|Friday:||A Plan for Missions|
|Bible Lesson:||Prayer Warrior: We should be praying; prayer is effective. (Peter in prison)|
|Memory Verse:||1st Thessalonians 5:16-18|
|Missions Concepts:||Missionaries must prepare to go and must plan for the work.|
|Missions Examples:||Uberlandia, Brazil: Project Timothy|
|Bible Passages:||Luke 14:25-33|
Introduction: What to do?
How many of you remember learning about our missionaries in Brazil last year? [show map] We learned about Magno who teaches kids at the schools about Jesus. How do missionaries like Magno decide what they are going to do today? Do they wake up and pack their bags and move to a new city? Do they leave their Bible study and start a new one? How do they choose where to go and when? They have a plan.
The Tubelina church in Brazil has a plan. They want to start churches in many neighborhoods all around their big city (Uberlandia). They have men that are studying to be pastors and missionaries in their church, but where will these men go, and who will be a pastor and who will be a missionary? The men and the leaders of the church talk together and pray before anything happens. While the men are still studying, before they are even ready to go, they start praying for the place where they are going to go. Some go home to the neighborhoods they grew up in. Others go to a different neighborhood, or a nearby city (like Magno, who went to Araguari). The church makes a plan so that all the new Pastors have places to go, and so that they don't all go to the same neighborhood!
The Point: Missionaries need a plan.
In the book of Luke, Jesus gives an example. He tells the crowd that if they were going to build a tower it would be a good idea to make sure they have a plan – to know how big they're going to build the tower and how much it will cost – before they start. Otherwise, they might not be able to finish, and people would just laugh at them, and what good would that be? Jesus wasn't just talking about a real tower, though: it's an example. He's really talking about God's work. When we set out to do something, we should make sure we know what we have to do before we start, so that we can finish. We should know how much it is going to cost, so that we can afford to finish. We need to know what we are going to do so that it works out well. If we know how much it costs, we know how much money we need to save up before we start. If we know ahead of time what we have to do, we'll be less likely to forget something important.
Tuesday, we learned that a missionary needs to be approved and sent by a church to do missions. One of the things our Foreign Mission Panel tells missionaries they have to have is a written plan. The plan has to tell where they are going, what they are going to do, and how long they are going to spend on it. The Pastors on the panel are not giving the missionaries homework for no reason. The written plan is important because it helps the churches who are sending the missionaries, praying, and sending money. It helps the churches to know how to pray and where the money is going. It also is important for the missionary himself to have a plan so that he knows what to do every morning. He knows what his goal is and that helps him do a better job.
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.