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From the Coordinator: What Will We Endure for the Great Commission?

What does radical love and generosity look like? My wife was speaking to a Chinese woman at her local Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) earlier this year. The woman was getting updates on the coronavirus directly from friends and family in China through social media. She said that the city of Wuhan, the epicenter of the coronavirus, shut down its borders early on after the outbreak. They would not allow people to come in or out of the city. The problem was that about 5 million Wuhan citizens were outside the city when they closed the roads in or out. Where would these 5 million people go? Where would they stay?

She went on to describe how Chinese Christians began opening their homes to these strangers, letting them stay with them without cost, putting themselves at great risk. The guests of course were wondering, “What would compel these Christians to be so kind, so generous, and so self-sacrificing?” We know the answer. It’s Jesus. He is the One who welcomed us when we were strangers. He is the One who not only risked, but sacrificed His life for us, for our safety, for our salvation. And He is the One who commissions us to proclaim His gospel of the kingdom in word and deed.

What has always been interesting to me is how Jesus healed the sick, the diseased, the lepers. While He certainly could have stayed at a safe distance and merely spoken the word, in most cases He comes close and touches those who need healing (Matt 8:1-4; 14-15; 9:18-26; 29-31). In doing so, He puts himself at great risk. Jesus enters into the suffering, shame, and isolation of the most vulnerable. He takes their disease, uncleanness, and infirmities and replaces them with his perfect, spotless, cleanness.

This is the pattern He sets for us, who have experienced the transforming power of the gospel. “He took our illnesses and bore our diseases” (Matt 8:17). What then are we willing to risk for the sake of others? What are we willing to endure to carry out our Lord’s Great Commission? Our challenge is to enter into the suffering, shame, and sickness of the most vulnerable with the healing love and generosity of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Would you join us in this high calling from our Lord? Would you pray that the gospel of the kingdom would advance throughout the world?

Lloyd Kim, Reflection Mar 31, 2020
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