Back in September of 2010, I blogged about my experience volunteering on a project design trip with Engineering Ministries International (eMi) to Samfya, Zambia. It was there that I began to realize my place in a much larger picture that God was painting. As I had a chance to sit down and hear from a man named Charles who is a graduate of the Bible School we were there to serve, I started to truly understand how integrated the body of believers must be in order to effectively reach the nations as we are commissioned to do. It started to make sense why the Bible does not make light of its mention of us all being gifted by the grace of God to do certain things well and that we are to dedicate ourselves to excellence in the things we are gifted to do instead of coveting the gifts of others.
Charles’ ministry was to a people that I could not possibly reach with the gospel without dedicating my entire life to learning the language and the culture. Even then, I could still not be as effective in reaching them as someone like Charles. But, what God HAS given me the grace to do is to use my technical expertise to help provide ministries like Samfya Bible School with engineering designs that will help equip them in a practical way to train and send out more leaders like Charles to reach these areas that are effectively out of my reach. Equipping the local church to be the hands and feet of Christ!
But, God’s portrait isn’t done there! Before me were people that prepared me professionally and spiritually through teaching and mentoring, financial sponsors that helped send me, friends that helped shape me, a wonderful bride who loves and supports me, and parents who raised me according to Biblical standards (just to name a few). All of these people are also pieces of the same much larger picture. Beyond Charles and those like him in Zambia and around the world are countless other pieces of the same picture (most of which I will never even know on this side of eternity). All of these pieces, spanning to ALL people, across ALL cultures, are somehow connected in an amazingly integral way, just like a puzzle. Some of the pieces in the puzzle will look very similar (think sky or tree puzzle pieces) or in God’s puzzle may even match exactly as we allow God to use us over and over, in even more strategic ways (eagerly desiring every spiritual gift as can be most beneficial to serve and love people). However, regardless of how many times we allow God to place us in this puzzle, none of the pieces can be considered an accurate depiction the entire picture alone.
God continues to place each piece of the puzzle with diligent care until FINALLY He places the last piece and steps back to view the completed masterpiece exactly as He had originally envisioned it…a picture of Him reconciling the world to Himself, using His people to reach the nations for His glory! Then just like the loving Father He is, He calls His children to come close and view the masterpiece with Him as He leans in to say, “Well done!”
I am excited to be a part of God’s plan with you all!