Jesus’ instruction in Acts 1:8, where He says that we are to be His witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the ends of the earth, provides an essential guideline for our mission and testimony in the world.
First, this principle reminds us that our mission should begin locally, in our immediate surroundings. Jerusalem can serve as a symbol for our hometown, our community, our family, and our workplace. We should first reach the people in our vicinity and be witnesses for Jesus by embodying His love and message in our daily lives.
Second, Jesus’ instruction shows that our mission is not bound by geographical or cultural boundaries. We are to carry the message of the Gospel to Judea and Samaria, which may mean reaching people from different cultural, linguistic, or ethnic backgrounds. It encourages us to step out of our comfort zone and address the needs and challenges of other groups.
The challenge of identifying which groups of people with special needs have not been reached in our community is an important task. This allows us to pray specifically and seek ways to engage in the mission for these groups. The “Challenge Plus” goes a step further and encourages us to actively seek opportunities to engage in the mission for people with special needs.
Overall, Jesus’ principle reminds us that our mission should be far-reaching and inclusive. We should be willing to overcome our comfort and preferences to bring the love and the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all people, regardless of their background, culture, or needs. It is a reminder that we are all called to be witnesses for Jesus by shining His light into the darkness of the world.