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Embracing Local Ministry

The man from whom the demons had gone out begged to go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying, “Return home and tell how much God has done for you.”
—Luke 8:38-39

Jesus was traveling in the area of Gerasenes when He met a man possessed with a demon. This demon tortured the man, forcing him to live among the tombs and walk around naked. Nothing could stop the power of this demon over the man’s life…until that day.

Having compassion for the man, Jesus orders the spirit out and into a herd of pigs. The demon then sends the pigs over the edge of a cliff into the sea where they all drown.

When the people in the town of Gerasenes hear of this, they come to the cliffs. They see the demon-possessed man now clothed and in his right mind. Fear falls on the crowd, and they beg Jesus to leave.

As Jesus is stepping back into the boat, the man he healed stops him. “What about me?” he asks. “Let me come with You and tell others about what You’ve done!”

But Jesus tells him to stay where he is, instructing the man to return home so he can tell others what God has done.

Thanks to social media, it’s easy to see global ministries. You watch as missionaries travel to some of the most remote regions of the world. You see them in third-world countries, ministering to the tired and sick.

But God doesn’t call everyone to build His Kingdom globally. He asks many of His disciples to minister right where they are.

It’s important to understand that ministering from a local place doesn’t make your work any less valuable. You have the opportunity to share the life-changing power of the Gospel with your neighbors, co-workers, and friends.

 

God, help me to remember that I’m called to minister right where I am. Just as the demon-possessed man went on to minister locally, let me share the healing and hope found in Your name with my community. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

Luke 8:38-39

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