Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Andrea's Vision & Heart

Vision For Missions

“Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!” John 4:35b

Missions is supremely the preeminence of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, in all things. It can be distilled into these two categories, evangelism and discipleship; to which both include Christ’s exampled compassion for humanity shown in very practical ways. Missions is empowered by His equipping spiritual blessings, to make His Name known to the nations. Missions is a harvesting of His crops for the day that Jesus returns to judge mankind and life, as we know it is finished. The Gospel is the well of life for the missionary and lost sinners to be found. Missions is the ministering of the Gospel in word and deed.

Man, in his sin, exchanged the glory of God for a lie, offending our Holy God. Now, Adam’s entire race is corrupted by nature. God is right to punish sin with death (separation from God forever). But, while we were children of wrath, “God, Who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, made us alive together with Christ. The Incorruptible Seed, Jesus the Son of God, came and gave his life as a ransom for many. We cannot know peace with God apart from faith in the Person and work of Jesus. He alone is the Way, the Truth and the Life. No man comes to the Father but by Him. Faith is a gift of grace and it comes by hearing the Word of God. Thus before Jesus was taken to the right hand of the Father He commissioned His children to share the Gospel. This is the Good News by which we are saved. This is the fuel for every saint to serve and not to be served. This is the good news that we must search for lost souls with. This is the good news by which the church is strengthened and made a glorious Bride to be presented to Christ as not having spot or wrinkle.

The Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20 is Jesus’ Mission for every Christian.

“And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen”

I am commanded, as His child, to love Him by obeying His commands, which makes the Great Commission just as much my responsibility as it was the disciples that surrounded Him at his ascent. I hear Jesus saying to me, like He said to Peter, “Do you love me?” “Feed My sheep.”

The more I grow in relationship with God, the more I see and desire His supremacy in the church, the nations and myself. I see God’s love and wisdom from Genesis to Revelation, the Fullness of Grace and Truth, Jesus our Rescuer. He is lifting up His Kingdom and His Kingdom is everlasting. It is altogether good and just. I see His love for sinners, for the weak, for the poor and the orphaned. I rejoice with Paul, “Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!”

He is altogether worthy of my devotion. I can’t fully comprehend how He brings His advancing Kingdom on earth as it is in heaven by the means of His children but I am so thankful He does.

“For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to Whom be glory forever. Amen.” Romans 11:36

Heart For Haiti

“For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light”. Col 1:9-12

After, visiting Haiti last summer on a short-term mission trip with C.W.O., we came away with a deep respect for the country’s tenacious people. We were challenged and encouraged by the local church staff we met. They are laboring in love for God and their people, even in unlikely circumstances. The local church is where the burden has rested heavy on our hearts. Along with having so much to learn from these faithful, faithful men and women there is a compelling desire to fortify them in a timely way according to the gifts God has given - so that His work prevails within them individually, as a community of Christians and throughout Haiti. We are a global body of believers growing into the Head, Jesus, each receiving and supplying the gifts of the Spirit to one another.

Crossing cultures will take time; requiring teachable hearts, love, and wisdom. We’re eager to build relationships and minister according to Romans 12:9-18.

Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep. Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.

Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.

For me personally as a potential missionary in Haiti, I see Romans 12 applied more specifically in these ways: Maintaining my personal relationship with Jesus through prayer & Bible reading, growing in and modeling a Christ-like home (loving my husband, caring for my home and training my children), supporting the ongoing work of C.W.O., using our home to minister to the needs of others, encouraging women to love God & others through prayer, Bible study and friendship, children’s ministry, creatively & effectively responding to natural crisis as it may arise (i.e. hurricanes, recent earth quake, etc.) and maybe even hosting short term mission groups to further love & care for Haiti’s people. Along with each of these I want to grow in the knowledge of James 1:27 in both a personal and corporate way, 
”…to look after orphans and widows in their distress...”

I am confident that our small one-week observations of Haiti will grow, as we better know the church, the people, the culture and the needs. We are excited about the opportunity to love God and love others in Haiti alongside of C.W.O. for the glory of His Name!

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