Recently, one of our missionaries writing a letter home expressed thanks for prayers. I couldn't help but remember how important such reassurances of prayer were to us when we were far away from home, working as missionaries in Brazil. I have often said that prayer was sometimes what kept us going in difficult times. Prayers are so important to the missionary and assurance of prayer energizes.
- Prayer tells missionaries that we consider their work important. Of course they already know that, but it is nevertheless encouraging to hear it!
- Prayer tells missionaries they are not alone in their task. It reminds them they are part of a team and that some of the team is at home in prayer.
- Prayer reminds missionaries that the success of their work doesn't depend on their own efforts. Mission is the work of God and God will bring the increase.
Prayer also does some of these same things for us! When we pray, we realize that we are a part of God's team, and therefore part of the missionary's team. Since it is God who bids us pray, it reminds us that prayer is also God's work and something in which he allows us to be involved.
So become a prayer partner with a missionary of our church as part of the Missionary Sponsorship program.
-- Pastor Peter Mathiasen and his wife, Elna, served as missionaries in Brazil for seventeen years, after which Peter served the ELCIC as Exec. Director of the Division for World Mission and Assistant to the Bishop.