Surfboards, Globes, and Total World Impact

By Pepper Horn
A few years ago I was living in Costa Rica. When my friends and I were not in language school, we would take off and explore the country. On one of our excursions we made our way to a sleepy little surfing community on the Nicoya Peninsula called Tamarindo.

The place was like a magnet attracting free spirits from all over the world. Most of the people were transplants from the U.S. and Europe. They had traveled there to visit, but never left.

One afternoon my friends and I signed up for an afternoon surfing class. Our instructor was just what you would expect. He was in his 40’s and came complete with long shaggy hair and skin that looked like leather. He gave us step-by-step instructions. He said, “When you do a push-up, quickly slide your front foot between your hands…but don’t look down at your feet.” Then he said something that got my attention. He said, “The direction you look is the direction you will go.” If you look down at your feet, you will fall off the surfboard. The instructor went on to say, ‘‘Pick out a fixed object on the beach. You will need a reference point because, “The direction you look is the direction you will go.”

Hmmm, “The direction I look is the direction I will go.” Immediately I thought of my world globe. Let me explain. Back in my single days when I was living with my Costa Rican host family, I had a blow-up globe hanging from the ceiling in my bedroom. (Since getting married the blow-up globe has been relegated to my study area…something about “not fitting in with the motif”.) Anyway, I had the globe hanging from the ceiling because I wanted the world to be the first thing I saw when I opened my eyes and the last thing I saw when I went to bed. I now have a large National Geographic wall map of the world in my study area along with the aforementioned blow-up globe and a basketball that looks like a globe. I want to be reminded over and over again that the task Jesus gave us was to impact all nations. As my friend says, “Jesus will not be satisfied with anything less than total world impact (Rev. 7:9-10). Remember, “The direction you look is the direction you will go.”

When I am investing in men, I emphasize having God’s vision to impact the whole world thorough multiplication. I want to place the world in their laps and let the Holy Spirit show them their role in fulfilling the Great Commission in this generation. I use books like Operation World, videos from the Operation World website, and prayer letters from workers serving in other parts of the world. “The direction you look is the direction you will go.”

I also ask the men to buy a world map and hang it in a place where they will see it often. I then challenge them to pray that God would let them directly or indirectly impact each people group by investing in faithful men.

As Dawson Trotman said, “We pray for peanuts, trinkets, and toys, when we should be asking God for continents.” When you invest in people remember to keep the vision of impacting the whole world before them.

Remember, “The direction you look is the direction you will go.”