By Randy Brock
In the economic wake of COVID-19 we have been hearing a lot about the word “stimulus.” In fact, on a recent afternoon I was driving down the road wondering what the holdup was on my stimulus check. Others were receiving theirs, so where was mine? Ever had those conversations with yourself and then had God interrupt?
In the middle of these thoughts the Lord reminded me that earlier that day I had been reading about and praying for needs of our brothers and sisters on the mission field. He asked me, “Who is going to send them a stimulus check? Where is theirs?” Then, “Why don’t you send them a stimulus check?”
Thus the Open Bible Stimulate Missions challenge was birthed. I asked our church congregation to consider those who will receive no check in the mail and no deposit into their bank account. I asked them to dream big and listen with me to what God is saying regarding the money He is placing in our hands right now. The size and scope of our effort is in God’s heart, but His provision is placed in our hands.
This encounter with the Lord not only stimulated me personally, but it has stimulated our church in so many ways. Amid this pandemic crisis our regular tithes and offerings are up ten percent, and we raised $43,000 in addition to our budgeted missions support, which found its way to Mexico, India, Taiwan, Trinidad, Romania, Nicaragua, Eastern Europe, and West Africa, and to meeting local needs here.
The stimulus to faith is the substance of hope”
The size of our vision is only limited by the size of our ask. We can do more, give more, and love more than our minds can comprehend. COVID-19 is a disruption, but not an interruption of our mission. Finding a way is what drives faith.
One day I fell into a fishing hole while trying to get to a prime fishing spot where I was sure the “big one” lay in wait. I did not just get a little wet. I was soaked from head to toe, losing my hat and compromising my gear in the process, but did that stop me from fishing? No. As I was climbing out of that hole ready to catch the next one, God spoke to me in my soggy and muddy attire: THIS is the SUBSTANCE of things hoped for.
The stimulus to faith is the substance of hope. Without it we cannot please God. It takes all of us, folks. Loving God, investing in people . . . it’s what we do.
About the Author
Randy Brock has been a minister with Open Bible for a total of 24 years and is currently the lead pastor at Open Bible Church of Rapid City in Rapid City, South Dakota.