June 11th, 2012 by Mike Enright
Today we start SELF DENIAL. This is an annual event in the life of our church, and indeed of the Baptist family of churches in New Zealand – and has been for decades. The official name of this global mission focus has always been PRAYER and SELF DENIAL, emphasising that as well being about raising money for world mission, it’s also about making time to focus our praying on the task of world mission, and those who are serving God overseas. SELF DENIAL is promoted by TRANZSEND, the global mission arm of the Baptist Churches of New Zealand, and the focus is particularly on Tranzsend’s work in Asia and the Pacific.
Of course, there is a sense in which “Self Denial” shouldn’t be just a focus for a few weeks a year – it’s meant to be our way of life as followers of Jesus. He said, “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.” So, as we think about ways to “deny ourselves” in the next few weeks in order to be able to give generously to Tranzsend and thus participate in the work of world mission … let’s also think seriously about whether we are genuinely living as followers of Jesus – as those who for the cause of His mission in this world are committed to choosing each day to deny ourselves and take up the cross as we follow Him.
Otherwise, SELF DENIAL will be a bit hollow.