Mark 5:19 – “Go Home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.”
I used to beg God to send me as a missionary to one of the darkest places on earth. I’ve heard that some people dread that God might call them to Africa, that wasn’t me. I have several friends who are now on or headed to the mission field, some of them from my own ministry. I have to admit sometimes I wish it were me. Who knows maybe one day God will call me to leave my country and go.
However, the last time God said “Go” it was just an hour away. So we sold our house, uprooted our family and moved an hour away; still in the South, still on the gulf coast, and in a town very much like the one we left. In a sense, we are still home.
I used to think that perhaps we were second rate Christians just trying to reach our neighbors and teenagers and stuff. After all we didn’t have to learn a new language or customs or anything. We just had to find a way past the fence.
I’ve come to find that by comparison it isn’t the darkest place on earth. There are a lot of churches that talk about the gospel here. (note: Have you ever tried to attend one as a guest? I’ve been to various churches my whole life. When we are on vacation it’s still one of the most intimidating things to walk into a new church as a visitor.) But I’ve come to find that there is still a lot of darkness here. There are actually still a lot of people who have never heard the gospel on the gulf coast. I know because I’ve shared with dozens who profess that they have never heard it before.
I used to ask God if I was missing his call. I used to wonder if I was a second rate Christian for going “home” with the gospel. I heard a missionary once say the question isn’t weather or not God is asking us to go, but if He is asking us to stay. I know he was well intended, but even if God calls us to “stay” home with the gospel, He is telling us to “go home” with the gospel. We should always be going with the gospel, even when we are going home.
The demon possessed man at the beginning of Mark 5 found freedom in Jesus and wanted to follow Jesus wherever he went, Jesus instead commissioned the man to “go” home with the gospel. If you are a believer the question isn’t, “should I stay or should I go?” It is, “where has God called me to go with the gospel?” are you sharing the gospel where you are?