Monday, April 5, 2010

Why am I skipping the biggest Christian Conference of the year?

This week Empowered 21 is taking place on the campus of Oral Roberts University only a couple of miles from where I live. The speakers are a who’s who of today’s biggest churches and ministries. Thousands of believers from across the globe are coming to Tulsa to talk about the future of Charismatic Christianity. So, why won’t I be there?

I actually bought a ticket to the conference months ago. I was fully planning to go. But then, the original date for our Ethiopian crusade had to be changed. Because of the political situation in Ethiopia, this was the only week it would work for our crusade to take place.

I had a choice to make. I asked myself, “Should I stay in Tulsa so I can hob-nob with key ministry leaders, or should I travel to the middle of nowhere to preach to poor tribal people?” I decided to go to Africa.

Crusades are for sinners. Conferences are for believers. Far too often Christians are so busy talking to each other that they forget to talk to those who most need to hear. I decided my time was better spent throwing a net into the sea instead of hanging out in on the dock with other fishermen trading yarns. As Reinhard Bonnke says, “The church is not a pleasure ship; it is a life boat and every hand is needed on deck for soul winning.”

I like going to conferences, but my main mission is to go to those who have never heard the Gospel. As an evangelist, my primary calling is to reach the lost. I may miss a big conference, but at least I won’t miss a mighty harvest of souls.