Our missionaries working overseas in the harvest are not alone. They have families that work alongside them. Husbands, wives, and children are engaged in the work of learning a new culture and language, translating the scriptures, helping locals build businesses that better support their families, and much more. And a major part of this work is accomplished by missionary children.
The Scripture says... Blessed are all who fear the Lord, who walk in obedience to him. They will eat the fruit of their labor (Bible translation, community development, church planting); blessings and prosperity will be theirs. His wife will be like a fruitful vine within his house; his children will be like olive shoots around his table. Yes, this will be the blessing for the man who fears the Lord. (Psalm 128 paraphrased)
Not only do we expect to see and want to see new language groups coming to faith in Jesus Christ, but we also want to see our children joining the Kingdom of God. I heard the shocking story of a missionary who spent many years in the field preaching and teaching the story of Jesus to others, only to see his children all turn their backs on God. He made this remark when someone asked him about it, “At least many of the natives came to faith in Jesus Christ.”
Are you and I okay with spending a lifetime ministering in Kingdom work and seeing many join God’s Kingdom while our children go subtly neglected and drift away? I think I hear a resounding, NO! Let us pray and minister not only to the target group but also to the little ones around our tables.
And to those who send and support them: Let us be committed to regular intercession for the oncoming generation and show support through regular mail, phone calls and even visits when appropriate.Harold R Troyer