Greetings from a hot and humid Mumbai, a mighty megalopolis of 21 million people situated on the western coastline of India.
When I was speaking to a stranger a few days before leaving, and the subject of me going to India came up, he immediately said, "Why India? Why don't you go to Soweto, Motherwell or somewhere in Port Elizabeth?" The answer is simple: It's out of obedience to one of the last commands our Lord and Saviour Jesus gave His disciples before He ascended into heaven: "Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey all I have taught you. Surely then I will be with you to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:19-20).
In the natural, there are many reasons why we shouldn't go. I mean, aren't there any Indians among the 1.1 billion people living there who can do the same thing we are doing? Why don't the Indians look after their own and we can look after ours? Isn't there enough work to be done back home? The answer will always be yes, but the liberty is not ours to claim that this was a suggestion. One of the reasons for the power of the Holy Spirit coming upon the early believers was so that they would be His "witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea, Samaria, and to the end of the earth." (Acts 1:8). These were also words spoken by Jesus. When Jesus said, "Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and ends of the earth," He could just as well have said the name of your city, region, province and then… THE ENDS OF THE EARTH! Jesus is for all nations, and we are called to step out into the realm of faith, taking Him at His word and obeying His commands.
We need to learn this early on in our walk of faith with Him. He calls us to obedience, and obedience to Him will result in blessing. Through faith and obedience we get revelation that we don't get while standing there analysing and criticising. I have seen it time and time again: If I can get people to 'go' just once - somewhere, anywhere outside of the local church with the purpose of sharing the Gospel or just encouraging another church - they ALWAYS come into more revelation of God, and there is ALWAYS someone on the other side of their obedience who is forever changed or deeply impacted because they came. God has arranged HIS body perfectly. Every part. He knows what role each part must play for HIS body to be built up and encouraged. He also knows how to reach a city. There are some things that will only happen because we go, because 'going' is what He destined us to do.
In Psalm 2 the psalmist writes, "Ask of me and I will make the nations your heritage, and the ends of the earth your possession." Let's keep asking, giving, sending and praying for those who go, but let's not die without ever having gone ourselves. We are not at liberty to alter the command - it is what it is! We will not neglect to go and make disciples in our own city, province and country, but, just as importantly, we will also be a church who obeys the command to go into ALL the world!
So that's it from me and the super team of six Oxygen Lifers and one Josh Genner in the heart of Mumbai. We're headed into the slums for the day to pray, preach, encourage, strengthen and just share Jesus with this part of "all the world!" YES LORD!!