You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many.
– 2 Corinthians 1:11 (ESV)
Here is a brief summary of recent public ministry as a source of thanksgiving to God.
1. January 11-15 – Atlanta, GA
Taught a Seminary Course (MIN 5310 Biblical Foundations of Leadership) to 20 students. I am constantly amazed at the quality of men and women God allows me to join in their journey. There were pastors, church planters, youth pastors, small group pastors, chaplains and missionaries in training, counselors and business people making a mid-career transition. They came from over dozen states.
2. January 20-23 – Colorado Spring, CO
MTI Board meeting and Networking with Barnabas Intl. on Missionary Leadership Training. Steve Sweatman and Scott Shaun of Barnabas Intl. have research indicating a real need in practical orientation, training and ongoing coaching for missionary team leaders. This first meeting was a way to review the need, launch us in prayer, seeking to discern how God wants us to contribute.
3. Jan 27-29 – Greensboro, NC
Anglican Mission in the Americas (AMIA) – Workshop on Effective Church & Networking with a CIU booth. In spite of a major snow storm arriving late Friday and causing many to scatter I had 47 in my workshop on Thursday w/ several staying around or coming by the booth to talk further. We distributed a note taking outline with resources which also contained some nice ads for CIU. All of these were distributed. I also sold 15 copies of Time Management as Life Management. We had a good dinner and other visits with CIU alumni participating in this exciting missions movement by the Spirit.
4. Jan 29-30 – Columbia, SC
Consulting with elders and staff at the annual retreat of Sandhills Community Church. What a privilege to be asked to help lead the elders, governing board and staff of Sandhills. Since it is my home church it was a special encouragement to be invited. I sensed a special anointing of the Spirit and saw God show up in humbling, unifying, and clarifying the hearts of those God has provided to lead our family in His name.
5. February 4 – Columbia, SC
CIU Board Meeting and Alumni Assoc. Leadership Council meetings. In spite of some an national economic downturn and other challenges it is so refreshing to be with leaders who long to move forward for Kingdom work and who set a tone of faith and prayer.
February 18-20 – Orlando, FL
The Association of Biblical Higher Education ABHEis one of the accrediting agencies for Columbia Intl University. CIU gave each participant at the annual conference a copy of Robertson McQuilkin’s Five Smooth Stones: Essential Biblical Principles of Ministry. and I was able to give a review and share how we are using the book as a text at CIU. I was also asked to lead a workshop on partnership between schools and churches and other ministry organizations. Ralph Enlow, President of ABHE, gave a very positive message on the expansion and creative development of Biblical Higher Education.
February 25- March 8 – North Africa/Middle East After 12 days with brothers and sisters in Christ who suffer for their faith I am challenged to examine my own heart. We met believers who had been imprisoned, shot and persecuted in other ways for seeking to spread the Gospel. But in the midst of a conversation on the risks of email, cell phones and other exposure one brother said we simply cannot begin to live and make our decisions on the basis of fear. We must daily trust God and be about obeying him. Fear is our greatest enemy because it can intimidate and paralyze our obedience. Because obedience is a response of loving God — we should be wise but can never back away from obeying Him. — That is my paraphrase of how the translation of his words came to me.