The 31st Atlantic Union Conference Constituency Session is history. Delegates made their decisions about who will serve for the next five years. They also received reports concerning the work in the union territory for the past six years. Now that all has been said and done, the question is, “What is next?”
If we have decided to become comfortable thinking that things are all set for the next five years, we have missed an important message. In his devotional “The Window is Open,” G. Alexander Bryant, North American Division president, reminded us that we have an opportunity to be like Jesus and get the word out to the world because “the window of God’s grace is open.”
The question “What is next?” was answered as far back as when the commission was given to Jesus’ disciples while He was with them on earth. “And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, ‘All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age’ ”—Matthew 28:18-20 (NKJV).
If “United We Will Go,” the theme for the Atlantic Union session, is any indication of what is next for the members in this territory, then I believe it is safe to say that we should be more determined than ever to focus on being ambassadors for Christ. The promise from God is that “This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come”—Matthew 24:14 (NKJV). One thing is certain, the gospel will be preached with or without us.
Watching the news on television or the Internet is becoming increasingly difficult and sometimes heart-wrenching. In our church, school, and home circles, our families, friends, and neighbors are facing challenges such as never before. Scripture reminds us that, “There shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation”—Daniel 12:1 (NKJV). This is why we need to “Be sober, be vigilant; because [our] adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour”—1 Peter 5:8 (NKJV). We need to stay constantly in prayer and focused on our Savior and Friend.
Take a look around. Most of us know people who are in need of hope. We know people who need help to meet their basic needs. God is looking for people who are willing to let Jesus be seen through them and who are willing to be His hands and feet. That is us—you and me.
While the “window of God’s grace is open,” we need to take the opportunity to share the gospel message with family, friends, those in our community, and beyond. We have no guarantee when the window will close, but we know that “He who endures to the end shall be saved”—Matthew 24:14 (NKJV).
The opportunity is available now for each of us. We should seize this moment and let God use us for His honor and glory. Remember, as we go forward in the name of the Lord, He reminds us: “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand”—Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV). As ambassadors for Christ, this is our moment to shine.