By Pastor Greg Bullard
Many people ask us (Chapel Hill), “Why are you traveling all across the world to Cambodia”? At times, this is just a curious question and at other times people just cannot understand why anyone would actually want to travel across the world to some foreign (overwhelmingly hot) location. They will often cloak this confusion with, “there is so much need here”, or they will enter into debate about the value of short term mission trips. The truth is, we answer in a variety of ways, for not all will necessarily have the same motivation for traveling to Cambodia. John 1:12 says, “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God”. This means two things for us. First it means that all who call on the name of Jesus are children of God and second it means that all who call on the name of Jesus are brothers and sisters. This being true, our motivation for traveling all the way across the world to Cambodia is (in part) to see our brothers and sisters, to be reunited with family; it’s a family reunion of sorts. Today in church we were reminded that,“ In Christ” we have more in common with one other than we do amongst our “physical neighbors” who do not know Christ.
As we came together today, we came to celebrate one thing, actually one person, and that is Jesus Christ. And while we did not share the same culture, the same language, nor the same boundaries regarding pet geese in the worship service, we did share the only thing that matters, and that is our love for and hope in Jesus Christ.
We were reminded that Jesus is coming back for us and that He is currently preparing a place for us so that we can be with Him for eternity. Matthew 24:14 tells us that Jesus will return when the gospel has gone out to all the nations. What a joy it is to realize that we get to participate in this very mission with our brothers and sisters in Cambodia. Lastly, we discussed the truth that Jesus is the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Well what does that mean, you may ask? It simply means that Jesus is everything and that He is the only hope for this world. We do not just travel all the way across the world to attend a family reunion. We do this because we believe that without Jesus, all peoples are lost without any hope for eternity. We come because Cambodia is a country where no less than 95% of the people are of Buddhist tradition. We come because our brothers and sisters in Christ here need to be encouraged and equipped as we partner in bringing the gospel to “all the nations.” We come because Jesus has called us to shout and sing,
Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives.
Please continue to pray for us as we celebrate and share the truth that Jesus is our only Hope.
Pastor Greg Bullard
Greg is a pastor from North End Community Church in Tacoma, WA – one of our church partners supporting Cambodian Hope Organization. This is Greg’s second year joining the Cambodia Team.