August 27, 2014
Loading
   
   

OCTOBER  8, 2013 ARCHIVED STORIES:

RICHMOND, Va. (BP) -- An American executive working for a major automobile company in Asia is just hitting his stride: top salary, big results, great industry contacts.

But it's not enough. He wants more than anything to tell the people around him -- many of whom have never heard the Gospel -- about the joy and hope he experiences in knowing Jesus Christ.

What should he do? Quit his job and go into mission work? Maybe. On the other hand, maybe he's ideally positioned to do mission work. Maybe that's why God nudged his company to send him to Asia in the first place.

"I had to bite my lip a few times when I was talking to him," admits Scott Holste, IMB vice president for global strategic mobilization, who encountered the executive during a trip to Asia. "My gut reaction was to say, 'It sounds like God is calling you to be a missionary,' because that is so much a part of our thinking."

Indeed, God still calls people to be missionaries every day. But in a complex, economically interconnected world where thousands of Americans live and work in places missionaries can't access, there are other possibilities. He can use all kinds of folks to accomplish His purposes.

"God may indeed be calling you out of a vocation as an engineer, for example, and calling you into full-time missions," Holste says. "But He may be wanting to build on the fact that you are an engineer -- that you have the skill set, the problem-solving ability and the creativity to bring to the task of expanding the Kingdom of God."

Holste is heading up an effort to encourage and equip "marketplace professionals": business people, teachers, medical workers, artists, students pursuing degrees abroad and others already working overseas or open to the possibility. The marketplace is the world. Countless American Christians already practicing their vocations have the professional skills the world wants -- and the hope the world needs.

More than one-third of the world's nations impose "high or very high" restrictions on religious activity, including mission work, according to the Pew Research Center, which tracks such restrictions in 197 countries. About 75 percent of the world's approximately 7 billion people live in those nations. The trend toward increasing restrictions, even in supposedly democratic countries, appears to be accelerating, Pew reports.

But God, the ultimate Creator, is endlessly creative. Governments, cultures and borders may prevent certain types of traditional mission work, but they cannot stop the spread of the Gospel. Church history has demonstrated that again and again, when merchants, teachers, artists, explorers, even slaves, have taken the Good News with them along the globe's trade routes - they transform the places and peoples they met along the way.

There are other spiritual principles here. Work is holy, beginning with God's own labor: ... Read More

Cooperative Program, sacrifice, even funeral services show Michigan church's care
MONROE, Mich. (BP) -- At Monroe Missionary Baptist Church, church members understand that pushing back darkness requires a readiness to serve. Read More
ERLC religious liberty panel discussion set
"[W]e're living in a time where subtle and not-so-subtle infringements are happening that undermine religious liberty."
-- Andrew Walker
WASHINGTON (BP) -- Religious liberty always requires attention, but that is especially true now, in the view of Southern Baptist policy specialist Andrew Walker. Read More
End-of-life issues examined by panel
NEW ORLEANS (BP) -- With major portions of the Affordable Healthcare Act, also known as Obamacare, now being implemented, issues of medical ethics and care continue to be debated across the United States. Read More
Senior saints help birth church plant
NEW ORLEANS (BP) -- The 16 or so remaining lay members of Lakeview Baptist Church in New Orleans didn't fit the bill of a church planting core team. All senior saints, none younger than 70, they lacked youthful energy, but compensated with experience and vision. Read More

First Person
Phil Boatwright
FIRST-PERSON: How will they know us?
The witness of America's Christian populace has been so weakened by its acceptance of immorality in entertainment that those suffering the misery of sinful lives will never look to us for examples of redemption, movie reviewer Phil Boatwright offers.
Jim Veneman
FIRST-PERSON: Anticipating the first frost
Photographer Jim Veneman provides tips on how to capture just the right photographic moment, akin to anticipating the first frost of the fall.

 

   
   


 © Copyright 2014 Baptist Press. All Rights Reserved. Terms of Use.


Southern Baptist Convention