Jesus Christ’s parting words to His followers, as recorded in the gospel of Matthew, were words envisioning a global task, an all-inclusive, world-wide mission to make disciples of all the nations. (The Great Commission; Matthew 28:18-20) This command has been handed down by the Lord to each successive generation of believers. Therefore, we are to go into all the world (starting with where we are) and proclaim the gospel message, the good news of forgiveness and eternal life through genuine belief in Jesus Christ. Then, we are to baptize those who respond in faith to this message, and diligently teach them how to wholeheartedly walk and live in the ways of God.
We understand that missions is the conduit which carries the gospel message. According to the word of God, personal mission’s involvement is a non-negotiable reality of the Christian faith—we must go where we can go and we must send others where we cannot go ourselves. Therefore, beyond the corporal, teaching, and other vital ministries of our church, we have utterly committed ourselves as a congregation of believers to at least one formal mission trip per year, balancing local and distant destinations as modeled by the New Testament. For example, we have frequently traveled the neighborhoods, byways, and highways of Ridgeway (our hometown) as well as journeyed to the states of Virginia, Montana, Florida, New Mexico, West Virginia, Michigan, Kentucky, and to the countries of Canada and Peru.
We have learned that it does not take a big church to accomplish big things for God, but it does take a big heart for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The Scriptures say, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth” (Acts 1:8).