In Missions work, there are “good things” and there are “God things.” Since good is the enemy of best, and there are many good things that a cross cultural worker can be involved in, every missionary needs insight.
Insight is the ability to look into; to penetrate beyond the veneer, to see what is going on at the heart of something. If we don’t take care of the root of of an issue, we won’t affect the fruit. Missionaries must go for the root.
So, what is it that the missionary is having to “look into”? I think first and foremost, it has to be “What is God’s plan and heart for this area and these people? What is God wanting to do in this place? What is hindering that plan? What can help it? What’s my part?”
The Apostle Paul prayed that people would be given the “spirit of wisdom and revelation”…that the eyes of their understanding would be enlightened. In essence, he was praying for them to have spiritual insight. (Eph 1:16-18) The “Sons of Issachar” in the Bible are a good example of insight because they “had understanding of the times…and what knew Israel must do.” They had insight and knew what needed to be done.
Once we know what needs to be done, we must go to work in accomplishing it. We must resist the disease of “analysis paralysis.”
This can be an issue for me. I tend to overthink things, but I find that when I finally make a decision, I can stick with it. When I speak about something, my personality is such that I want to be accurate. But there comes a time when accuracy is not enough. We are called to act. How about you? How has insight played a part in your life?