Jesus told his disciples to “go and make disciples of all nations.” (Matthew 28:19) And by way of application, all Christians are called to “make disciples” in one way or another. But this does not mean all Christians are called to “go” in the sense of going to a foreign land. Some are called to “cross-cultural” missions, while others are called to stay home and be witnesses in their community.
The church at Antioch was made up of lots of people, yet the Holy Spirit only set apart Paul and Barnabas for a special missionary journey. (Acts 13) Likewise, the Lord told Paul he would send him “far away to the Gentiles.” (Acts 22:21) Paul was called to leave home. But the Gerasene Demoniac was called to GO HOME.
The gospel of Mark records that Jesus cast a “legion” of demons out of a man, who then wanted to follow Jesus. While he became a spiritual “follower” of Christ, he was not allowed to go with Jesus. Rather, Jesus told him, “Go home to your people and report to them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how He had mercy on you.” (Mark 5:19) While the new disciple might have been initially disappointed that he couldn't accompany Jesus, he was obedient and became a faithful witness in his home region of Decapolis. The text continues, “And he went away and began to proclaim in Decapolis what great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed.” (Mark 5:20) So Paul was called to leave home; and the Gerasene Demoniac was called to go home. What are you called to do?
While all Christians are called to make disciples, this can mean very different things based on the individual. You might be called to go or you might be called to go home. Those who are called to “go home” should be supportive of those who are called to go, and vice versa. God assigns tasks within the church according to His good pleasure, not our personal whims. Sometimes well meaning missionaries try to guilt Christians into doing something God never called them to do, but this practice should be avoided. God, not guilt, should guide our steps. Are you called to go? Then go! Are you called to go home? Then go home! But wherever you go, make it your goal to glorify God by being a disciple and by making disciples. Seek the Lord with a discerning heart and He will tell you where you should go and what you should do. To go or go home? Only God can answer that.