January 2023 Mind of the Missionary

“For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my Name shall be great among the Gentiles…for my Name shall be great among the heathen, saith the Lord of Hosts.” Malachi 1:11


As I sit in my office looking at the wintry day outside, I see the Nativity on the lawn of PBA, and I’m seeking inspiration from the Lord on what to write for the New Year newsletter. It’s sort of hard to think about 2023 when I haven’t even celebrated the Lord’s birth yet! Oh, how it must have been for the prophets to proclaim God’s Word when they themselves would not see its fulfillment during their time of ministry.

In these verses from Malachi, he prophesied some 400 to 500 hundred years before Christ came to earth. For many others, it was over a thousand years for their words to be fulfilled. Here, I am concerned about this newsletter. These men trusted what God inspired them to write despite not knowing when those words would be fulfilled…the greatness of God’s Name among all nations.

Malachi wrote as the people of Judah were returning from their Babylonian captivity. I don’t know if he was thinking about God’s greatness among all the nations as much as he was hoping that His greatness would be restored among his own people. Personally, I would be!

That brings us to 2023.  From one end of our world to the other, it appears as though the Gospel is NOT advancing among the nations, countries, peoples, and tribes as we would like. I pray daily for God’s message to reach the unevangelized, the unreached, and the unengaged, and it looks like a losing battle. I’m like Malachi, how can God make His name great in the world? Then I quickly remember what God did through Pentecost and the early church. He can do it if we will allow Him to work through us. Why? Because we are filled with the same Holy Spirit that transformed the world in a few years. Will we allow Him to do so?

May 2023 be the year in which we tell the Lord, “I’ll let everything else go in order that your Name will be great among the nations”! (By the way, it’s still gloomy outside.)


Happy New Year!

Bro. Lyle