It was such a joy to read Gospel Hoarders. I was blessed to get to know some of the Via boys when I went to North Greenville University. Eventually I would get to know the entire clan. When I met their dad, Rick, I understood partly why I loved these guys so much. Rick Via exemplifies ministry passion and personal integrity.
Rick and his fourth son, Jacob, wrote this volume to serve as a training guide for churches needing some direction for next steps concerning short-term mission trips. They do a great job of giving the motivation but then getting very practical concerning logistics.
The book’s title is such a succinct and yet painful description of the American church.
I am thankful for brothers who are willing to say the hard things and willing to go to the hard places.
- Americans have more resources, more churches, more Bibles, more Christian training, and more access to the gospel than any other place in the world. Have we become gospel hoarders (xiii)?
- A short-term mission can energize your church and can increase interest in giving more toward missions in general (2).
- Yes, missions does begin at home, but it cannot stay there or end there (8).
- We are doing a great disservice to people and being disobedient to God if we care for the physical needs of someone but do not share with him or her the saving love of God (23).
- It is difficult for a volunteer to share something with others that is not real in his or her own life (27).
- The joy of the Lord will always transcend cultural barriers (40).
- You do not want to try to start something that will hinder the missionary’s current focus (50).
- God’s glorious light dispels the darkness but also stirs up the Prince of Darkness as we invade his territory (69).
- Projects that would have taken the lone missionary weeks or months to complete can now be accomplished much more quickly with the aid of volunteer mission teams (74).
Scripture teaches that to whom much is given much is required (Luke 12:48). Americans have more resources, more churches, more Bibles, more Christian training, and more access to the Gospel than any other place in the world. Have we become Gospel hoarders? Whether you are a seasoned mission traveler or are just beginning to prepare for your first mission experience, we pray that the thoughts and insights in this book will be helpful as you prepare for your involvement in global missions. It could bring an end to Gospel hoarding in your church and the beginning of an exciting journey in changing the world! Our desire and purpose is this: to see every local church directly involved in sending and going.