As a kid, I remember praying, “Lord, I’ll go wherever you want me to go….except to Africa.” I don’t know why I was afraid of going there, but as a kid, that was scary to me. For many of us, we don’t mind serving God as long as He doesn’t uproot us from our way of life. We might pray, “Lord, use me any way you want, but please don’t make me leave my family or this area.” We don’t mind serving, but we don’t want to be a foreign missionary.
One day, as Jesus was ministering to people, He looked up at the crowd waiting for Him to touch them. His heart broke with compassion for them. He turned to His disciples and told them to look at the crowd. He then told them that the harvest was ready to be brought in and that they should pray that God would send more workers to help Him. That tug in your heart to want to be used by God anywhere except abroad is an answer to those prayers.
The great news for those who don’t want to travel far away, is that if you will look up and around you, there is a harvest everywhere you go. In Matthew 10, right after Jesus told them to pray that, He sent them into the harvest. Before they left, in verses 6-7, He told them, “Don’t begin by traveling to some far-off place to convert unbelievers. And don’t try to be dramatic by tackling some public enemy. Go to the lost, confused people right here in the neighborhood” (MSG).
I believe He’s saying that to us. We do t have to travel to a foreign land to find lost people. Start nearby. There’s a Harvest right outside your front door. You don’t have to be an eloquent preacher to help bring in the harvest. You just have to know what God did in your life, and begin telling it to one person at a time. That’s how a harvest is brought in. He’s still looking for laborers. Will you look up, see the harvest, and be willing to help? God is hiring laborers in your neighborhood.