Send Me! (Phil. 2:19-24) (Missions)
– Last month, FVC committed to an exciting new direction, supporting and sending out our OWN missionaries!
– To fulfill the Great Commission, “Go and make disciples of all nations…” you either:
- Go on a mission abroad, or 2. Financially and prayerfully support those who do.
– YOU have “stepped up” and answered the call! In the months ahead, remember to remain faithful to the commitment you made to support your missionaries!
– Romans 10:14-15, But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? 15 And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”
– This is how the Good News about Jesus has spread to all nations, since the church began.
– The Apostle Paul planted the Philippian Church on one of his missionary journeys, and he is writing this letter to them to encourage them in their faith:
* Read Philippians 2:19-24 (NLT)
Who was Timothy?
– On Paul’s missionary journeys, he preached the Good News in Timothy’s town, and he was saved. (Paul was a force-multiplier, creating disciples who also preached the gospel, and made disciples.)
– Read Acts 16:1-5 (NLT)
– Timothy was a young disciple, who was well thought of by other believers.
– Because his mother was Jewish, that makes him Jewish. To make his testimony stronger, Paul had him circumcised. (So his message could be better received by the Jews.)
– Circumcised! That’s a Big sacrifice as an adult. This decision testifies to his character!
– He could have said, “No!” Challenging Paul’s leadership & judgement, but he didn’t!
– He could have said, “That’s not fair! Why me and not Titus?” (Titus was Greek, and had his own mission.) But he didn’t!
– He obeyed, and endured, and had a powerful testimony because of it!
– Example: As Christians, we often want to find the easier road, when God is actually trying to refine us by the road he has us on. (Refiner’s Fire!) Like “The Daniel Fast”, we look for ways to make it taste good or hurt less, but that isn’t the point. Make your flesh submit!
– Timothy was a spiritual son to Paul, a fellow missionary and co-worker for the cause of Christ.
Why send Timothy?
– Verse 20, “I have no one else like Timothy, who genuinely cares about your welfare.”
– He wasn’t just “checking a box”, or “doing his job”. (Or keeping the pastor off his back…)
– He genuinely cared about the people he was a missionary to, the Philippians.
– Verse 21, “All the others care only for themselves and not for what matters to Jesus Christ.”
– Timothy’s mission wasn’t so he could explore the world, or to say he did “something”, or to feel less guilty, or to be praised for his efforts, or for any other “personal” reason.
– His only reason was to do what matters to Jesus; to spread the Good News, and see others be saved.
– Timothy stood out as a person whose whole life was sacrificially devoted to what matters to Jesus, and the welfare of His people.
– He sees the risks, and sacrifices to follow in Paul’s footsteps (prison, beatings, outcast, constant resistance), but he does it anyway!
– 2 Tim 1:6-8, (Paul speaking to Timothy) This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you. 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidness, but of power, love, and self-discipline.8 So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for him. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News.
– 2 Tim 3:11-12, (Paul speaking again) You know how much persecution and suffering I have endured. You know all about how I was persecuted in Antioch, Iconium, and Lystra—but the Lord rescued me from all of it. 12 Yes, and everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
– What make Paul proud of Timothy, is the same thing that will make Jesus proud of you:
- Genuinely care about God’s people, not just yourself.
– Not just the people you like, or you think deserve it…
- Live a sacrificial life of faith. If it’s real, it WILL cost you something!
– You need to be willing to do whatever it takes to see the mission of Jesus succeed.
- Be willing! Often times, the only thing standing between you and doing great things for The Kingdom is having a willing and submitted heart!
– Psalm 51:12, Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and make me willing to obey you. (This is a prayer of submission. “Not my will, but Your will in me!”)
MOVE, today, from “Send him!” to “Send me!”
– We need to be people who are willing to make the sacrifice, and go out into all the world and spread the Good News about Jesus, even if we know the cost will be high.
– Example: **FVC/Homes of Hope Mexico Mission trip**
– 2016, Labor Day weekend, details at Jan. 10th meeting, *Bring $250 non-refundable deposit. (More info to come…)
– This is sacrificial and costly! (Time, money, vacation, physically, spiritually…)
– FVC will partner with YWAM/Homes of Hope to buy and build a house for a homeless family.
– You will make a tangible and lasting difference in a family’s life.
– Why not here in USA? – Worse poverty there, and no resources what-so-ever.
– Well then, why not help one of the 1 billion people who live is worse poverty than Mexico?
– Because this is where Jesus is sending us to. (…and it’s actually 3 billion.)
– Example: Revisit the Starfish story: Starfish wash up on beach, boy throws them back in, one at a time, man watches and says he’ll never make a difference because there are too many. Boy says, “I can make a difference to this one.”
– Over 3 billion people live on less than what you paid for your coffee today, every day!
– Metaphor: There are millions of starfish that wash up on hundreds of beaches every single day. Don’t become overwhelmed and distracted by the fact that you can’t save them all.
– You CAN make a difference to THIS one!
– Each and every “starfish” matters to Jesus, regardless of which beach it’s washed up on.
– Stop wringing your hands about who is getting helped, or who deserves it more, and just start “throwing starfish back in the ocean”!
– Example: Father of family in Mexico from our last build, had ran out on his family, turned to alcohol, faithful wife had prayed for a house, he shows back up on build day.
– Some on the team didn’t want him included, he doesn’t deserve it, don’t let him come back now, he’s a failure as a husband and father. I REJECT THAT!
– He is poor, desperate, homeless, and without hope too! He had given up on life and his family. He needs to be “thrown back into the ocean” too!
– Maybe this is just the show of God’s love he needed to give him hope? Maybe this is the opportunity for restoration of his family? Homes of Hope, right?!
– We brought him in, let him build, and prayed he will find his hope in Jesus.
– MISSIONARIES BRING HOPE TO THE HOPELESS! Reaching people with the gospel, and encouraging fellow believers by reminding them of the hope they have in Jesus is being a missionary!
– Mexico doesn’t have to be YOUR mission, but you DO have a mission. Maybe right here at home. SSDC, community dinner, your neighborhood…
– Be a missionary right here at home, by the way you live!
– 1 Tim 4:15-16, Give your complete attention to these matters. Throw yourself into your tasks so that everyone will see your progress. 16 Keep a close watch on how you live and on your teaching. Stay true to what is right for the sake of your own salvation and the salvation of those who hear you.
– You are Christ’s ambassador. Your actions will testify to the truth of what speak.
– You must be consistent, or no one will believe you! (Example: Becoming a leader…)
– 1 Tim. 6:20, Timothy, guard what God has entrusted to you. Avoid godless, foolish discussions with those who oppose you with their so-called knowledge.
– Like on Facebook and the Inter-web. Ask yourself, “Where is the fruit?” “Is this glorifying my Savior?”
- Are you being like Timothy?
– Do you genuinely care about God’s people, and the things that matter to Jesus?
- Are you bringing to people the hope you have found in Jesus?
– There is a lost and desperate world out there, and they need to know Jesus!
– “And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them?” (YOU tell them!)
- Who is willing? Whom can Jesus send?
– Understand that a life in Christ is sacrificial, and costly.
– Can you commit to “throwing one starfish” back into the ocean today?
- Is YOUR hope in found in Jesus today? If you don’t know Jesus, get to know him today!
– prayer –