By Donna Neville
I think one of the most heart-impacting stories in the Bible is when King David’s men crept into enemy territory to retrieve water. That was special to David. The story is found in 2 Samuel 23:15, “David remarked longingly to his men, “Oh, how I would love some of that good water from the well by the gate in Bethlehem.”” As the story goes, those men felt such loyalty and deep affection for their leader that they risked their lives to bring that specific water to him!
What an amazing illustration of people going all-out for the things that please their king. Oh, that you and I would have that kind of affection for our Lord! That if the Lord expressed a desire to have water from a certain land or territory that we, like those faithful soldiers, would take the initiative to get to that territory, no matter the cost, and bring to the Lord that which is His heart desires.
Actually, we do have that opportunity every time we invest in missions! The world – the whole world - is the heart of God! The commission remains the same as it was at the Lord’s ascension when He said, “Go,…and make disciples of all the nations…” Matthew 28:19. It was His desire then and now.
He paid the ultimate price for the whole world. “For God so loved the world that He gave…” John 3:16. He gave us the Holy Spirit to empower us. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses….in Jerusalem…and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8. He gave us the “seed” to plant by putting resources in our hands. “For God is the one who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat. In the same way, he will provide and increase your resources and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you. Yes, you will be enriched in every way so that you can always be generous…” 2 Corinthians 9:10,11.
When I was 7 years old, my parents pastored a small church in Santa Rosa, California. I remember hearing my father exhort the congregation to be generous in their giving, for they were “Giving to God”. After the service ended, the offering was locked in the church office. When I asked why it was left there, my folks explained that it was the “Lord’s money”. I concluded in my young imagination that after all of us were gone and the church was locked up, that angels came into our church, picked up the money and took it to the Lord.
It was a few years later that I came to understand that those resources were trusted into our hands to do the work of the Lord. As I continued to mature and learn, I discovered the amazing privilege we have to take a portion of the seeds He has given to us and plant them into world evangelism. Each time we give to the work of the Lord, we are partnering with God’s plan in the earth. By giving to missions we are literally going into territories for our King and retrieving His heart’s desire.
You and I may not be called to put our feet on foreign soil, but we are definitely called to resource those who are. I pray that we all will continue to be affectionate toward our King’s desire and faithful with the seeds He has entrusted us with. I can say with confidence, that He will continue to “give seed to the sower”.
-Donna Neville, Pastor and Founding Co-pastor of Praise Chapel International
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