Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Seen and Unseen

There are many ways in which the church can reach out in mission, but where do we start?  As the prayer of the Breton fisherman goes "O God, thy sea is so great, and my boat is so small."  The optimist in me responds by saying "But we do have a boat!"  It may be a two-person canoe in the Atlantic, but we've got a boat.  Let's see where we can go and what we can do.

One way I hope the Scottsville Baptist boat floats is by participating in missions both seen and unseen.  'Seen' missions are often tangible.  We often see instant results:  hungry bellies filled, utility bills paid, or children gathered to learn Bible stories.  'Seen' missions is giving bread, doing home repair, and leading a neighborhood VBS.  'Seen' missions is important work.  

'Unseen' missions is important work too; however 'unseen' missions are rarely tangible.  'Unseen' missions are writing grants, supporting an underground church, or searching for trouble we cannot see.  'Unseen' missions is rescuing the hidden. 'Unseen' missions is actively looking for the oppressed.  

Both 'seen' and 'unseen' missions are imperative.  It's not an issue of either/or.  It's both/and.    

Tonight Scottsville Baptist hosted faith-based ministry The Arbor.  The Arbor "endeavor(s) to create a welcoming home, a community of healing, and a peaceful refuge for foreign-born trafficking survivors in Virginia in order to reclaim wholenessfreedom, and life in early 2015."  Currently there is no such home in Virginia that ministers to the particular needs of trafficked persons.  Virginia churches, I hope you will consider inviting The Arbor to talk with your congregation.  Please comment, call, or email if you have questions.  I am eager to connect you.

While the complexities of modern-day slavery are difficult to grasp, it is imperative faith communities step up and help restore trafficked persons in the name of Christ.  The Arbor is 'unseen' missions.  Victims of human-trafficking are all around us, yet remain hidden.  This 'unseen' tragedy survives on its ability to be underground.  Awareness and action are key.  We've all got to play a part in restoration.   Scottsville Baptist boat, let's pray about 'unseen' missions and how we might be part.

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