Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I'll Never Know Enough

I treasure the time I spend in my car, not because I love my car, but because my vehicle is one of the few places where I am usually alone with my thoughts.  And after I dropped my son off at his Milwaukee apartment earlier today, I was able to be alone with my thoughts for the whole ride back to my residence.

During the ride, I focused on a comment I overheard someone make a while back.  What I heard really struck a chord with me at the time.  In fact, the comment made me wonder whether or not I had made the right decision to go on my upcoming mission trip.  You see, the exact comment was, “I could never go on a mission trip.  I don’t know enough,” and I can only guess that the speaker was referencing his or her amount of bible knowledge when making the comment.

Well, if my assumption about the comment’s context is correct, then I guess I might be in deep trouble because I don’t think I know enough, either.  I mean, the bible is a pretty big book, after all.  And more than that, it’s the written word inspired by God.  The bible is a popular book, too, and is so regularly on the bestselling lists that publishers tend to avoid mentioning its position on their lists anymore.  It’s simply a given that it’s on these lists and everybody knows it.

As I drove home, I confirmed my belief that for all of the reasons mentioned above and many others, no one will ever know enough about the bible.  I know that even if I studied the bible for one million years, I would still be unable to claim that I knew enough about the text because, in my mind, that is the same as saying that I know “enough” about God, which I don’t and never will.  At least not in this lifetime.

In retrospect, I wish I’d said something to the people engaged in the conversation I overheard.  I wish I had admitted to them that I, like them, don’t know enough either.  I wish I had told them that despite my failure to know “enough,” I was still going on a mission trip this summer.  I wish I had told them that the only requirement for a believer to go on a mission trip is that the person have a willing heart.

In the Great Commission, God calls on all of us to go, to be missionaries for Him.  He does not include a job description in the Great Commission that mandates that we accumulate vast amounts of knowledge before we serve Him.  He does not pick His missionaries from a special group of well-educated individuals who are expertly versed in the bible.  God calls on all of us regardless of our familiarity with the bible.

If I ever hear someone make a comment similar to the one that recently piqued my interest, I’ll have something to discuss with the speaker.  Now I’m curious about what else I may hear about missionaries and/or mission trips before I depart to do God’s work in Russia…

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