by Dr. Dave Coryell; C.E. USA - Executive Director, World C.E. - General Secretary
Distractions. Messages fly through our lives at ever increasing speed. Time races by as countless sirens demand our attention. Distractions pose significant challenges to me every day. I arrange my office and my schedule to minimize distractions in hopes of boosting my attentiveness to what matters. At times this feels like a feeble attempt to single-handedly hold up a dam as the rushing streams of distractions press against it. Distractions bombard us 24/7/365, but we need to stay focused on what really matters.
Remembering to pray for and reach out to people without the life-saving knowledge of Jesus Christ is one of those important matters! The Bible passage, Matthew 9:35-38, speaks to this. In these four verses we are told Jesus was teaching, preaching the good news of the kingdom, and healing people. When he saw a gathered crowd, he had compassion on them. Jesus then turned to his disciples and said, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.”
Jesus’ instructions to us are very clear. Unfortunately, the distractions life brings causes us to forget this important direction. Three years ago, I began challenging audiences wherever I speak to pull out their cell phones. Next I encourage them to set an alarm for 9:38. At least every morning the phone alarm sounds. This alarm cuts through life’s noise, providing a moment to jolt me back to the Lord’s essential message - “Ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into his harvest field!” Finally, I pause and ask God to send out workers. I also ask Him to find in me a heart ready to go into the harvest fields while I direct people toward this important need.
During our time of isolation due to the devastating COVID-19 crisis, people have shrunk back in their outreach efforts. Encouraging news has come from around the world that campaigns through WhatsApp, Instagram, ZOOM meetings and more have allowed gospel level connections to occur in the midst of social distancing. The harvest time is now regardless of the restrictions, challenges, or other distractions we face. Set your alarm for 9:38, then ask the Lord of the harvest to send out workers. Maybe He’ll begin by sending you!