Quite a few readers of my recent article “10 Quotes to Rock Your World” urged me to keep the quotes coming. Here, then, are 10 more of my all-time favorites, designed to help set your hearts ablaze with love for God and love for the lost.
1. “Would that God would make hell so real to us that we cannot rest; heaven so real to us that we must have men there; Christ so real to us that our supreme motive and aim shall be to make the Man of Sorrows the Man of Joy by the conversion to Him of many” (J. Hudson Taylor). How this cuts to the heart of our self-centered, earthly minded lives, reminding us that eternity is real and that the greatest joy we can have in this world, other than knowing the Lord ourselves, is making Him known to others.
2. “People who do not know the Lord ask why in the world we waste our lives as missionaries. They forget they too are expending their lives and when the bubble has burst they will have nothing of eternal significance to show for the years they have wasted” (Nate Saint). These words become all the more powerful when we realize that the man who wrote them was martyred for his faith, dying along with Jim Elliot and three other courageous young missionaries when they risked their lives bringing the gospel to the Auca Indians in the 1950s. Read it again—and again. Then ask yourself if your life makes sense in the light of eternity.
3. “God, I pray, light these idle sticks of my life and may I burn up for Thee. Consume my life, my God, for it is Thine. I seek not a long life but a full one like Yours, Lord Jesus” (Jim Elliot). What else can be said? Long life is a gift, but you can live a long, empty, nonproductive life or you can burn bright for 28 years like Jim Elliot and reap the rewards forever.
4. “Are the things you are living for worth Christ dying for?” (Leonard Ravenhill). This was the question confronting me on the first letter I received from Bro. Len in 1989, and if you visit his gravesite today, it will confront you again. So, what are you living for?
5. “With Thee, O my God, is no disappointment. I shall never have to regret that I have loved Thee too well” (Henry Martyn). Lord, I just want to pour out my love for You until my heart is ready to burst! How can I love You too much? Martyn, who died on the mission field before he reached 30 years of age, never regretted giving his life for the lost and for the Savior he loved so much.
6. “Let us go to win for the Lamb the reward of His sacrifice” (Nicholas von Zinzendorf). This is what it’s all about! All for Jesus! All for the Lamb! Jesus paid it all; now we must let the whole world know. Let’s bring great joy to the one who gave His all for us.
7. “The love of Christ constrains us. There is no other motivation for missionary service that is going to survive the blows of even the first year. You do it for Him” (Elisabeth Elliot). She is living proof. After her husband, Jim Elliot, was martyred, she returned to reach the people that killed him. That’s how far love for Jesus will carry you.
8. “I can tell you that, when you are just outside of heaven, all that matters is that you loved and served Jesus” (Bob Pierce). If the glory of the world to come can become real to us, then our lives in this world will become all the more effective.
9. “The Spirit of Christ is the spirit of missions, and the nearer we get to Him, the more intensely missionary we must become” (Henry Martyn). This, in a nutshell, sums it up. It’s not about laying guilt trips on people to become more evangelistic; it’s about getting closer and closer to the Lord. As we do, our hearts will burn with love for God and love for the lost—and if He’s not calling you to be a missionary to a foreign country, then He’s calling you to be a missionary in your own backyard. The lost are everywhere to be found.
10. “There are no closed doors to the gospel, provided that, once you go through the door, you don’t care whether or not you come back out” (Brother Andrew). So, then, what’s our excuse? To quote Brother Andrew again, “Our Lord said go! He said nothing about coming back.”