In the early 19th century, US President Thomas Jefferson completed the Louisiana Purchase, stretching the borders of the fledgling republic “from sea to shining sea.”

The problem, however, was that no one really knew what was in that vast expanse of land. Maps would be needed, with clear instructions for the pioneers who would travel to the Pacific. Explorers Lewis and Clark became, in effect, the pioneers of the pioneers—preparing the way for the most massive land migration in US history. They cut a new trail that others would follow.

The apostle Paul’s commitment to ministry was framed by a similar priority. In Romans 15:20, he wrote, “I have made it my aim to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build on another man’s foundation.” He wanted his efforts in ministry to cut a new trail—and others followed. Timothy, Titus, Mark, and Silas are just a few who followed the trail that Paul blazed.

Today that commitment is seen in Jesus’ followers who take the message of the Savior to the uttermost parts of the world. As we pray today, let’s ask for God’s blessing on His Word as we, His “ambassadors,” cut a new trail in our generation (2 Cor. 5:20).