We have a some mission work to do at Zion. By surveying 35,000 Americans, the Pew Research Forum observed that only 76% of them were affiliated with a Christian Church.* Assuming that these 76% are true believers and the remaining 24% are not, that means 8,400 of them are perishing without Christ’s gift of salvation. If we asked the 800,000+ souls living in El Paso County and the more than a million souls living in Juarez the same questions the Pew Forum asked, how many people would we find in our community still facing sin, satan, and a broken world alone, ignorant of Christ’s victory for them?
What are we going to do about this? I don’t know who those 8,400 souls from the Pew Forum survey are or who in our valley doesn’t yet know Christ, but I DO know a few people who are baptized and commissioned (Matt 28:19-20) so that the lost might trust in Christ and be saved: YOU …and me, the faces and names you see in this newsletter, the young and old you sit next to on Sundays, those recovering in hospitals and at home… ALL OF US. How awesome it is to be saved and to bear the name of God (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), placed upon us in Holy Baptism, so that we might live for more than just ourselves!
May we work together, empowered and led by the Lord, so that our valley will be a place where people encounter the risen savior and experience the transformation of life in Him. May God use us as instruments of Christ’s salvation and sanctification, lifting Christ high in His means of grace: His Word, Holy Baptism, and Holy Communion. In your homes and through your vocations may people find opportunity to hear the hope that is within you through Jesus Christ.
Let us be ready “in season and out of season” (1 Tim 4:2) for the mission work God has called us to in this place. This summer much outreach is being done, and new friendships are being formed at Zion. Our congregation has voted to add a couple additional programs for reaching out to our community this fall. Please pray for Zion, for our world, and the plans being carried out. Pray that God’s redemptive work would indeed extend beyond ourselves and reach those around us who, just like us, need salvation.
in Christ’s love,
*The Pew Forum report; accessed on June 25, 2013; http://religions.pewforum.org/reports
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