How To Be A Real Missionary (Numbers 3)

Chapter Summary:

I was constantly stressed when I was in high school.

Well, maybe not constantly, but it sure felt that way. There was always something on my plate that made me nervous and unsure of myself. And it had nothing to do with school. I was constantly stressed out about church.

I was active at my church when I was a teenager, not because I was thrilled to serve God and share with others, but because I didn’t want to say no. One time my youth group held elections for leadership positions within the group. I was nominated to be Health Ministries leader. I said yes. Later, I wouldn’t shut up about how stressed and freaked out I was for the position. One of my friends was like “Why didn’t you just say no?”.

In that moment I felt so stupid. I felt even dumber later on in the year when I looked up and realized that I had done absolutely nothing as Youth Health Ministries leader. Which was worse, saying “no” to an opportunity to serve, or saying “yes” to an opportunity that I wasn’t right for?

The Levites seemed to fit right in to their roles as God’s priests. This chapter is all about how they were organized. For example, the different families that made up the Levite tribe each had different checklists when it came time to setup and take down the tabernacle.

The Gershonites were responsible for all the tabernacle curtains and coverings (verse 25). The Kohathites cared for the stuff that went inside the tabernacle, like the table and the lampstand and the altars (verse 31). The Merarites made sure the tabernacle would stand by handling structural things, like the posts and bases and tent pegs (verses 36-37).

It sounds like the Levites served God together in perfect harmony. #servicegoals, right? But is that even possible today?

The Treasures Within:

Have you ever been on some kind of service trip or outreach project and felt absolutely useless? I have stories about those kind of experiences for days.

Like the time a bunch of young people from my church showed up at a nursing home and they literally had NO IDEA what to do with us, so some of us ended up just vacuuming for an hour.

Or how every single time I went around with my youth group knocking on doors, I always ended up standing in the back, saying the least words.

Or my attempts to get children to pay attention to me while they flocked to some friend of mine who happened to be absolutely perfect with kids.

Please tell me I’m not the only one. Christians have this thing where they promote and praise very specific kinds of service. Pastors. Doctors and nurses. Missionaries to foreign countries. Colporteurs. Those are the people on the “front lines”, those are the people doing “real mission work”.

But what about the rest of us? We’re over here looking wistfully at the Levites, who were told from the start exactly what God wanted them to do with their lives. Some of us want that same energy.

But the Levites were priests, it’s different!

The priesthood was symbolic of the original High Priest Jesus, so…

These things are true. The priesthood is a deep, fascinating concept full of symbolism that points all the way down through history to the Second Coming.

But still, the Levites were chosen to be part of that. Doesn’t God do the same thing today?

Pastors of all backgrounds, male and female, are being called to join the ministry. And seeing young people from all over the world pledge to be missionaries in countries you’ve never even heard of – it’s a beautiful, inspiring thing.

Yet those aren’t the only people God calls.

God called the Kohathites to something as simple as dusting the furniture. That shows two things: one, that God calls everyone and two, that God cares about every service, no matter how small.

That means if you’re singing in a choir, God cares.

That means if you’re vacuuming a floor in a nursing home, God cares.

That means if you’re sharing  Bible verses on social media, God cares.

It also means that God has a specific plan and purpose for you. He’s not any less specific with us than He was with the Israelites! So even if you’re not a doctor or a missionary or a pastor, there is something God wants you to do to bring Him glory, to save souls, and to hasten His coming. Isn’t that a relief?

God’s Message To Us:

“I know you.” Not only does God call each of us in specific ways, but He calls each of us in different ways. He never intended for us all to do one thing for Him – God is a God of variety!

Everyone can’t sing. Everyone can’t preach. Everyone isn’t good at engaging people they don’t know in conversation. Everyone isn’t good with kids.

And trying to force ourselves to fit the “real” service roles when we just don’t, might be worse than doing something else.

But what is that something else? If not those things, then what is it that God wants us to do for Him?

God knit us together in the womb – that means our talents and gifts came directly from Him. He knows us inside and out. He knows what we’re good at. He knows what we love to do. He knows what will light us up and fill our days with joy.

So let’s ask Him. We don’t have to be exactly like the latest ministry poster child we saw up front at church. We only have to be exactly what Jesus wants us to be. And He will lead us there. So where is God calling you? What has He blessed you with? What has God asked you, and only you, to do for Him?

What do you think? Do you think that everyone’s witness is different? Or are there some forms of witnessing that everyone should take part of? How do you share God? Comment below and share this with your friends!

2 thoughts on “How To Be A Real Missionary (Numbers 3)

  1. Remember, however, that God fits us for the work He wants us to do. So sometimes we don’t want to do something because we don’t think we’re “good” at it; but God can make us good at it. So we just need to rely on God to lead us, and we need to be willing to say, yes, no matter where He leads.

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    1. Good point! That’s how it was for Moses when God called him. So I think there’s a balance to be had – sometimes God calls us to what we don’t like or aren’t good at, but God’s calls are so varied, and we shouldn’t imagine that our only choices are the most popular ones.

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