I think that we’re aware that missions has a price tag, but we usually think of the price in terms of the dollar amount we’ll give to the offering appeal. Denominations will make a large allocation toward missions work, and churches follow suit by devoting a sizeable percentage of their operating budgets toward the same. The point I’m trying to make is that we can affix a hard number to the price of missions, right down to the penny.
In Acts 13:1-3, God revealed an opportunity to a new church as they gathered in worship. The pricetag was high. God asked for 40% of their leadership team to be released from their teaching and leading responsibilities to carry the gospel even farther past the margins. Not only did God ask for 40% of their leadership team, he asked for their top two performers, Paul and Barnabas. Not to take anything away from the other three, but Paul and Barnabas are the names we’ve known since elementary Sunday School.
When God asks his people to make a commitment to reach the world, he’s going to ask for our best. He’s going to ask us to make a sacrifice that will be costly. God doesn’t broker in small change. He’s committed to reaching the world, and he’s committed to sending his people into the world. He’s not afraid to “ask for the check.” Come to think of it, God himself modelled this when he sent Jesus to the world.