I’m Happy – It Is Father’s Day!

Mom and Dads 50th

My sisters and I with mom and dad at their 50th Wedding Anniversary

I was blessed to have been brought up by a dad who did not hold mistakes over my head. Though I was always afraid to bring my mistakes to my dad; he never once treated me with contempt – he was always interested in restoring my faith in him and in myself.

My dad knew a great secret; Love Can Do What Fear Cannot.

Because of my relationship with my dad, it has been easy for me to trust God with my mistakes. Like any child, I don’t enjoy bringing my mistakes before the Father — but I have full trust in His complete, boundless, enduring, absolute love for me! I know without one shadow of doubt that I cannot do one thing to make Him love me any less; nor can I do one thing to make Him love me more. His love is perfect – PERFECT!

How wonderful it would be if we could help the world to believe and understand what it is to be loved with a perfect love. I don’t have to cower in fear when I make a mistake; I don’t have to get myself altogether before coming to Him; I don’t have to learn the lesson the first time, or even the second time; I don’t have to be perfect because His perfection covers my many, many faults! I will bless God today because I know that His love will perfect everything concerning me.

I will walk by a powerful and unwavering faith in a perfect God. His love is powerful enough to send my fears running! He is with me; He loves me always! I will not be afraid to bring my sin; mistakes; iniquity; omissions; and, commissions before Him.  I will latch on to His love! It is not about a perfect me – but a perfect God. He will forgive me! His love will perfect me!  He’s an amazing Father!

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. (1 John 4:18)

More Than Enough

More Than EnoughPrayer. Participation. Provision.  Ministry requires all of these.  What if every missionary’s testimony was that they had too many people on their prayer team; that they had too many churches that were grooming people to join in the work full time on the mission field; that the money that they are receiving to do the work is coming in too fast?!  Lloyd and I were appointed with WorldVenture in 2002 – so I’ve only been a full time missionary for 15 years.  In all of that time I’ve never, ever heard even one of these phrases.

Here’s what I do know: the missionaries that I know are some of the most gifted, anointed, talented, innovative people that I have ever known.  They are creatively sharing the truth of the Gospel with a dying world and suffering much loss in the process, however, they count the loss as nothing to even mention.  They don’t go to the field because of some warm fuzzy feeling that overtakes them – they go because the call of God compels them to go!  They are not beggars who come to your church or small group because there is no where else to go — they are sent ones who come to your church or small group because they know that just as they have answered the call to go; the Body of Christ must answer the call to participate by praying, participating and giving provisions.

In Exodus – when the people realized that God had placed among them gifted artisans/skilled people to do the work; they willingly brought their gifts so that the work could be completed – so much so that Moses had to tell them to stop bringing gifts.  It would be a beautiful thing if this would happen in the Body of Christ today.  The work is not done!  Not for those who are sent out – and not for those responsible for sending them.

What would it take for the Body of Christ to support missions in this way?  

I don’t know.  But my prayer is that it will be so.  

The people are bringing much more than enough for the construction work which the Lord commanded us to perform.”  So Moses issued a command, and aproclamation was circulated throughout the camp, saying, “Let no man or woman any longer perform work for the contributions of the sanctuary.” Thus the people were restrained from bringing any more.  For the material they had was sufficient and more than enough for all the work, to perform it.  Exodus 36: 5 – 7

Interested in giving?  We have over 200 people serving in 12 countries across the continent of Africa.  Click on any of these country names to see how you might become a part of our More Than Enough!

WHERE WE ARE SERVING IN AFRICA

 

He Will Restore …

psalm 71 20It is not an easy thing to go through trials. In fact – some of the things that we have to face on this earth can cause even the most faithful person to lose heart. As an heir with Christ, however, we are assured that though our troubles may be many and various – we ARE victorious.

The enemy would love for us to fall for the mind game he plays with us – that God has forgotten us; that God is not aware of our struggles; that God is manipulating us and enjoying watching us suffer. But we know that this is not the way of our God and King! It is His will that His children — those who have received the gift of salvation; those who have placed their faith in our Savior, Jesus Christ — live abundant lives. Not lives free of trouble — but lives in which the trouble brings about change, victory and His perfect will.

This thing that you are facing — the Lord might have put you in the middle of it! He won’t give you more than you can bear even though it might seem like you can’t take anymore. He has not forgotten you. He knows you and loves you. He will restore your life and deliver you from the situation –  if you will only trust, believe, and obey.

Psalm 71:20 “You who have shown me many troubles and distresses will revive me again, and will bring me up again from the depths of the earth.”

Tainted Water – The Solution Is Discipleship

Tainted WaterOnce while driving in Ghana – we passed by a water well that had been drilled for a local community and saw some children fetching water. They were pulling together on their rope to get their bucket out – and then came shock – horror! They were fetching the water in a turpentine can! Because we lived here among this particular people group, we KNOW that no one washed the container out with soap and water or bleach or boiling water – they just rinsed it in the local pond until they couldn’t smell the turpentine and then declared it fit for use. We love these people and our hearts went out to them.  We immediately planned a healthy drinking water training for them.  A training that would help them to understand what things would contaminate the water and what was necessary for them to avoid introducing contaminates into their drinking water. They needed to know that if contaminates were introduced – this water would bring death and not life.

Not only is clean water important — but understanding what can contaminate water is important.   

There is a tendency in the Western world to believe that once we have shared the truth of the gospel with people and they have confessed that they believe – we have done our part. But I am a witness that what you leave behind is a person that believes the truth, but has no idea what the truth is, or what to do with that truth. They twist it to fit their circumstance, they ignore the parts that they cannot easily understand, some rise to a position of leadership and then exploit the little that they know to their own benefit – – some minister an adulterated gospel and taint the water for an entire congregation. What is the solution to this issue?

The solution is to teach the complete gospel.

That means that we go beyond salvation. We have to teach people to study the word of God so that they can come to know the person of God. But what if they can’t read?  We’ve encountered this many times where we work.  Then the solution is discipleship.  We have to be willing to give the time and resources necessary to teach them to read or to provide an audio bible. After teaching them to read the word or to listen to the word, we must teach them to interact in the word in such a way that it becomes something that they can apply to their life! When we equip them with these tools – they will know what the truth looks like and are less likely to fall prey to any contaminated word. When we equip them with these tools then we are preparing them to protect the word that is taking root in their hearts. When we equip them with these tools – we ensure that the word will bring them to the abundant life that God has planned for them.

But this takes TIME!! And, be honest, how many of us are willing to give our precious time to another?? I can tell you as one who lives a life of discipleship, that it is a 24 hour a day commitment. The women that I disciple call whenever they need to, they visit whenever they need to, they invite me to delve into places in their lives that I don’t want to go! And I am also a witness – that you might have an 8 week program – but I have yet to disciple any believer in only 8 weeks!

Discipleship is life on life – LIFE on LIFE!! It means loving someone as much as you love yourself. Would you drink tainted water willingly?! I think not!!

Interestingly – our Savior’s last words to us were that we should go, preach, teach and make disciples. He really did not say go, preach, teach, and get them saved! We’ve got to be willing to give our whole lives to the purposes and passions of our Savior and King – He wants them to know Him, He wants them to know the Father, He wants them to be filled with the Holy Spirit. In the words of my husband, “time has come to stop dunkin’ ‘em and droppin’ ‘em” – we’ve got to start counting them as so dear to us that we not only give them the gospel but our very lives.  In fact – we ought to be modeling the life of Christ in view of people even before they know who He is!!  What a change in the world we could make!

so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well. 1 Thessalonians 2:8

The Same … United … One Purpose

unity-in-ChristDivision in the world is front page news nowadays almost every day.  It is sad to see, but the news focuses on the world. not the Body of Christ, so it is not surprising.  The heartbreaking thing is to see the division within those who call themselves followers of Christ.  One of the things that gave me the most delight when we were living in Ghana was the privilege of bringing women together across denominations and people groups to be in fellowship; to study the Word of God; to practice the life of Christ; and to do ministry together.

Now that my role has been based in the USA – I’ve gotten approached by a couple of ladies who would like me to walk with them.  One asked me what joy I get from discipling someone.   I told her that one of my greatest joys is to see those who I walk with unified in love.

As I venture to disciple Christ followers it is my duty to see that the young ladies that I’m walking with know what it means to be unified and why.

  • First, I must teach that Christ has encouraged and admonished us to be one.
  • Second, they must know that my love for them is a gift from God – not anything earned by one of them more than another.  I love them all equally – showing no respect of persons.
  • Third, I must walk in the Spirit – exhibiting the fruit of the Spirit – modeling before them a life that displays an understanding of  God’s presence and a filling of the Holy Spirit.
  • Lastly, I must teach a message of grace, because that is what God’s affection towards us looks like.

As I do these things – I have seen time and time again that they are able to embrace their common purpose to glorify God and are better equipped to walk in UNITY.

My prayer is that the Father will show me how to walk according to His word ALWAYS! That my life will be an accurate model to those who are watching me; showing them the way to godly love compassion and unity.  That the world will see His grace through my life and unity through my own family.  May my life, my words, my actions lead others to become one in Him!

Therefore if there is any encouragement in Christ, if there is any consolation of love, if there is any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and compassion, make my joy complete by being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose

Philippians 2:1-2