Friday, November 07, 2008

The Birth and Growth of an Idea

This morning I sat on a couch in our office complex, looking across at a couple who have been called to, and trained for, missions. Together, we two couples form a team. We are a team of international missions consultants. Our job is both simple and complex. Simply stated, we find those called and help them get to their place of service, as I wrote a few weeks back. The complexities come in when you consider interviewing candidates, training, networking, and the entire proverbial ball of wax that is a part of sending out missionaries.

This couple--Peruvians by birth, up-bringing, and culture--was excited as we shared our vision for sending out Latin-Americans into all the world. For me, the most gratifying thing was hearing the wife ask (names omitted intentionally), "Who is on our team?" Did you see that small possessive pronoun in that? "Our." It's "our" team. She did not ask, "Who is on "your" team; she asked about "our team."

That is a great hurdle that we have crossed. We bridged a river. Find the cliche that works for you and run with it. We see one another as equals, partners in ministry. We bring to the table what each can bring, showing (trying to, at least) mutual respect and learning what we can from one another.

One important ramification is that when any of us shares an idea, it is not filtered quite as much as can normally happen in cross-cultural communication. So when I brought up some ideas as to how we may accomplish sending out missionaries, I saw their faces light up. When they shared their opinions regarding some of the details, they got to see my excitement.

It was an incubation room. An idea was born and began to grow. It is not a North American idea; it is not a South American idea. It is a mission team idea. I am excited about this for two reasons: one, the goal to send out missionaries from this country is a realistic one in the eye of those with whom we work; two, when the "product" is finally presented to the national church or churches, it won't be seen as imported from another world.

May the idea of sending out laborers continue to grow and bring fruit!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Mr. Obama Is President-elect; Now What?

America cast its vote. Congress did not change all that much; it did move to the left. But the presidency took historic steps. So now what do we do? We pray. We do the same thing we would do, no matter the winner. We pray for our leaders. We depend upon the hand of the living God to mercifully move this country to a third great awakening.

Above all, we obey what God teaches in Psalm 37:3 - "Trust in the Lord and do good."

God save America. God save the congress and the president.

Monday, November 03, 2008

An Election Day Prayer

This was placed as a comment on another post. I chose to post it here to be sure it is seen by more people.

A Prayer for the ElectionNovember 3, 2008 By: John Piper
Category: Commentary

Father in heaven, as we approach this election on Tuesday, I pray

1) that your people will vote,

2) and that they will vote with a sense of thankfulness for a democratic system that at least partially holds in check the folly and evil in all our hearts so that power which corrupts so readily is not given to one group or person too easily;

3) that we would know and live the meaning of being in the world, but not of it, doing politics as though not doing them, being on the earth, yet having our lives hidden with Christ in God, rendering to Caesar the things that are Caesars, and to God the things that are God’s;

4) that we would discern what truths and values should advance by being made law and which should advance only by the leavening of honest influence;

5) that your people would see what love and justice and far-seeing wisdom demand in regard to the issues of education, business and industry, health care, marriage and family, abortion, welfare, energy, government and taxes, military, terrorism, international relations, and every challenge that we will face in the years to come;

6) and above all, that we will treasure Jesus Christ, and tell everyone of his sovereignty and supremacy over all nations, and that long after America is a footnote to the future world, he will reign with his people from every tribe and tongue and nation. Keep us faithful to Christ’s all important Word, and may we turn to it every day for light in these dark times.

In Jesus’ name, Amen