"The Heavenly Harvest"
January 18, 2013
(Jesus said) "And this Gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations ...." Matthew 24:14a
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
The salvation story of Jesus Christ reaches around the world. So that the readers of our Daily Devotion may see the power of the Savior on a global scale, we have asked the volunteers of our International Ministry Centers to write our Friday devotions. We pray that the Spirit may touch your day through their words.
In Christ, I remain, His servant and yours,
Kenneth R. Klaus
Speaker Emeritus of The Lutheran Hour
December 21st, 2012, was predicted to be the end of the world.
Everybody -- depending on their point of view and thinking -- made preparations for that event.
For example, some people bought a lot of food to store in their house so that they would be able to have enough to eat. Others found the safest shelters for their families and themselves. Some people even tried to fly to the place where it was thought the end of the earth would begin.
Along with the plans of people, businesses took advantage of the prediction to launch advertising campaigns, with the hope they might turn a good profit. Amazingly, very few people in the world thought about what they would do when they did see God.
Now you and I know the predicted end of the world has come and gone. Nothing happened. Wonderful.
Still, I would like to stop here for a moment and ask have you really been touched by Christ's command to share and humanity's need to hear the Gospel? Jesus charged Christians with "preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom to all nations" so that the wedding feast of the Lamb will be full (see Matthew 22:1-10; Luke 14:16-23).
Although the results come by the Holy Spirit's work, the Lord still encourages our witness and prayers. Why prayer? Praying opens up the path for God to bless the preaching. Praying also preserves the Spirit-won harvest.
Now you may not be healthy enough to be an evangelist like the apostles. You might also say, "I am not as diplomatic as others to preach the Gospel." This may be true. You may have limitations. But, if you are completely dedicated to sharing the Savior, our God will surely make a way. He will use you to bring His grace and love to your neighbors. Please, I encourage you:
1. Send your prayers to the Lord on behalf of organizations and missionaries who are proclaiming the Savior and His blood-bought salvation.
2. Ask Him to use those prayers to plough the fields and water the harvesting.
3. Plead with Him to use those prayers to change the attitudes of governments that oppose Jesus.
Your prayers can work. This past Christmas we saw prayer change the life of a man who was a driver for a company, which rents cars. He took our singers to Long An and Tuy Hoa for our presentation. We talked to him on the way and invited him to watch the Lord's work. After the first presentation, he confessed his sin and was brought to faith in Jesus Christ, by the power of Holy Spirit. Soon after he asked to join our team and help with technical work.
Yes, we know the power of prayer because we know the power of God. Please, join us in those prayers.
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, use me to reach out in Jesus' Name to my relatives, neighbors, colleagues, acquaintances and those I see in daily life. Help them to become saved like me. And, Heavenly Father, please keep me faithful in praying for the sake of Your Kingdom. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Biography of Author: Today's international devotion was written by Mr. Dinh Hai Au, the acting director of the Lutheran Hour Ministries office in Vietnam. He has won numerous awards, including "Teacher of Distinction" and "Teacher of the Year." Working under unusual and difficult circumstances he must be both creative and innovative in his presentations. He shares some of that work today. Working in a country where atheism is the semiofficial religion and religious work cannot be done off church grounds, creativeness is this office's stock-in-trade. Puppet shows, music evangelism, Bible Correspondence Courses (BCC), and Equipping The Saints (ETS) have all proven to be most successful. Please remember them in your prayers, as they work with local congregations in reaching a nation where Jesus is officially rejected.
To learn more about our International Ministries, click here or visit www.lhmint.org.
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries