During this unusual time, let’s take a look at one of Gods “unusual ideas” of effective ministry. Enter: the Apostle Paul. Paul was sovereignly given, by the Lord, a mission and vision statement to reach every non-Jewish person in the world! Oh yeah, and to do that without a phone, car, or internet. What happens next is that he finds himself in jail. What a conflict. The man who is commissioned to go to the ends of the earth with the Gospel is now in chains and not able to go anywhere.
It’s without question that it was God’s will for Paul to “go” and preach, so why would God allow Paul to be stuck in one place? Why had God not sent an angel to get him out like Peter?
Paul was no doubt was working through some of these thoughts himself but in the end he came to this conclusion; “Now I want you to know, brothers and sisters, that what has happened to me has actually served to advance the gospel. ” -Philippians 1:12
Going to prison didn’t initially seem like the best way for his ministry to be fulfilled yet, in doing so, he was able to reach some key people that he may never have met otherwise. Paul even had opportunity to give his testimony of Jesus before key governmental leaders. Jail was not the easiest path and probably not the one Paul would have chosen, but through it the Gospel advanced and we were left with a great lesson. That lesson being that under no circumstance is the Word of God imprisoned or “quarantined.”
“for which I suffer hardship even to imprisonment as a criminal; but the word of God is not imprisoned.” -2 Timothy 2:9 NASB
This is for sure an extreme example when compared to us just needing to stay inside and not have programs for a few weeks, but there is a mindset that this example addresses for us as an organization.
“How will we continue to fulfill the mission and vision of SCYM while we are not permitted to hold programs or meet with kids and volunteers in person?”
Well, we will do what Paul did. We won’t become discouraged or question Gods will. What we will do is everything that we are able to do. A loving phone call to check in to see how our kids are doing, provide some video content that they are able to interact with, and most importantly- spend some extra time in prayer for them.
Is this situation perfect? Maybe not, but I do know that we will come out on the other side and proclaim, like Paul, that what has happened has actually served to advance the Gospel.