonable] it may appear….”
We hold this value deeply: dependence upon the God who calls us and promises to provide for us. We picture it as simple leaning upon the faithfulness of God. “I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day….”
This value works itself out throughout our fellowship. – in particular, perhaps, in our financial policies. We do not go about “passing the hat” or “raising support.” We do not have a “development” department or send out letters of financial “appeal.” Rather, quite simply, we pray – and commit ourselves to depend upon God for his provision.
This is the way that God has led us. He must have known that we would need constant reminding to lean upon him. He must have known that we would easily forget his faithfulness and begin to measure our obedience by our resources. And that is not good. We are not interested in recklessness, certainly. Yet we want to be ready to “dare to obey.”