If You Hold the Rope

A man stood at the edge of a dark, unexplored cavern. He looked down and wondered what it may cost him to descend into it and away from the life he knew. As he returned to his friends he said, “Well, I will go down, if you will hold the rope.”

A small group of English pastors in the late 18th century looked at what seemed to be an insurmountable task before them. The spiritual darkness they saw clouding India could no longer be ignored and these friends desired to bring the Gospel to the distant nation. William Carey said that he would go if his colleagues who stayed behind would commit to “holding the rope.”

Andrew Fuller was one who stayed in England. He championed for his friend and the ministry to unreached peoples as fund-raiser, promoter and pastor. He continuously battled the western world’s ill-formed doctrines and he visited churches to represent those who followed Carey’s path overseas. He even took the lead role of selecting new missionaries. 

Andrew Fuller, a pastor, theologian, husband and father.

Andrew Fuller, a pastor, theologian, husband and father.

Fuller never made the journey across oceans to preach the Gospel where it had not been taken. However, because of his efforts to never let go of that rope, he helped shape much of what modern missions looks like today.

The GO Fund wants to emulate this very idea with the, “Ropeholder Event.”

Ropeholder Events can be held anywhere. They can be scheduled at any time and with anyone who is interested to know about how they can be actively engaged in missions to unreached peoples from the United States.

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It starts with a box. Those who are interested in facilitating an event will be given one from The GO Fund office. Inside are the leader’s instructions and a DVD guide which leads a group through video discussion. Once everyone is invited, present and ready to listen, the Ropeholder Event kicks off.


At the end of the 90-minute program, event-goers are then invited to pray and create a video of themselves to encourage a missionary partner of The GO Fund. *

This is not another class. Ropeholder Event is an easy way to be around others who want to see unreached lives transformed by the Gospel. It is a convenient platform to learn and pray for God’s work through several missionaries and to bring friends and family into that discussion. While in the U.S., we may not be reaching the farthest ends of the globe, but we can and must be ready to hold the rope for those who are.

Philippians 4:14-19

Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles. Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid more than once when I was in need. Not that I desire your gifts; what I desire is that more be credited to your account. I have received full payment and have more than enough. I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 1:3-8

I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me. God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.

*All material, discussion and recording instructions are equipped for missionary partners’ safety and security.

At the End of Your Journey


The Celestial City is beautiful. Encrusted with jewels and gold-paved roads, it’s where real treasures are stored and never fade. It’s where the Lord resides and where the main character in The Pilgrim’s Progress journeys to find. He knows he won’t get there right away, but it will be his last destination and the place he can finally see Jesus, the one who took away his heavy burden.

This 340-year-old, allegorical novel follows the story of a man who is appropriately named, Christian. It opens with the author, John Bunyan, who says he fell asleep and dreamed. In his dream, he sees Christian standing with a large weight on his back and a Bible in his hand. Bunyan watches as the man becomes distraught over the reality of his sin and how he might be saved from it.

As Christian commits to his quest toward the City, he experiences a myriad of trials and meets several aptly-named characters – all of which appear as relatable metaphors for any believer’s faith.

Similarly, those who are followers of Christ are woven into an intricate story in which we daily walk a path laid out for us. Unlike Christian, the decisions we make along our individual journeys are not confined to the pages of a novel. We have been invited into a more complex, more stunning narrative, and it’s one in which we know the ending.  

I prefer to be where I shall die no more, and in company of others who shall continually cry, ‘Holy, holy, holy!’

The GO Fund’s annual Vision Dinners are themed after these beliefs. As we move toward the Celestial City, we want to celebrate the ending we know comes for those who put their faith in Christ, the one who takes our burdens. We also want to link arms with brothers and sisters whose paths have lead them to the farther reaches of the world.

Matthew 6:19-21 tells us to store up for ourselves treasures in Heaven where they can not be destroyed. Followers of Christ can rejoice that there will be a reward for the work that often shows little return here on Earth. The beautiful currency we will be given at the end of our journeys are small tokens that further reveal God’s goodness and character – the ultimate provider and Father who delights to give his children good gifts. This truth is paired with the stronger, underlying reason we so desperately desire to reach the Celestial City. It is the same as Christian’s in The Pilgrim's Progress:

“There at the Celestial City, they say there is no death and there I shall dwell with such companions I like best. For, to tell you the truth, I love Him because He released me from my burden, and I am very weary of my inward sickness. In view of this, I prefer to be where I shall die no more, and in company of others who shall continually cry, ‘Holy, holy, holy!’”