God's word in today's world

… and God is satisfied

One of my best friends is a missionary in the Ukraine. They are assisting the church there to get back on its feet and to make a difference wherever they go. The small congregations that already exist have nothing. Actually, they can’t survive, but still they are driven to proclaim Jesus’ message wherever they go. With the nothing they have they are planning to go to Russia to do missionary work there.

It leaves me speechless!

In one of his newsletters my friend told about general life in the Ukraine. One of the pastors, Ivan, painted the following picture of his everyday life (this was just after the president had been deposed and Russia had invaded the country):

We are doing good. I have been to Krasnodon. I cross the border where the gangs control the situation. I was doing Sunday service there. Situation is terrible: People don’t get salary and pension. There is nothing in shops. No water. Telephones don’t work, no petrol. I took with me flour and yeast, as much as I could bring in hands (I cross the border on foot). My heart is absolutely broken. People were very glad to see me. We pray – people cry. They can’t leave because of different reasons. We had Sunday service and on the next street there was shooting. People not even afraid of shooting. God was with me and I got home safely. I was in camp for refugees in Russia. Every one there is an unbeliever. People are very closed. They didn’t want to listen the gospel.

Ivan has nothing, but in a way he helps other people who have less than nothing. I wonder how people can have less than nothing.

In the same newsletter my friend described something closer to home:

Last week in this same area we met Hugo (name changed) from Cape Town, an actuary who works for 80% of his salary – so that he can be involved in community transformation in Khayalitsha every Thursday. Every professional person in his discipleship group has founded their own NPO (non-profit organisation) to make hell heaven again. These men organise by arranging seminars to encourage others to live their calling.

In a student town a final-year student with an NPO – he teaches children canoeing – is arranging school fees, school clothes and extra classes.

In a Boland town a men’s Bible study group takes charge of a community project, a firm of attorneys that appointed someone to help children with maths, a trust that trains children who drop out of school and place them in jobs. Hell runs from a vision of heaven!

When talking to these people, they never see themselves – they see God working through them. And somewhere you can hear the Scripture: Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am (Philippians 4:13).

Paul’s command makes so much more sense: 17“If you want to claim credit, claim it for God.” What you say about yourself means nothing in God’s work. 18It’s what God says about you that makes the difference.

And I know with my whole heart that God is satisfied with the Ukrainian pastor, the actuary in Cape Town, the student and the other people in the Boland town. They are available, because they know they are simply the instrument through which God wants to make an enormous difference in many people’s lives.

Therefore, the big question in my heart is: Is God satisfied with me?

Bible reading

2 Corinthians 10:7-18


Are you available so that God can work through you?

Do you make a difference wherever you go?

Is God satisfied with your life?


Father, I have to hang my head in shame, because I know that I don’t always make a difference where I go. I know I still don’t leave enough space for You to work through me. But I want to call out with my whole heart: Lord, I want to be available for You. Please help me to look away from myself so that I can be useful to You. Amen

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