The late, great missiologist Ralph Winter was once asked how he would assign 1000 new cross-cultural kingdom workers. His answer will surprise you because I am sure most of us would agree that sending them to the least reached, the unengaged would be the most important. Ralph Winter would make them all mobilizers!
Sometimes we can get blinded to the best choice because of the urgency of the need. With more than 2 billion people on the earth who have limited or no access to the gospel, we surely would have responded differently. Winter’s response was based on a bigger vision. How do we finish the job?
What is a Mobilizer?
Mobilizers of cross-cultural workers are an essential key to expanding the workforce. In the apostle Paul’s famous missionary statement in Romans 10:13-15, we could easily add the line, “…and how can they be sent unless they are found?”
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then can they call on the One in whom they have not believed? And how can they believe in the One of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone to preach? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”
What is strategic about sending mobilizers is that they multiply themselves. If I were to go to the unreached, I would be as significant as one worker can be in those contexts. If I were a mobilizer, I might mobilizer 100 people to go to the unreached and the impact could be 100-fold. So, if one individual could have the effect of one person or 100 people, which is more strategic and practical?
Here’s the rub. It’s not very glamorous to mobilize people, and raising financial support to be a mobilizer instead of someone who goes to another place is a challenging road. I understand the thinking. We need more “goers” so let’s put our money on them. However, if one mobilizer can multiply themselves into 100, is that at least as much bang for the buck?
In all of this, whether in going or sending or mobilizing, the priority is obedience to the Lord of the harvest. Your resources should go to where He asks you to direct them. Our trust is in him.