My favorite ride at Disney World is It’s a Small World. I love to take that boat ride through all of the different cultures–the scenery, colors, costumes, music–somehow they all seem to come together as one.
I feel the same way about Epcot–being able to walk through different “countries” and taste the various flavors of each ethnicity, talk to people from different backgrounds, and see and hear the diversity of architecture, fabrics, flavors, and music is quite a cultural experience.
I often look up at the moon at night and imagine what it looks like from a distant land. Then it occurs to me that it looks the same. Whether I view the moon from my backyard in the country, surrounded by cotton fields and forests, or whether someone views it from a jungle or the Outback or the Sahara, it’s the same moon.
When man rebelliously sought to build a name for themselves, God scattered them over all the earth and confused their language (Genesis 11:1-9). Then through Jesus, God drew all of the world back to Himself. Jesus died for all the world.
John the Baptist saw Jesus and exclaimed, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29).
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”John 3:16-17, NIV, (emphasis mine)
Tell me, do you love the world? I mean, do you really love the world as God has called us to love the world? I don’t mean loving the things of this world. I mean, do you love the people of this world–every tribe, nation, color, language–enough to go and tell them? To pray for them? To financially support those who take the Gospel to them?
“Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'”John 14:6
If we truly believe that He is the only way, then how willing are we to share that way with a world that doesn’t know Him? Do we view other people as part of their “group” or as individuals in need of a Savior?
It really is a small world. Somewhere, probably many times over, there is a woman my age, my size, my abilities and intellect, who lives in some other region of the world. Her skin color is different–her language and customs, too. But, she is married, like I am, and has a son and a daughter whom she loves with every breath. She enjoys music and books and learning. She is social and outgoing, loves the outdoors and birds. But she doesn’t know Jesus. She is just like me, yet without the hope of eternity.
She suffers heartache and pain in this world, yet without the peace that passes understanding. She loses loved ones without the hope of one day being reunited with them. She feels the guilt of sin, yet doesn’t know forgiveness and grace. She will walk outside tonight and look up at the same moon as I, and yet not know the One who formed it.
I am sad for her tonight. Because deep down, I want to be right there with her, to hold her hand, to look in her eyes, and say, “Yes, dear one, there is a Savior.”
Our world is hungry for truth. We can’t let the enemy convince us that it’s not our problem. We can’t think that we Americans are better or more deserving than the rest of the world. Jesus didn’t come to save America. He came to save the world.
I think we have somehow allowed our churches to become clubs of which we are privileged to be members. We feel really good about ourselves if we put some money in the plate for missions and let that be the end of it.
But that’s not the Gospel.
“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”Acts 1:8
“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy spirit, and teaching them to do everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”Matthew 28:19-20
God may not be calling you “to the ends of the earth,” but are you willing to be His witness in your Jerusalem–the grocery store, the post office, the little league stands? Are you willing to intercede for those He does send? Are you willing to give out of your riches (compared to most of the world) so that someone can go in Jesus’ name?
It really is a small world. We are not so different. We may look different, dress differently, talk differently, and even worship differently, but we all have the same need: to know the one true God and be known by Him. In the end, nothing else will matter.
I don’t know her name. I don’t know her story. She may live across the street or across the world. But I know that deep down, she’s just like me. She desperately needs the Savior.