Raising Children with a Global Vision

Steve Shadrach makes the following #wowQuote in his book “The God Ask,” and I have wholeheartedly embraced… because it’s bang on!

“In some churches, you will raise support
and in others you will raise supporters.”

Since reading it, I have quoted it numerous times… Here’s the essence – for me:

 A pastor may, for any number of reasons, express to you that their church is unable to offer financial support at this time (size, stage of growth, economic climate, etc.), and it’s often just as difficult for them to say “no” as it is for you to hear. My response…

“No problem, here’s how you can help…” 

Kids_IamGlobal_2 NicI then talk about my kids who will experience much change as they become global and suggest getting a Sunday School class or seniors in the church to adopt them as a Prayer Project. We will provide their photo, birth dates and other pertinent information and they only have to do two things:

  1. Pray for them regularly by name and referencing France.
  2. Write them a note card for birthdays or a holiday, reminding them that
    • They are not forgotten
    • They are being prayed for
    • God wants to, and will, use them in France also.

A win-win

Not only does it mean the world to us to have our kids encouraged, but it will also benefit those taking part as well.

For Kids: It’ll embed in them a connection to world missions in general and Western France in particular. This connection is then part of their early memories, paving the way for greater missions involvement later on.
For Seniors: It allows them to contribute in a meaningful way, even if a limited income hinders them from giving financially the way they’d like or if mobility issues prevent them from getting out regularly.

Over time, these kids or seniors are becoming supporters even if they can’t offer financial support at this time. To get back to Steve Shadrach’s quote… this is how we raise supporters.

Raising Children with a Global Outlook

…that reminds me. I wanted to tell you about he fourth workshop we attended at General Conference: “Raising Children with a Global Outlook.” It’s facilitators were Angie Clark (author of numerous resources on developing kids’s prayer), Linda Poitras (WEC staff, author & retired missionary) and Cylinda Nickel (MK Ministries).

The goal… help children develop a sensitivity to God and to the work of missions in a global environment. Here are some steps that will help accomplish that.:Kids_IamGlobal_2 Sophie

  1. Your passions is important. Kids will mirror you so let them see passion for missions and the work of God in you.
  2. Results will come when you know what the goal is… be patient and be intentional about planning.
  3. Nurture their gifts. Mentoring is training an individual to mimick/imitate the behaviour attitudes of another whereas nurturing focuses on their interest in involvement.
  4. If you don’t like the results you’re seeing initially…. change yourself. Don’t seek to change them first off.

Esther 4:14

“For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father’s house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

This passage of scripture, Shared by Sis. Poitras, is relevant for a couple of reasons…

  1. It underscores the value of each child. Who knows what the Lord has planned for them?  Getting them connected to missions could lead to a child making a difference across the world or in their city.
  2. The numeral reference (4:14) is also a target age-bracket for secular marketers: from computer games to clothing and more.  If they can get a child “hooked” on their product at a young age there’s a good chance that they’ll have them for ages!  How much more in the Kingdom and Work of God!

Tips & Resources

Tips for growing a child with a global vision:

  • Kids_IamGlobal_2 TimoWhen you find them looking out their window… ask them how they can impact the place where they are living, right now.
  • Adopt another missionary family… in particular with a child their age. Pray for and connect with them regularly
  • Get them to hold a globe in their hands and pray for different places in the world.

Resources:

Now…. go grow some global kids… !
Thanks for stopping by today… Let what you read inform your prayers.

 

 

#IAmGlobal

For today’s post I’m reaching back to the Global Missions Service at this year’s UPCI General Conference… thinking not only about the incredible things that God did that night, but the “trickle-down” effects of that service as well.

UPCIGC_GMService

$4.3 Million Dollars

That’s what was raised in the span of roughly 2 hours, by 6-7,000 people in one room and more that were watching via streaming video. It didn’t happen by itself however…

The service began as many do: Anointed singing, some preliminaries and Liz & I were invited to participate in the parade of nations. What an honour! Then someone introduced the #IamGlobal offering that was about to be taken. Missionary kids began heaving inflatable globes through the audience and Liz caught a couple, with the help of missionary to Ireland, Cindy McFarland (pictured above). People or churches offering $5,000 or more would receive a small “I am Global” crystal globe. Some went up to do that but more went once the number dropped below $1,000.

Then something changed. Pastor @AnthonyMangun (Alexandria, LA) got up to preach. #WowQuote of the evening was this:

“We’re very quick to use the term apostolic on our facebook & twitter profiles, but before we use that term next, we need to also look at our bank accounts.”

… his implication: does our giving reflect the same pattern of sacrificial giving as seen in the life of the apostles?

IamGlobalSomething happened. Conviction swept in and many people gave offerings larger than $5,000…without the promise of a trinket. One person was selling a business for $150,000.00 and that money has already been received by Global Missions.

Therein we see the power of the word of God: to convict the hearts of Christians and bring about sacrificial giving for the purpose of global missions. What caused that miracle offering:  the teaching of God’s word received by soft hearts.

More than an offering

I love the name of the offering… “I am Global”,  because every time we say it we:

  1. Reaffirm our connection to that miracle offering and
  2. we reiterate the need to look for a harvest beyond ourselves.

Our Kids are Global

Kids_IamGlobal_1Liz brought back a globe for each of the Kids. They weren’t in that service, but we want them to be connected to that same spirit… to see themselves as Global.

Of course, they’ll see themselves as Global by virtue of the fact that they’ll be living in France for a time, but more than that, we remind them that they’re not just going to France to “watch mom & dad do their missionary thing,” rather, God wants to use them as well: whether through helping with music in the church or showing the love of God to new friends outside the church.

Prayer

  • Pray that God prepares our kids; that they truly grow to see themselves as Global. That he use them to Advance His Kingdom.
  • Later this evening we’ll be ministering in the first French service being organized by Pastor Mike Noel of Life Church, in Campbellton, NB. Pray for revival among the French community of northern New Brunswick.

Thank you for your prayers… they make you part of #Revival_inFrance!

“Jesus’ Legacy of Prayer”

… in the words of the formidable Vesta Layne Mangun, claiming to be apostolic and having a weak or absent prayer life is like “Picnicking on the border of Hell”. I debated as to whether or not to make that the title of this post… but then thought again.

Let me give you the third run-down in the mini-series of posts dedicated to workshops we attended at General Conference.

Jesus’ Legacy of Prayer

This was the title of Sis. Mangun’s workshop on… you guessed it, prayer.  Let me just start out by saying this in my own defense. “Have you ever tried to take notes during a Vesta Mangun message?” …it’s not easy.

  1. VLM

    Photo from #BOTT14

    First and foremost, the tendency is to sit there, somewhat in awe of the conviction and passion with which she communicates her subject, her anecdotes and her extensive real-life experience.

  2. Secondly… her style is more a string of very relevant “zingers” (*think T.F. Tenney*) mixed in with relevant experience and references to scripture.
  3. Thirdly… it’s like trying to keep track of the bullets coming out of a rapid-fire weapon. It all comes “fast & furious”.

That being said… Let me give you some of the…

Highlights

We must follow Christ’s example of prayer:
“Be ye followers of me (Paul), even as I also am of Christ.” 1 Cor. 11.1

  1. Jesus prayed when he was alone in the garden, when on the mountain top and when in the wilderness. There is always room for prayer!
  2. We see Jesus praying 9 times in Matthew, 8 times in Mark, 13 times in Luke and 5 times in John.
  3. Jesus prayed about everything at all times.
  4. Jesus doesn’t start with the small things and “build up” to the big ones. Jesus starts with the impossible and revival followed… so Think big! Pray big!
  5. Any strength or ability that we have becomes nothing of eternal value without prayer. (#WowQuote)
  6. Jesus’ prayer life had priority over his social life.  Mt. 14.23
    (it also had priority over his physical rest, but I didn’t catch the reference in Luke)

Six Zingers

  1. “You’re a sitting duck without prayer.”
  2. “We can’t be apostolic with a weak or absent prayer life.”
  3. “We’re not praying about the things that we spend a lot of time talking about.”
  4. “Knock (in prayer) as you would knock to get into the ark if you were drowning outside.”
  5. “Prayer can be considered the school of hard knocks… sometimes you have to knock hard… but it’s school and we’re learning (about prayer).”
  6. “No other preparation can be effective if there’s been no preparation of prayer.”

Supplemental Reading on Prayer

If you want to read more about prayer… look through the following books of the Bible:

  • Esther
  • Nehemiah
  • Ezra
  • Daniel
  • Samuel

That’s all for today…

Thanks for following what we’re doing!  Over the next couple of posts, look for one on Saturday concerning our kids “Going Global” and then another that I’m working on which will deal with the benefits of deputation… (yep, you heard right… benefits).

Now I definitely feel like I should go pray!

 

Timeline of The Call

Here is a look at the timeline detailing how God connected us to French-speaking Europe and eventually western France in particular… over time.
“He who began a good work is faithful to complete it!”
Philippians 1.6

 

Timeline (web)

 

 

What do you think?

Can you see the hand of the Lord at work, leading, guiding and preparing things in advance… leading us, over time, into the center of His will for our family?

If so, we are still in need of financial partners whose gifts will enable us to advance the Kingdom of Christ in the city of Châtellerault. Would you consider partnering with us?  Click here for a Partner Form and instructions on how to go about supporting our family.

Thank you for your prayers… by them, you too are par of #Revival_inFrance!

The Dynamics of Soulwinning

This is the second workshop from General Conference that I’m going to highlight. I’m not presenting them in the order that we attended them necessarily… pretty much just a random order. My eyes landed on the notes for this one… and it’s a good one!

Rev. Eli Lopez

UPCIGC14 welcome

The first thing you need to know about this particular session is that it was pretty much  standing room only!  We met someone we knew outside the room and when we asked them if they were just arriving or leaving, they answered that they were just arriving and wanted to enter, but that people were lining the walls. We walked in anyway and a family with a couple of small children got them to move so that Liz & I could have a seat. YES… First victory!  (although, you’ll note that I was unable to get a decent photo of the speaker… we were further back than my iPhone could handle)

The second thing that you need to know is who the facilitator was… Bro. Eli Lopez, Director of Ministries and Senior Associate Pastor at Stockton California’s Christian Life Center. He’s got an impressive C.V. and has a great deal of responsibility in this incredible church for such a young man. Definitely Kudos!

Now for some of the highlights:

3 Battles of a Soulwinner

  1. Complacency: It takes effort to overcome complacency, for it is much easier to do what we’ve always done rather than trying something new.  …to stay with those we know rather than get to know someone new.  Yet the gospel is not just for us:  Jesus is the propitiation for our sinsand not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.”  1 John 2.2
  2. Selfishness: Things will really begin to change and growth will be visible when we get to the point of thinking about others more than we think about ourselves.  It’s not about our comfort, but about their eternal life…
  3. Weariness: Remember… “We will reap, if we faint not!”  Galatians 6.9

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3 Things to overcome those Battles

  1. The Power of Purpose: Truly understanding our purpose will help us overcome complacency, selfishness and weariness… “The motivation that took Jesus to the cross will take us to the lost.”  Jesus didn’t consider the harvest a future event, but rather a present and a pressing need!
  2. The Power of Prayer: Matthew 9.35 relates a prayer request that Jesus made to his disciples: “Pray therefore that the Lord of the harvest sends our workers into the harvest.”  If Jesus’ identity, as the Lord of the Harvest, was wrapped up in the harvest, then shouldn’t we, as his followers be likewise?  As they began to pray about the harvest, they began to take on responsibility for it… after that, Jesus sent them out into the same harvest that they’d been praying for!  Who better to go but them that have taken on responsibility in prayer?
  3. The Power of the Personal: Statistics vary in different parts of the country, but there’s no disputing that a significant factor in people coming to church remains that of personal contact. We can be active (going toward them) or passive (waiting for them to come to us)… intuitively we all know which one is better.  We are commanded to “GO and make disciples…” Give them a compelling reason why they should want to come to church!

“Ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost has come upon you…
and ye shall be witnesses unto me…”

Acts 1.8

Thank you Bro. Lopez!  Really a great seminar!

Upcoming Posts…

  • Saturday – An info-graph showing the growth our relationship with, and the call to, western France.
  • Next Wednesday – Highlights from General Conference Workshop #3

Prayer

  1. Pray that God helps us, through his power, to grow as soulwinners while in France.
  2. We’ve begun the process of applying for our visa from France… (Passport renewal done this week) and we’ll have to visit the French Consulate in Montreal in the coming weeks. Pray that each step in the process goes smoothly and that we find favour among men & women.

 

Here’s to #Revival_inFrance

A little crown

Villages_ChatEnvirons_sq_sm

Take a look at the image to the right… What do you see?

Most people would see or notice 3 things:

  • A bunch of words… and with the exception of “La” and “Le”, most of them are illegible.
  • The dominant colours are three shades of blue and green.
  • The font resembles a casual handwritten script.

If you said any or all of these, you’d be entirely correct. That’s really about all that one could say with any degree of certainty for the text size is too small to derive any meaning from what’s written.

From a Distance

In fact, what you are looking at is a word cloud which shows the names of 94 towns and villages that lie within a short drive of the city of Châtellerault. La is associated with La Roche-Posay and Le is part of the name Le Rigny. These will be place names that we will be seeing on a regular basis… on road signs, maps, etc.

I realize that it is small and difficult to read, so as you get to the bottom of this post, you will see a larger version of the same image, and will perhaps be able to pick out the names of places that you might be familiar with.

Why do I place emphasis on what could appear to be a random collection of place names? …Simple, it’s a question of…

The Crown

If you recall, on Wednesday I referred you back to a post that I wrote last year about a vision the Lord had given me concerning Châtellerault: there would be a crown around the city and that crown would actually be a number of Home Bible Studies, Preaching Points and one day Daughter Works that would surround the city.  Well dear reader, it’s entirely possible, indeed probable, that some of the places named in this photo could be ripe for revival. Certainly every one of these towns and villages house individuals and families that are looking for something to fill a void in their life. They just don’t realize that only Jesus can fill the deepest void.

Today, would you pray over these 94 towns and villages. You may not be able to read each place name, but the LORD knows them intimately. Would you pray a circle around the city of Châtellerault… that God would pour out the light of Jesus, preparing people now for the revival that is already on its way.

In Jesus’ name!

Thank you readers, for partnering with us in prayer!
By doing so, you are part of #Revival_inFrance !

Villages-Chat-Environs-sq

 

 

GC Workshop #1

In today’s post I’m going to start a series of posts that will give you highlights of some of the workshops that we attended while at General Conference and how we think that they will help us to see God’s work move forward during our time in France.  First of all though, let me tell you about the…

Warm Welcome in St. Louis

UPCIGC14 welcome

I was surprised to see the extent to which the city of St. Louis rolled out the red carpet (or at least, the red banners for us). These banners were all over the downtown core along with similar themed welcome signs in several of the hotels & welcome areas as well.

There were also some black ones around town for another convention that was being held in the same venue: Organo Gold; a network marketing company that sells pre-packaged coffee (Someone did try to recruit Liz as she sat drinking her Starbucks one day: “Does Starbucks ever send you a cheque for drinking their coffee?” the salesperson asked… oh dear!)

Simplify

You may have noticed a change to the top navigation menu since the last time you visited the site. If not… take a quick moment to scroll up and look at it now.

I’d been wanting to add a “Contact Us” page to make it easier for us to connect, but with 7 menu choices already there, that would’ve been a bit much. The compromise… I grouped The Destination, The Dream and The Team beneath a single heading The Mission” , allowing me to add the new page and still reduce the options across the top, making navigation a bit more simple.

This is just one small tweak (for now) after being inspired by Rev. Lee Wells‘ #UPCIGC14 workshop…

Social Media & Church Planting

LeeWellsNot only is churchplanter Rev. Wells pastor of Landmark Fellowship Church, in Rockwall Texas, but he is also founded iChurch Marketing which aims to provide churches with new tools for a new generation. The workshop gave me ideas to help improve this blog, but it will undoubtedly lead to things that we’ll implement when in France as well.

Thanks Bro. Wells, you likely just became part of revival in France!

Here are the top 3 tidbits that I took away from that seminar:

  1.  The church’s website and social media presence have become the church’s new front door.
    (90% of potential guests will check the web first – looking for your church’s website or Facebook page – before they ever approach your real front door. If they don’t find us, they will find someone else.)
  2. 75% of Google search users never go beyond the first page search results.
    (Make sure you do everything possible to ensure that keywords and other SEO measures are optimized for your site so that you’ll be on that first page)
  3. This year, web searches from mobile devices are expected to overtake searches from a desktop or laptop.
    (Websites therefore must be mobile compatible)

When in France…

The church in Châtellerault currently has neither a website, a Facebook page or any other online presence. This is not entirely uncommon in France. There has traditionally not been as much emphasis on web presence there as there is in North America. I believe this will actually work to our advantage, because as we develop an attractive site and web presence for the church there, it will certainly stand out there in the region. I will, of course, let you know when that comes online.

Upcoming post…

Finally for today… do you remember the post where I talked about the “Big & Little Crowns” that surround Paris and how God used that image to speak to and through me on the day that he called us to France? I’m going to come back to that image in Saturday’s post, I hope you’ll come back to pick up on it.

If you don’t remember that original post, why not go here and read it to refresh your memory.
See you Saturday!

Headed Home – #UPCIGC14

Making another attempt at composing on the iPad since we’ll be on our way back home as of Saturday morning, by the time many of you will be reading this. Incredible to have gotten to Conference this year… So thankful to My Pastor for inviting Liz & I to come.

New Partners

I won’t take too much time today as it’s been a very short night and we’ll soon be heading to the airport. However, it was good to run into two of our newest PIMs: Rev. Scott Sistrunk of greater Detroit, Michigan and Rev. Kevin Wallace, originally an Atlantic District fellow, but who currently pastors in Jacksonville, NC.

Thank you Bros Sistrunk & Wallace: thank you for your support and thank you for being part of revival in France!!

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Special Ladies

we also got to meet two very special ladies (among many)… We ran into bro & Sis Nowacki here at conference. They, of course, are central to the work in France and it was a nice surprise to see them (pictured here is Sis Nowacki with Liz)!

Last but not least, we met Sis Cylinda Nickel, who works with MK Ministries (MK = missionary kids). She will be a key part of coming alongside our kids during the time in France, to encourage them and help us help them.

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That’s all for now…

as I said, just a short one for today… Will go into more depth on next weeks posts, but wanted to share a couple of highlights!

Thanks for being with us today!

From St. Louis – #UPCIGC14

Today represents a couple of “firsts”… First time attending the United Pentecostal Church’s Annual General Conference, and first time composing a blog post on an iPad! Let’s see how this goes!

Along the Miramichi

Before we get to St. Louis, let me tell you briefly about last weekend. We got to spend some time, for the second time, along the Miramichi River Valley. The first time we were in Gray Rapids with Bro. Graham Russell, and the Pentecostals of Miramichi, in Miramichi City with Bro. Peter Long. This time though, we were with Bro. & Sis Carroll in Doaktown for their morning service followed by evening service in McNamee, NB, just a bit down the road, with Bro. & Sis Cromwell.

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Pictured above are; (a) from McNamee, Pastor & Mrs Allison Cromwell along with Liz & I and (b) a look at the missions wall at the church in Doaktown, already proudly displaying some 37 UPCI missionary families (silly us, we were enjoying our time & conversation so much that we neglected to get a photo together with the Carrolls). We are so thankful to both of these churches for partnering with us for the duration of our time in France. They are part of the revival that God will bring to France.

UPCI General Conference

First of all, I want to express how grateful I am to our pastor for bringing us with he and Sis. Carter. As I mentioned, this is our first time at General Conference and we are so glad for the chance to be here before heading away in January.

We are looking forward to hearing some great preaching, powerfully feeling the moving of God’s Spirit, attending a number of informative workshops and connecting with some great people!! In fact, it has already happened…. We stopped by the AIM booth and found fellow New Brunswickers Jayne Taylor, Danielle Martin and James Poitras. In addition to them we also ran into Abigail Thompson (another AIMer to France who we met this summer while in Bordeaux).

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Global Missions Service

Tonight, we are especially looking forward to the Global Missions service. Not only will we get to hear Bro. Anthony Mangun (I just love Bro. Mangun), but we will also have the distinct pleasure of walking in with all our our global missionaries. What an honour… These people are heroes!!

That’s all for now…

…except, I might just say that, as far as blogging on the iPad goes… Gimme a full-fledged keyboard any day. Definitely a bit more laborious BUT… I’m also thankful to be able to update without having to carry the laptop… It did make for a lighter carry-on!

Thanks for being with us today!