A question that we discuss at length during every Member Orientation is “How do you define success for yourself as a missionary?” As disciples of Christ, who have been called and sent out to make disciples of others, we can only consider ourselves successful if we believe that we have accomplished what our Master told us to do. Hearing the words “Well done, good and faithful servant” is our greatest hope and ultimate definition of success. How should we live and serve today, so that we can be assured that we will hear those words when we stand before the Master and give account to Him?
My first extended time of reflection about this question happened about 5 years ago. Our International Director stood with me in a cafeteria line at a LeaderLink training in Florida, and asked me how I would define success for SEND in Far East Russia. I had no answer for him. I had never been asked that question before. But that question would not let go of me. I returned to Russia, where I was leading our work in the Far East, and began to think deeply about this question. Providentially, in my personal devotions, I was going through the book of 2 Corinthians, and I was struck by Paul’s amazing confidence in God’s approval on his ministry.