By: Dr. Emiko Van Wie
Are you on a mission?
Maybe you are on a mission to finish the work week alive! Maybe your mission is to solve the case that’s been mystifying you for days, to cure that pet of a disease that’s been plaguing it for months, or to impress a boss who never seems to appreciate you. Maybe your mission is to get your first raise, to own your practice, or to get board certified.
My mission in vet school was to be in the top 10% of my class. After the first year, I accomplished my mission and I was miserable. I studied all the time and slept four hours a night. I was passionate about my church too, serving each Sunday and attending a weekly community group. But all I talked about was my exam or how I didn’t do as well as I thought! So many tears shed over school. I was so consumed by being on top that I was not consumed by Jesus.
What does the word mission mean to you?
CVM is all about mission…it’s part of their name. But unlike the world, mission is not simply a task or assignment to be completed. It is a continuous way of life to draw near to Jesus to become more like him.
The word missions means “sent.”
“Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” – John 20:21-22
Just as Jesus was sent by the Father, the disciples were sent by Jesus. From the beginning, God has been missional. Missional to create man in his image (Genesis 1-2) to change lives and bring people to know him for His glory. We are sent to join God on his mission. As we receive the Holy Spirit and feel his presence we are sent to live on mission.
“Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, preach this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven is near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received, freely you give.” – Matthew 10: 5-8
Once Jesus went into full-time ministry, he went to reach the lost and never looked back. Just as he told his twelve disciples, he has called us to go and preach the Gospel with urgency that Christ is coming. We are to live like Jesus. Live on a mission to make disciples who make disciples.
But how? We aren’t Jesus and we are sinners trying to make it through life! I’ve always heard the people you surround yourself with will influence who you become. Can you imagine what our hearts would be like if we continually surrounded ourselves with God and sought to know him more? We would be on fire to tell everyone about Jesus Christ.
So step one: Let’s read God’s word…a lot. Let’s take the time to stop working so hard and learn who God is. This was wise advice from my mentor in vet school. She asked me to take 20 minutes a day to learn something new about God’s character. I stopped studying (gut wrenching!) and read the Bible.
The result? I stopped having a mission to be on the top. I fell passionately in love with others and started discipling girls all around me. The result? I knew God more than I knew the femur of a dog. But I got to see people come to Christ.
How well do you know God? Is there time in your life you need to sacrifice to spend more time getting to know him?
Do you have a mission or goal you want to achieve that doesn’t leave room for God? If so, can you commit to surrendering that goal daily to Christ?
Next step: Let’s be on mission in vet school and in our practices and in every other area of our life. CVM has a reputation for being international missionaries, but they are also missionaries for the unreached people in the U.S. With this as a base, they also use short-term missions to bridge the national mission field to the international mission field. Will you take part?
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witness in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” – Acts 1:8
The disciples asked Jesus if he had returned to restore the kingdom of Israel. Jesus answered bluntly you don’t get to know, but you do get to know you were sent to share the gospel right where you are (for them it was Jerusalem) and then to all ends of the earth. For us today, it means you make your city Jerusalem. And in some spare time you can also reach the ends of the earth on a short-term mission trip.
Not able to participate in a short-term trip but have a heart for what God is doing through them? Support CVM’s short-term missions by giving to our short-term missions program!