In John 4:35, Jesus uses a farming illustration to make a spiritual application. He instructs His followers to lift up their eyes to the fields around them, and He says those fields are ready for a harvest. Here Jesus is not talking about a harvest of grain, but instead He is talking about a harvest of souls for the kingdom.
This verse has application for us today because when we see the spiritual needs of people all around us as Jesus does, we are moved to action. “Eyes to See” is the theme for this year’s North Carolina Missions Offering (NCMO), an annual offering that supports a variety of ministries across our state, nation and world. This year’s NCMO goal is $2.1 million, and as we look ahead to this special offering in September, my prayer is that together we can reap a harvest because of this offering.
Support for NCMO goes to N.C. Baptist Men (NCBM), also known as Baptists on Mission, church planting, mission camps, associational projects and missions mobilization projects. Year after year, God has used your prayers and financial support for this offering and the ministries it supports to impact the lives of many people in North Carolina and around the world.
Within NCBM alone, NCMO supports 17 different ministries, including the very visible ministry of disaster relief. Although it has been nearly one year since Hurricane Matthew impacted North Carolina, N.C. Baptist volunteers continue to engage ongoing relief needs and recovery efforts, and many individuals have come to know Christ as a result of this ministry.
Through the NCMO, we have been able to work with about 100 new church plants each year within our state. These churches are reaching new people with the gospel, including many from a variety of ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Through the work of our church planting team in cooperation with churches, Baptist associations and church planting networks, we now have churches in North Carolina worshiping in more than 69 different languages.
NCMO also helps involve more church families in missions through a variety of local, national and international partnerships. One such partnership is with the Door of Hope in Johannesburg, South Africa, a ministry that rescues abandoned children.
Since 1999, support for this ministry has helped rescue more than 1,500 babies and helped many of them find a forever family through adoption.
N.C. Baptists are now helping construct the Door of Hope Village for children who aren’t adopted. Several missions teams, including several from North Carolina, have worked to construct this village from the ground up.
This is only a short list of the many ministries supported by the North Carolina Missions Offering. You can learn more about the offering and the ministries it supports at ncmissionsoffering.org.
I thank you for your support of the NCMO. I pray that we will each have “eyes to see” the opportunities that we have been given to make a difference for our Lord.
“Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!” – John 4:35b (NKJV).