When Mennonite Brethren are united, we can be God’s tool
by Don Morris
During the first few months of this year I had some health concerns, including a major surgery plus having my kidney invaded to remove two large kidney stones. I realize that there are people reading this who have dealt with a whole lot more than what I’ve been through. Not having experienced many health problems over the years, this all hit me suddenly and put a halt to much of what I normally do, including traveling to and fro.
Not having been in a hospital bed since I had my tonsils out in 1969, God got my attention. I couldn’t just get up and catch a plane for the next meeting held wherever. My meeting was with God. I had more time than usual to pray and just listen.
I also had more time to read the daily news, much of it about chaos all over the world including here in America. The list included the refugee crisis, famine, terrorism, hate toward Christians, America divided politically, reports about diseases that are now resistant to any antibiotics we have, North Korea firing missile tests, flag burnings, Israeli and Palestinian animosity and sin being glorified by Hollywood. It was a long, ugly list, and it could have been much longer.
Are we living in the final years or decades prior to Christ’s return? Only God knows. Many generations prior to ours believed they were living in the end times. But if we are living in the years close to his return, what must we be about? Do we draw back into a “church-shell” because it’s hard being a Christian in an atmosphere of animosity? Do we go about things as if nothing is changing around the world and here in America—our heads in the proverbial sand? Do we ask our pastors to start preaching from Revelation almost every Sunday?
What? What do we do? What does all the turmoil of a compromised world mean for us as Bible-believing Christians?
Lying in bed, asking God these questions, I’m not sure I heard any definitive answers. Except that the time is now to be the church in action. The time is now to reach more people with the gospel. The time is now to stop squabbling about little things and in unity attack the gates of hell!
In Revelation 7, I love the picture John paints of “a great multitude from every nation, tribe and people and language standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.” Can you see that scene in your mind? It’s a sensational picture of what heaven will be.
But every time I read this passage I think: There will be a great multitude, but there can be more. We have time right now to join Jesus in what he is doing all over the world to make sure that there will be more. When I think of all the pieces that make up the Mennonite Brethren family I realize that God has blessed us with a lot of creative people—that we might have the mechanisms in place to have increasing impact together.
Put all the MB pieces together and God has a remarkable tool to use for his glory. A tool that can and must mean that the crowd standing before the throne of God will be larger than it would have been without us.
Don Morris is the USMB national director. He and his wife, Janna, live in Edmond, Okla., where they attend Cross Timbers Church. He has worked for USMB since 2004.