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Personal Narrative: Am I Like Cain In The Bible

When I first heard the word mission, I automatically pictured in my mind people going to remote areas of the world to build houses or teach in schools. I had a very narrow sense of what the words mission, missionaries or ministry meant or what they entitled. My next thought was, what would compel someone to drop everything; leave their home, family, friends or perhaps a great job with the intention of doing God’s work or sharing God’s word. The phrase “am I my brother’s keeper” immediately rang a bell (Genesis 4:8-10).

Some may say, “Well I am not like Cain in the Bible. ” But yet, in some way we have all acted like Cain. It is my personal observation, that some people become complacent just wearing the title of a Christian. Furthermore, they totalyy disregard the deeds that gives them the right to carry such title. How can I be my brother’s keeper as Christians, if I do not share the gospel? Then again, as a person that believes in God, this writer considers, we re responsible for ministering to others about God’s word, love, and salvation. I will use myself as an example.

When I was a young girl living in Brooklyn, New York, my parents made sure that their children received a Godly education. My siblings and I were all sent to Catholic School. Except that at the time, I did not understand or appreciate what I was receiving as far as education is concerned. I was taught by very strict nuns whom would not hesitate to discipline me when rules were broken. When I attended church, I was often easily distracted, plus I felt as if I did not belong. I would look around thinking to myself, what am I doing here?

I was physically present, but spiritually absent. I was absent because the whole process of going to church and being a Christian at that time was something that I fully didn’t understand. I was on auto pilot; Monday through Friday- school and Sunday- church. I didn’t think about church again or opened the Bible until next Sunday. Attending church, acting like a good person and following the commandments was instilled in me for as long as I could remember, It was expected. Yet, as a young girl, doing those things or behaving in that manner was not important to me.

It wasn’t until later in life, I came to realize that I wore the title of a Christian, however I didn’t lie the life of one. As I reflect on my years at that school, I can honestly say I cannot remember the word mission or ministry being spoken or explained. I shared a small, but very real part in my life, because when I was filling out my school application one of the questions asked was about my ministry. The word confused me. I had to really think about it because no one has ever ask me about my ministry before. I had a hard time applying the word to myself and my life.

As I began to search within me, I remembered something from the Bible that said, “Ministry starts at home” (1 Timothy 3:4). Therefore I can say that looking after my home and family was my ministry; which this writer believes is the most important. Then in order to be able to minister to another, we must keep our family and our house in order emotionally and spiritually. For this reason, in order for me to be my brother’s keeper, I have to put into practice what I have learned thus far in this course. I have learned that we are all our brother’s keeper.

A quote from Martin Luther King, Jr. said it best, “We are inevitably our brother’s keeper because we are our brother’s brother. Whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly. ” I have also learned “where there is not mission, there is no church, and where there is neither church nor mission, there is no faith” (Emil Brunner, quoted in Gailey & Culbertson. 34). A church that has a mission and missions have passion and purpose. In other words, metaphorically speaking, mission is the journey a Christian takes and missions is the destination.

Once we come to the realization that everyone should do their part the share the gospel and the love of God, we are one step closer. Afterwards, we should start by educating ourselves in the word, how to communicate it and how to go about reaching people near and far. We just have to start somewhere. Thankfully, some people already have started somewhere and have gotten very far. There is an increase of missionaries in the world today. We can thank the combined efforts of the determined people of God, mission outreach programs, strategic partnerships, global missionary teams and other organizations for doing their part (Gailey & Culbertson. 8-79).

Unfortunately, not everyone is equipped to go out to nations and spread the gospel. When there is lack of knowledge in ministry souls die. This is confirmed in the Bible under the book of Hosea 4:6 where it states that, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou has forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children. ” In today’s day and time, missionaries are better educated in all cultural aspects in order to spread the gospel.

One way the gospel can be spread is by communication. Furthermore, communication is not just verbal It can be written, nonverbal, or even signed. Language is a learned action and it is very much tied to culture (Gailey & Culbertson. 104-108). Knowledge needs to begin with communication. It is this writer’s opinion that communication is the number one way to share the gospel and it has to be done effectively in order to break down barriers. We cannot forget the power in language. The leading example of power in the word is in the book of Genesis 1-27 when God spoke the universe into existence.

God is love and he speaks the universal language that transcends all cultural barriers (James 4:8, James 1:7). Missionaries must be able to identify with the people they hope to reach. They must invest the time and effort in studying culture (Gailey & Culbertson. 95). When the Bible is presented to others of different cultures in a way that they can understand then they will become more receptive to God’s word. For example in their language, respecting their customs and ideas. Therefore, everyone has the potential, if they stay in the word and in the spirit, to be their brother’s keeper.

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