Innocent of the Blood

 

 

How do you measure the success of a trip?  There are several ways.

Brother Breck asked us on the first day of the trip how many people would need to get saved for the trip to be considered a success? Most answered one. The correct answer is zero. He shared with us that if we were obedient in serving God and sharing our faith, then the trip would be a success. We could not save anyone; only God could. By this definition, the trip was a success.

I shared with them my theme verses for a mission trip. It is in Acts 20:17-27

17 From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church. 18 When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia. 19 I served the Lord with great humility and with tears and in the midst of severe testing by the plots of my Jewish opponents. 20 You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house. 21 I have declared to both Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus.
22 “And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. 23 I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. 24 However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace.
25 “Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again. 26 Therefore, I declare to you today that I am innocent of the blood of any of you. 27 For I have not hesitated to proclaim to you the whole will of God.

I asked to team to consider this as our measure of success.

To serve the Lord with humility and tears in spite of our circumstances.

To declare to everyone who enters the clinic about our Lord Jesus.

To declare that we are innocent of the blood of anyone we came in contact with this week.

If people came through the clinic and did not receive Christ, it was not because we didn’t do everything we knew to do. We showed God’s love to them by providing medical care and shared with everyone who would allow us to.  At the end of the week, we declared we are innocent of the blood of the people we served this week. There were many tears shed by our team for people who did not accept the gospel but there was also rejoicing for those who did, including several of our translators.

We don’t measure success based on numbers, but they do represent a new believer in the kingdom, so in that respect they are of eternal significance. We had around 230 people profess Jesus as their Savior and Lord this week and we give Him all the glory.

God not only worked through us, but He worked in us as well. I saw people share their faith for the first time with tears in their eyes as they discovered for the first time their real purpose in life; to declare the gospel of Jesus Christ to a lost and dying world. When people go on a mission trip for the first time, their focus is on serving others. They are quick to discover that God usually does more IN them than He does THROUGH them. They are determined to take this mission mentality back home.  Lives will be changed forever.

Yesterday we got to visit the Great Wall and Alicia Vickers took this picture which represents our purpose this week. It was a beautiful reminder of what the Lord is doing in this country.

Thank you so much for all of you who prayed for us and contributed to this trip. We are grateful.

We had a successful trip.

To God be the Glory

 

Terry Westmoreland




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