The Unplanned Missionary

Image for The Unplanned Missionary

Adventist Frontiers is all about mission stories. This story is not about our AFM missionaries. It is from the Bible. I’m sure most of you know the New Testament stories of Paul, Barnabas, Silas and John Mark. This story is not about them.

This is an Old Testament story about a young man who had no plans to become a missionary when he started out on his journey to visit his brothers and check on them for their father. His brothers had no plans to help him become a missionary when they grabbed him, threw him in a pit and then sold him as a slave to traders on their way to Egypt. 

Of course, this story is about Joseph. Everyone who knows Joseph’s story knows that he was the favored son; his ten older brothers did not like him and wanted him out of their lives.

On the way to Egypt, Joseph decided that he would live his life in obedience to God as his father Jacob had taught him. When he reached Egypt, he was sold to Potiphar, the captain of Pharaoh’s guard. While he was with Potiphar, his decision to follow God resulted in blessings for the entire household and led Potiphar to make him steward in charge of everything.

When Potiphar’s wife falsely accused Joseph of wrongdoing, he was sent to prison. Again, his decision to follow God resulted in blessings, and he was also put in charge there.

When two of the prisoners had strange dreams, God gave Joseph the interpretations. Later, Joseph was asked to interpret dreams for Pharaoh. God’s gracious provision led Pharaoh to put Joseph in charge of the country, second only to Pharaoh himself.

For years, Joseph met and worked with many people as a result of his different positions, presenting him with many opportunities to be a missionary. First at Potiphar’s house, then in prison, then with Pharaoh, his court, the entire country of Egypt and regions beyond and, finally, everyone who reads his story in the Bible.

We have no idea how many people were led to follow God as a result of Joseph’s unplanned mission service that began when he decided to follow Him.
Even more extraordinary — immeasurable — is what God can accomplish through willing missionaries. Making a purposeful decision to engage in missions may not mean moving to a foreign land. You can be a prayer warrior for those who are overseas. You can financially partner with AFM through regular gifts of income or planned giving.

Please prayerfully consider how God would have you be a willing missionary to the unreached. If you are unable to serve overseas, perhaps He is inviting you to support those who can.