Written By Matt Arnett
It’s a question I get asked more than you would imagine. When I tell others that this questions gets asked to Brecka or I all the time, it’s hard for most people to believe.
Why don’t you go to 24th street in south Omaha and help out? Why not the east side of Detroit? Why are you sending our gifts and money overseas? We have people right here in America that need help, so why go to Uganda?
The simplest answer is because it’s what Jesus told us to do. But there is more to it. It’s a pretty generic answer actually, so let me try and explain.
In Acts 1:8, Jesus calls us to that “…when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, you will receive power and will tell people about me everywhere – in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
When Jesus was talking to the disciples, he was in Jerusalem and that was their home, today that would be Omaha for Brecka and I, six years ago it would be been Detroit. It’s where we make our home. Taking the gospel to our home is very important and we fully support ministries and churches that do that. However, Jesus didn’t tell us to stop there.
He said “throughout Judea”, which could represent a broader area than a city. What he said next though is what I think people who ask these types of questions often miss. “…in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Samaria is a place Jews didn’t want to go. It was where their enemies lived. Americans would probably call that Afghanistan or Iran.
It is very important that The Good News is proclaimed and taught. If you can support somebody who is going there, please do. We have friends who have gone there, even in the remotest parts of the earth, and we’re thankful they’re listening to Jesus.
In Mark 9; Peter, James, and John had an encounter where Jesus talked to Moses and Elijah. The three disciples were so excited that they wanted to build shrines for Jesus, Moses, and Elijah. They wanted to sit down and have many conversations and learn as much as they could from Moses and Elijah. Soon however a voice reigned down from Heaven “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.”
As wise as Moses and Elijah were, God still had one important message for the disciples; listen to Jesus. Brecka and I have tried to follow that same advice. So when Jesus said go to the ends of the earth and pointed to Uganda as our end of the earth, we listened.
So yes, there are needy people in Omaha and Detroit and many places in between and we want to honor the work to help all who are in need here at home. But for Brecka and I, Jesus said “Go to Uganda and share the good news.”
So why Uganda? Because Jesus said “Go!”