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Missionary Mistakes – Part I

Over the time, I see more and more how I have done things as a missionary that looking back was not wise. I plan to share a few with you in these next few blogs

The say “hind sight is always 20/20″ – and that works in the Lord’s work as well. I have made many, many mistakes and thru these few posts would like to share a few with you so that you may avoid making the same ones. You will find both mistakes and warnings. I hope they can be of help.

Part I

The last week I have re-thought what my responsability as a missionary truly is. Of course many may know the general answer, but I found it easy to get sidetracked. We came to Argentina with a desire to plant churches by way of training young men who desired to learn and preach the Word. When we arrived to Argentina, the desire was fresh and pursued with all of our strength. The Lord blessed and we even saw young men who are today serving the Lord in the churches. But I found out that as time went by, I began to look more towards building the church instead of building the men. Bro. Austin Gardner, who is my spiritual father and friend, taught me and even warned me of getting off focused, yet I still took my eye off of the mark. Just recently I was challenged to re-think my goals and therefore I did.

Just yesterday, I was reading a book (Disciples are Made not Born by Walter A. Henrichsen) that will help get my point across. To give you an idea of what it taught, it spoke about 2 deer hunters that went to the woods. One with a 30.06 (which is a rifle) and the other with a 20-gauge shotgun. When they arrived to a clearing, they saw 30-40 deer. Because of the excitement of one hunter, he told his friend, lets use the shotgun and maybe we can hit almost every deer in the clearing. The other hunter said, “but we won’t kill any of them that way … let’s use the 30.06 for then we can at least get one, maybe even two.” The other said, “yes, but if you use the 30.06, all the rest of them will get away.” The dilema is, do we want the satisfaction of knowing we hit every deer in the clearing even though it means that all of them get away, or do we want the satisfaction of bringing home one or possibly two deer, knowing that in so doing we left the rest untouched? I am sure that we would be unanimous in our decision to use the 30.06 rather than the shotgun. (page 71).

Wow, that really hit me. I can either try to do all the work myself trying to hit as many as possible, or I can assure to at least get one or two. Therefore my conclusion is … don’t get off target of the real responsibility. Jesus trained 12 and they impacted the world. Moses raised up Joshua and he carried on the work. Elijah prepared Elisha and he made a great impact for our Lord. And the list goes on. The point … the great crowds look good, but after there is no more food for the multitude, will they leave … or will there still be men trained and left behind to carry on the work? Don’t make a missionary mistake in this area!

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