Has the mission changed?

The dramatic events following COVID-19’s outbreak have turned nations upside down. This has impacted social activities, job security and motives for living. Examples of suffering, mental stress and confusion about how to respond have been our daily news diet. This assault on our lives is supposed to be rebuffed by “going quick, going hard.”

Missions are not immune from the new boundaries on activity and interaction. In the past month I have writ-ten to most of the missionaries listed in GC3’s prayer guide. Every one of them has faced significant chal-lenges to normal ministry. However I have been amazed and encouraged at the innovative ways that many have found to stay in touch and serve their communities.

I have found one significant ingredient serves mission partners in a world that has changed dramatically: Our God does not change!

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows,” James 1:17.

What does this mean for mission, as we face a pandemic? It means that the message of mission is still the same. God the creator is still in control. His invitation found in the good news of the gospel still stands. His promise of His abiding presence is still offered through the Holy Spirit, His promise of eternal life is still valid.

Clearly, life has changed – our methods of communication and our service has had to adapt. But we can take heart that God’s acts of grace seen in forgiveness, reconciliation, life beyond the virus and life eternal con-tinue as unchanged realities. These truths motivate us in our changed circumstances, even in our disrupted plans.

Hebrews 13:8 says, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Take courage, as you look again at the message of the gospel, knowing that it has not changed and will sustain your work for Jesus.

I love the Gospel message. It is a constant joy and assurance in the battles of life. May God bless you as you discover new ways to share the message that does not change, a message that can change our lives from des-pair to hope.

Ambassadors together,

Murray Stevenson