“The Great Reset” is a popular term these days, and understandably so perhaps, as we stare down a global financial crisis bigger than the Great Depression. There is no use indulging in wishful thinking that life will return to the way it was in the “good ole days” before the pandemic. Is there good news in the midst of this?
I think so.
We have been living the “good life” here in the West for a very long time. Our lives are comfortable — nay extravagant — often with large houses, multiple cars per household, and almost everything our hearts could desire in the material realm. So yes, it is time for a great reset: a great mental reset to a more missionary mindset.
As Scripture teaches, we are living in the last days: the signs of this are all around us, and hallelujah for that! Our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. (Romans 13:11)
Let me challenge you with a thought. Given the days we are living in, it is time to trim the fat in all respects. Getting fit physically is a good start — something that requires losing some kilos and exercising more. But it’s also time to trim the fat regarding excess belongings. If you are not using something, sell it and buy Gospel tracts and New Testaments, or give to missionaries so they can get the job done.
As I see it, we are close to the Gospel being preached in all the world for a witness before the end. (Matthew 24:14) We all have a part to play, and the more you invest in the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20), the more treasures you will lay up in Heaven, where moth and rust cannot corrupt, and thieves cannot break through and steal. (Matthew 6:19-21)
The persecution of Christians is coming. Christians may be persecuted in one city (dare I suggest Melbourne?) and have to flee to the next (Matthew 10:23). Now is the time to recall and be encouraged by stories from saints like Corrie ten Boom, who hid people in her home — or Count Zinzendorf, who set up his estate as a prayer centre and a missionary-sending headquarters. It is time to practically head towards a Book of Acts lifestyle. The end is nigh, and “the night cometh when no man can work” (John 9:4). We don’t want to hear “the harvest is past, and we are not saved” (Jeremiah 8:20).
Brothers and sisters, the world has changed. It’s time to pray more, give more and witness more. We are reminded of those words from Scripture that “many prophets and righteous men have desired to see these days” (Matthew 13:17). These saints of old are cheering us on in “the great cloud of witnesses” (Hebrews 12:1). This time between Resurrection Sunday and Pentecost is a great time for a Great Missionary Reset.
I have been reading missionary biographies of late, stories told by the China Inland Mission, of Corrie ten Boom, Brother Andrew, Peter, Paul. These inspiring men and women were God’s workers who were free of material encumbrances to go “where the wind blows” (John 3:8). They were compelled to spread the Good News and to tell of Christ’s imminent return to gather His own.
Brothers and sisters, there are adventures ahead that will require us to live by faith. Though we must be discerning about the Bible’s specific predictions, “the mark” of Revelation 13:16-18 may be coming sooner rather than later. What’s certain is that Babylon — the world-system raised up in defiance of God — is gaining strength.
It is time to embrace “The Great Missionary Reset” — and even to redeem some of the language we are hearing. Let us embrace a lifestyle where “you will own nothing and you will be happy” — but for the kingdom! Let us be encouraged by the Scriptures that command us to “in everything give thanks” and “work the works of Him that sent us while it is day, for the night cometh when no man can work” (John 9:4). Who knows if this is our last year as a church above ground? That might sound like an extreme prediction, but consider that in 2019 you would never have believed the events of recent times if they’d been told to you in advance.
I have lived in mission centres for about 30 years. Nine of those years I spent in the Third World; seven of those in the Philippines. We lived by faith selling Christian books and CDs, doing Christian TV and projects for the poor. We were footloose and fancy-free for Jesus!
Let us invest more in the kingdom. The Bank of Heaven is the only safe place to keep your treasures these days: not gold, not Bitcoin. Praise the Lord!
[Photo by Ben White