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God of All gods

God of All gods

She looked up at me with bright, innocent eyes. “That is our god,” she told me as we both looked at the picture of the man in an orange jumpsuit. We were at the home of non-Christian friends for a birthday party. This sweet little girl was a classmate of my seven year old daughter….

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The Character of a Missionary: Childlikeness

The Character of a Missionary: Childlikeness

What does it take to be a missionary? Books have been written, sermons have been preached, and evaluation tools have been created. All are oriented towards assessing a new missionary’s capacity to meet a minimum level of proficiency to do the work of one who is sent by God. Missing from those prerequisites is a…

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Why Missions?

Why Missions?

The fires in California last fall were the worst in it’s history. CNN reported approximately 8,000 firefighters deployed, 6,000 homes destroyed and 113,000 acres burned. Forty-four souls perished. Can you imagine if the authorities deployed 80% of the firefighters to an area with 20% of the fires, and the other 20% to an area with…

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Missionaries Don’t Need Your Money

Missionaries Don’t Need Your Money

There is a fascinating phrase in 1 Corinthians 9:9 where Paul asks the question: “Is it for oxen that God is concerned?” He is talking about giving and uses oxen an illustration in which they can rightfully be fed by the very wheat they are thrashing. But he makes the surprising application that giving is…

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One Seed at a Time

One Seed at a Time

A few weeks ago, Kathy and I were grabbing a cup of coffee at the local supermarket. A retired couple were seated at a table near us. They nodded hello and we recognized the faces but did not know their names. When they rose to leave a half hour later, we struck up a conversation…

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Self-Evaluation

Self-Evaluation

Self-evaluation is critical in the Christian life, and it is also good to periodically stop and take a snap-shot of how things are going in our church. One of the areas that deserves evaluation is how your church is doing in international ministries or mission outreach.   The key to self-evaluation is to address the…

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An Insurmountable Challenge

An Insurmountable Challenge

A large city, with no professing believers, and a community who doesn’t trust outsiders sounds like an insurmountable challenge. For our missionary team, this is the reality they live in every day. When the need for God’s gospel is immense and the people are segregated, how can a missionary engage the culture? By using their…

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No Time for One?

No Time for One?

Editor’s Note: Originally published March 2014. When it comes to leadership, most of us think in terms of moving a group of people or an organization forward toward an end goal. Leaders have vision, and they like to think big. That is a good thing, but leaders also need to be able to think small….

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An Unexpected Answer

An Unexpected Answer

“Kwun Yum, the goddess of mercy!” That is not usually the answer you expect when you ask a five-year-old, “Who lives in heaven?” But that is the answer I got in front of all the children and parents who attended our outreach. I had booked a park with a basketball court nearby the church, and…

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The Goal of Your Next Mission Trip

The Goal of Your Next Mission Trip

There are a variety of reasons why people go on short term missions trips. Some of them might be: 1. A work project (painting, building, digging) 2. A ministry opportunity (preaching, teaching, evangelism) 3. An exposure to the needs and opportunities 4. Internships and apprenticeships 5. Personal discipleship… using the experience to provide spiritual growth…

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