Over the past few years First Baptist Church of Metropolis has made a tremendous impact in the area of foreign missions. We have sent dozens of groups to places like Haiti, China, Great Britain, and West Africa to spread the good news of Jesus Christ. In Niger we have helped to impact an unreached people group and in Haiti we have begun to build a relationship with a church to help the gospel spread in that under reached nation. This Sunday we will begin to collect our Annual Lottie Moon Christmas offering for foreign missions and I would like to challenge each of you to make a greater investment in the word of missions than you have ever made before. According to the International Mission boards website there are currently 6,524 unreached people groups in the word. Statistics from the Joshua project show that these group represent over 2.8 billion people who have little or no access to the gospel. The goal of the Southern Baptist Convention is to make sure that everyone of these people groups has the opportunity to hear the gospel. This is where we our church comes in.
One hundred percent of the money collected through the Lottie Moon Christmas offering goes to the foreign mission field. The money that we give helps to send missionaries to those who have never heard the gospel. According to the IMB website it costs and average of $49,800 per year to keep one missionary on the field. That breaks down to $4150 per month, $958 a week, or $136 per day. This year I would like to challenge us to think about our Lottie Moon Christmas offering in terms of how many months or weeks can we sponsor one missionary on the field. My dream would be to see us as a church be able to collect enough to keep one missionary on the field for an entire year. Think about the impact that this could have on the spread of the gospel. By providing the financial resources for one missionary for an entire year, we could help to reach one of those 6,524 unreached people groups. If churches across the convention would collectively adopt this same strategy we could see the task of world evangelization accomplished in our lifetime. But it all begins with each individual and family deciding that this year they will give sacrificially to the Lottie Moon Christmas offering.
Before you decide what to give I would like to ask you to sit down with your family to talk about these numbers and the impact your could make by giving sacrificially to the Lottie Moon Christmas offering. Pray for God’s guidance and blessing as we all do our individual parts in making an impact on the number of unreached people groups. Finally, praise God for the work that is happening around the world and the opportunity that He has given us to be on mission with Him. People who have never heard the name of Jesus Christ are going to hear the gospel and be saved this year because of what you are going to give to the work of foreign missions this Christmas season.