Which Nation Is God Calling Me to Reach for His Kingdom?
God is constantly trying to get every one of us to get our eyes off ourselves and start looking for ways to meet needs for others, instead of just seeking to meet our own. And the greatest need of all is to have our sins forgiven, our heart changed, and be made into a new creation by the power of God through Jesus.
Everyone needs that – people across the world in every nation and every people group. And just about every Christian will eventually develop some sort of a ‘burden’ for people from another land – a nation, a people group, an ethnicity, or a region – if they make themselves available to God by seeking to meet the needs of others before their own.
God is looking for people who want to reach the lost from other nations.
That includes you.
But do you know which nation God is calling you to reach? We at iBAM believe that everyone is called to reach at least one people group other than the one they’re from. But not everyone knows who that is.
Do you want to know which nation or people group God wants you to help reach? Use what you learn in this guide and you will find out!
Some of these steps are more spiritual in nature, and others are more practical. The more of them you do, the sooner you will discover God’s calling on you to reach a particular nation or people group.
1. Look at a Map!
Other than the Olympics, wars, and occasional political mentions, do you ever think about other nations? Could you find most of them on a map? A great and very simple first step to discovering which nation God is calling you to reach is to just get a map and stare at it.
Study the continents. See which countries are in each one. Note the borders. Note the countries near the oceans, and the landlocked ones. Note the differences in size. If you want to take it a little farther, go online and compare the populations. Look at detailed maps of each country and note the biggest cities.
Looking at maps gets you thinking about other places and the people who live there. It puts places in your mind that you probably didn’t used to think about much. Later, God might bring one of them up and give you a burden or passion to do something for them.
2. Study Countries in More Detail
You probably can’t do this for every country on earth, but it doesn’t actually take that long to learn the basics about other places. For instance, with relatively little effort, you can learn:
- Predominant language spoken
- Most prevalent religions
- Type of political system
- Economic realities for majority of people
- Educational levels
- Recent history – what are people dealing with
The more you know, the more God can work with as he leads and grows your heart for others.
Here is a map to every nation on earth, the people, and the resources of who has and does not have the Gospel. You can get lost researching here.
3. Read International News
So many people just read the news about their own places. Start reading news sources from other nations. There are some big international news organizations in Europe, Asia, and the Arab world that do stories from all sorts of countries. Learn what’s going on and start to educate yourself a little.
God may use a news story to prompt you to lean in and find out more.
4. Start Praying for Nations – as a Daily Devotional
Next, as you learn more about more countries, begin praying for them. You could even use a ‘devotional’ approach. Month 1 is Europe. Month 2 is Africa. Month 3 is South America. Each month, pick a new continent, and each day, pick a new country in that continent.
Based on what you learned in your brief look at each country and any other prior knowledge, pray for that nation. Pray for its leaders, its people, against any principalities such as dominant religions. Your prayers can be really brief, just a couple minutes, or longer if you have more on your mind.
But as you begin to pray for nations, eventually God will probably put one or a handful of them on your mind more often, and you’ll find yourself returning to them in prayer. When that happens, that’s a strong indication that God is starting to lead you.
5. Ask God for a Specific Country or People Group
In addition to praying over nations, you can also just ask God to show you a country or a people group that he wants you to start reaching. God likes persistence, because it shows you really do want him to answer this prayer. And he wants commitment too, because he doesn’t want to call people who will flake out after a couple months.
Persistence implies a desire to commit. So, you may have to pray this prayer quite a few times. But eventually, God will answer it, and probably in ways you didn’t expect when you began.
6. Support a Missions Organization or a Missionary
There are a number of Christian mission organizations doing great work all over the world. iBAM is just one of many. Different organizations have different focuses for their missionary work. Ours focuses on using business entrepreneurship to make disciples through local believers and leaders. Read more about our process here.
Find an organization and start donating to them. Even a small amount like $25 a month is great. Why? Because they will start sending you stories, updates, and news about what’s happening in the nation or nations where their missionaries are working. Here’s an example of one of our stories, about Afghan refugees reached through iBAM.
As you read these stories, your heart will enlarge because you’ll realize how much is going on in the world to reach and save the lost. And eventually, God will give you a burden for a particular place where you can focus more of your efforts, prayers, resources, other gifts, and perhaps direct involvement.
7. Travel or Volunteer Overseas
This is not a tourism trip. As you gain more awareness and understanding of particular nations of the world, you might feel drawn to one or a handful of them. If so, save up your money and take a trip. But make a plan in advance. Determine specific places to go in that country. Find local churches. Find some organizations doing work there and volunteer for a week. Eat the local food. Try to communicate across a language barrier.
This is how you can get your feet wet, and also open your eyes to a whole group of people living their lives in ways very different from you.
If you want to do this step earlier in the process of discovering which nation God is calling you to reach, you can. There’s nothing wrong with just picking a country you know little about, and traveling there. You can still make the most out of the trip by doing all the things just discussed. Again, don’t just visit tourist areas.
You could also volunteer after a natural disaster by going to whatever nation was impacted. Or, perhaps your church or a neighboring one has an existing program in another country. If so, that’s an easy way to get your feet wet.
The one thing about traveling is to make sure you go prepared. There are certain vaccinations and various health recommendations that are pertinent to specific countries. This isn’t something to do on a whim. Read up and know what you’re getting into.
8. Just Do It
God waits for people to start moving, and then he guides and directs them. But if you’re just standing there waiting, God will most often just keep waiting for you.
So get out there and do…anything! Do something for other people – not for yourself, not to pad your resume, and not with people you’re already comfortable with. Getting concerned with just about any issue can and likely will eventually lead you to get connected with another nation.
That issue could be poverty, education, human trafficking, disaster relief, political oppression, drugs, water quality, and even business entrepreneurship – spend enough time studying any one of these issues, and you will eventually come to know more about particular nations, their needs both spiritual and natural, and what God is doing there.
The EDGE provides amazing experiences for 18-30 year olds. These are well planned and effective opportunities.
Mission Guide is another site that might work for you, your church, or your family with any number of short term impactful experiences.
God Will Reveal His Calling on You
Do any or all of these things, and eventually, you will find yourself drawn to a particular place and its people. You will increase in passion and desire to do something, to learn more, to understand, to give, and to minister.
God will open your heart if you want him to. Take these steps, give them enough time, and you will be showing God that you really do want him to call you to reach a particular nation, region, or people group. And he will most certainly reward you with one, because the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.
Want an example of a missions’ story?
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