When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. “Why this waste?” they asked. “This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.” Matthew 28:8-9 NIV
Founded by Billy Graham in 1974 and cemented by the likes of John Stott, when the Lausanne Movement speaks, people listen. This pivotal movement, which connects ideas and influencers for global mission, has undergone significant changes over the past couple of months, such as appointing new and generally younger leaders.
In November 2015, Dr. David Platt, president of International Mission Board, who is about my age, was appointed chair of Lausanne’s theology working group. A month later, I had the privilege of being appointed the new Lausanne co-senior associate for international student ministry. To God be the glory!
Several awesome things happened at Urbana 15 (InterVarsity’s student missions conference) last December in St. Louis, Missouri. There were over 600 decisions for Christ and 5,500 commitments to short-term missions! What challenged me most was Dr. Platt’s exposition on our propensity to passionately pursue a cause (even international student ministry) while personally ignoring Jesus.
Indeed, wasn’t John Wesley (founder of Methodism) a devout preacher and trans-Atlantic career missionary before his conversion years later?
As Dr. Platt succinctly put it, many try to manufacture a heart for missions, yet miss a heart for Christ.
In Matthew 26:8-9, the disciples expressed concern for the poor, but just a few verses later Judas sells his Master for a few coins and Peter publicly denies Him three times.
After an incredible six weeks of visiting 13 cities to promote my Amazon book Thinking outside the Window, it was a relief to take off the entire month of January, not only to rest, reflect, recuperate, and enjoy my family, but to fully engage in ISMC’s annual 21-day fast and prayer.
How I want my heart to absolutely and fully belong to Jesus first, to Jesus only! As you step into the new year, reflect on and recalibrate your relationship with Jesus Christ.
Dr. Platt’s poignant question at Urbana still resounds: “Does your heart fully belong to Jesus?” If it does, your time and energy and money should automatically follow, even if it’s a whole year’s worth of wages distilled in one alabaster jar.
The Great Commandment, to love God, comes before the Great Commission to go and tell. Worship first, then work and witness.
O that our ministry and mission for Him will only be an overflow of our absolute in-loveness with Him!
Dr. Yaw Perbi