By Ryan Shaw
Ryan serves as the international lead facilitator of Student Volunteer Movement 2 (SVM2).
Where are all the men? This is a common question that arises when leaders discuss the younger generation and their involvement in global mission. Women who are being sent out as global message bearers are much more prevalent than the numbers surrounding men.
Some would say, “Praise the Lord” regarding this fact and leave it at this, but I know that there are significant implications for ministry around the world when men do not step up to the plate to answer the call of God to the nations.
Single women working alone or with other single women in many places around the world can be subject to various forms of harassment/ mistreatment. At the very least they can be viewed as loose sexually. Islamic culture, in particular, places a very strong value upon the preservation of family and community.
This is achieved by its members adhering to prescribed regulations for male/female interaction. Within this framework there is no place for a single woman living outside the protection of her father or close relatives.
A Muslim will have serious doubts about the morality of an unaccompanied single female message bearer and may view her as a threat to the stability of the Islamic community.
This loss of reputation will make it difficult for some Muslims to consider associating with the message bearer, let alone listening to the message they have come to share.
In order to preserve the reputation of the individual message bearer and to prevent the gospel of Jesus Christ from falling into ill-repute, we need to send teams which can be perceived by the Islamic Uma (community) as upright and moral. This includes married couples who have single women on their teams and men who will rise to the occasion and “GO”.
It is time for more young men to consider God’s call upon our lives related to going into all nations with the gospel.
We’ve made countless excuses for why God isn’t calling me, when in fact He has already called us, we just haven’t been willing or open to hear and respond. Involvement in Global Proclamation really isn’t a choice for the committed follower of Jesus, the only question is what form my involvement will take.