At a recent candidates course for new missionaries preparing to go to Southeast Asia here in the OMF UK office we asked Jack* to share a little about his call into world mission:
A unique way
God leads every person in a unique way. The mission call looks different for each person, although it is the call to serve God.
God’s work to call me into his service began before I was born. My parents were both Christians and my Dad had a great heart for mission. He prayed that God would send his children to all the nations. I grew up not knowing about my Dad’s prayer, but even at 7 years old, my friends called me a ‘little missionary’ because I invited them events at church and talked to them about Christ.
As a teenager I carried on going to church, but my heart was far from God.
Hearing the call
When I was 15 I heard God’s call – I repented and followed him. I gained a strong desire to serve God, so I supported the youth group I attended and later I became a leader. At the same time, I became interested in mission. Three of my siblings were already involved in mission or were preparing to serve God overseas.
It was around this time when I first heard that there are still unreached people groups who are yet to hear the gospel. It made me angry. In my home country, we have so many opportunities to hear or share the gospel. We have Christian TV and radio , millions of Bibles, many Christians, a lot of churches and even Bible verses on the side of the road. People who don’t believe in God have many opportunities to get to know him if they want to.
But in other countries, especially in Southeast Asia, many haven’t got the chance to hear the gospel. There are few Christians to meet, churches to visit or Bibles they could read. God set my heart on fire for the lost. I started to pray for different people groups who haven’t had an opportunity to hear the gospel yet.
Who, me, Lord?
After a few months, during my prayer time, I received God´s calling to overseas mission. He accused me of being unwilling to serve. I had prayed that God would send people, but I had never thought about going myself. This prompt changed my whole life. I was only 16 years old, but promised God that, if he would lead me step-by-step into mission, I would follow him all the way.
So 10 years ago God called me to serve Him overseas. Since then God has provided a lovely wife who shares my desire to give unreached people groups the chance to hear the gospel. Although I was ready to give up on my professional training, God has also enabled me to finish it successfully. He is making a way for us to serve him.
It is not always been easy. Friends and family have not always understood why we want to serve God overseas. But God has confirmed his calling to us and we will follow it
At the moment we are making the last few preparations before leaving for East Asia. We’re excited about will happen next. We don’t know exactly what it will be like, but we are trusting him. He has called us and enabled us to keep going day by day and will continue to be with us in the future.
- Pray for Jack and his family as they prepare to go to Southeast Asia – that they will continue to know God’s leading and provision.
- Pray for more new workers to hear and respond to God’s call to serve him cross-culturally.
- Do you feel God may be calling you to serve him? Have a look at our short-term Serve Asia programme or our dedicated opportunities site for a flavour of the long- and short-term opportunities we have available.