A Three-Fold Challenge

Why the Challenge?

Pointing Finger

The reason for this challenge is very simple. I believe that the Bible makes it clear that all believers are to be involved in the task of taking God's message of salvation to the entire world. Not everyone is called to the same part of the task. For many people, their field of service is their own neighborhood, or perhaps their place of work.

But I would challenge each and every person to seriously ask God just exactly what He would have for them to do in order to be part of the task. There was a time when I would have laughed at the mere suggestion that I would someday work overseas in Bible translation. But God has a way of surprising us.

And as always, He knows best.

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Pray

The easiest (and yet paradoxically sometimes the hardest!) thing to do is to pray. God loves prayer. The devil hates prayer, and his goal is to see everyone in Hell. That should be reason enough right there for each of us to be on our knees as much and as often as possible. “Except the Lord build the house, its builders labor in vain.” (Psalm 127:1)

Neither I nor any other Christian worker in the world can succeed without prayer. We could have enough financial support for ten people, yet without prayer it would be money thrown away. We could be working with the friendliest group in the world, yet without prayer not a single one of them will ever come to Christ. We could have enough training to teach in seminary, yet without prayer nobody will get the message.

So I challenge you: Pray for the Christian workers you know, at home and abroad. Pray for those hearing the Word, that their hearts would be receptive. On a personal note, please pray for me! I'm just as human as anyone else, and just as much “standing in the need of prayer.”

If you wish to receive a regular mailing from me with news about my work, please let me know. I'll be glad to add you to my list. You can contact me electronically at bill_penning@sil.org. Please specify whether you want to receive a regular mail letter or an electronic mailing, and if electronic, please specify if you prefer Adobe PDF (default), OpenOffice.org .ODT, Microsoft Word, or plain text format.

For my regular mail address and other means of contacting me, please see Current Billiard.

If you wish to commit to pray for my ministry, click here. You can also read more about Wycliffe Prayer Opportunities.

Give

The next easiest thing to do is to give. Most full-time workers are supported by donations from individuals and churches, since our work for the gospel is full time and we do not hold other, paying jobs. We trust God to touch the hearts of those whom He has chosen to provide for this work financially.

Everything we own comes from God. Therefore, my challenge is: Pray and ask God if He would have you give back to Him a portion of what He has provided for you, specifically for the job of evangelizing the world. Remember that giving is also a ministry, just like serving on the mission field or as a pastor or any other type of Christian service. And what Christ calls one of His followers to do, He will also enable them to be able to do. The opportunities for this type of ministry are enormous.

On the personal side, Wycliffe operates according to this principle, and my work is also supported by individual donations. (For more details, see the section on Getting the Job Done on the page about Billiard's Work.) If you feel God leading you to the ministry of giving to support the work I do in Brazil of providing computer technical support for Bible translation, you can either contact me directly at the address in the previous section, or else click here to donate on-line.

For other opportunities to give to the work of Wycliffe, visit Wycliffe's On-line Giving Page.

Go

Lastly, you may be interested in actually going into full-time service yourself. The opportunities are more numerous than I could even begin to list, ranging from going as a member of a church, to going with an organization such as Wycliffe, to even going as an independent worker. And the last time I checked, the only continent where there were no needs was Antarctica!

Christian workers come with an almost endless list of skills, from personal evangelism to computer work to aviation to accounting to… You probably get the picture. If you have a skill, someone can use you somewhere. About the only legal job I can think of that we definitely could not use is bartender.

The challenge here is simple: Pray and see if God might be calling you to join the team. It may be in church planting. It may be in Bible translation. It may be something completely different. If you're a warm Christian body, there's a job waiting somewhere.

Again, from the personal side I can speak of the need in Wycliffe for translators, pilots, teachers, accountants, computer specialists, graphic artists, maintenance workers, etc. We need people for both short term and long term commitments. If you think you might sense a calling, or if you are merely interested in finding out more, read about Wycliffe's Service Opportunities.

The fields are ripe for harvest.

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