Ministry News and Updates

Going to the Ends of the Earth

Posted by David and Rebecca Ortiz
David and Rebecca Ortiz
David and Rebecca Ortiz have moved from San Antonio, Texas to Paraguay to join the Lord in what He is already ...
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on Saturday, 16 June 2012 in From our Hearts

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8 (NIV)

As Rebecca and I have been meeting with individuals and families to share our hearts for ministry, one of the most rewarding things has been the surprising amount of people who have expressed some varation of, “as soon as you get to Paraguay and get established, we want to come visit and be a part of what God is doing there.”  Considering the fact that some of these people weren’t really sure where Paraguay was on a map before we met with them, it’s a real encouragement to see and hear how God is moving in the hearts of believers to join Him in what He is doing in Paraguay!

Jesus clearly commanded all of his followers to be his witnesses and take the gospel to their immediate neighborhood and spheres of influence (their Jerusalem), to geographic and cultural areas that are slightly outside believers’ ordinary comfort zone (their Judea and Samaria) and to places and situations completely beyond what believers feel they can do (their “ends of the earth”).  There is no limit to what this can look like, from walking down the street to develop relationships with your neighbors with the purpose of sharing Jesus’ salvation with them, to regularly working at a homeless shelter, to ministering to a different socioeconomic neighborhood in your community, to engaging people of other nationalities who live around you, to going on short-term mission trips to Mexico and overseas, or to choosing to live and become part of the culture in another nation for longer periods of time to be the light of Jesus in that part of the world.  The keys to this concept are that first, there is “no limit”, meaning that we should never limit what God can call us to do, and second, God commands us to continuously be his witnesses and share his salvation to the ends of the earth.  No “one and done”, or “checked that one off the list”, just like as parents, we don’t expect our children to obey us once and then never have to obey us again.

For most believers, this is a very scary concept.  But notice what Jesus says in Acts 1:8-He first promises us the power of the Holy Spirit and then He gives us the command to go.  This is great news!  God doesn't expect us to go to the ends of the earth, or even down the street in our neighborhood alone.  He promises us power from the Holy Spirit to accomplish his commands.  This doesn't mean that we won’t experience doubt or anxiety as we prepare to go.  What it does mean is that when we obey, He will be faithful to His promise to give us power via the Holy Spirit to do the good works which He has prepared in advance for us to do (Ephesians 2:10).

As you wait before the Lord and ask Him to show you how you should reach out to your Jerusalem, your Judea and Samaria, and to countries and situations well outside your comfort zone (your “the ends of the earth”), know that He promises you His presence and His power though the Holy Spirit when you obey Him.  Let’s be His light to the world!

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