30th May

A Kick-Start To Overseas Mission

The man who had had the demons went all through the Ten Towns, telling what Jesus had done for him. And all who heard it were amazed. Mark 5:20

‘The church is the only organisation that exists for those who are not its members” Archbishop William Temple.

The lives of Jesus’ first apostles demonstrate great zeal to spread the Good News to others. We learn of their mission journeys in the Bible, and through tradition, which tells, for example, of Thomas founding a church in India. Some believed that Andrew, who was so keen to introduce his brother Simon to Jesus, once came on a mission to Scotland. Britain’s own early apostles had a similar zeal.

When Samson first landed on the beaches of Britanny he brought with him a large crew to help begin the great mission there. But God’s first lesson for them was this: no amount of evangelistic organisation is a substitute for a prayed for, God-architected, God-timed healing encounter. Such an encounter can have a domino effect which influences a whole region before the organisation has even begun to get into gear.

As they were mooring their boat they saw a hut not far from from the harbour, and a man weeping, and gazing out towards the sea. Samson went to him and asked what was the problem. ‘I have now waited here three days and three nights’, the man told him, ‘for someone to come and help me from across the sea’. He was a devout man of prayer, who had a leprous wife and a deranged daughter, and as he had prayed for them, God had given him the assurance that he was to wait at the harbour for such a man who would heal them.

Samson went to the man’s home and poured forth prayers over the sick women, who were restored to health. This was the start of a wonderful ministry, and from there Samson established Christian communities throughout the region, one of which, at Dol, became the most famous of all.

God of healing
God of strategy
help me pray like that weeping man;
help me act like that heroic apostle.