Here’s something shocking you might not have known: Canada has a higher rate of Youth Suicide than the U.S.! This is why a ministry like Word of Life is needed.
In this day when so many (even Christians) are down on Absolute Truth, we have failed to pass on our values to our children, who are either afraid to ask questions of their “deeply religious” parents, or their questions just don’t get answered intelligently. This is why Word of Life Bible Institutes are so important. They give a year, usually in between high school and college, to give kids the grounding they need; especially today when people are not just indifferent to Christianity, but aggressively against it.
That was the first seminar we heard at the Missions Conference last Sunday (and one of the missionaries we had for lunch was an administrator at WOL, Owen Sound).
At another seminar, the missionary talked about “Coffee as mission”! This guy (oops, can’t remember his name) was not a charismatic speaker, but he knew what he was talking about. He said “a factory can be just as transformational to a community as a church”. So now you know what his organization does in other countries (mainly Africa, I think). They do lots of other things as well, i.e. a child sponsorship program and other things. But I just love the idea of coffee beans roasting in the basement of their office… They also got the contract for the macadamia nuts that Subway uses in their cookies, so there’s a Christian excuse to eat cookies if I ever saw one!
Missionaries these days are incredibly intelligent and creative. It’s just wonderful to see, not only the various things they do, but the ordered way of reaching people–including research about the best ways, etc. And most of them seem to realize the also-importance of discipleship (not just the initial evangelism).
This guy (oh yeah–Allan Bussard, with Integra Foundation, serving Slovakia, Kenya, Ethiopa) said something interesting: Justice trumps worship. He referred to Jesus talking about those who say “Lord, Lord…”, but He ends up having to say “I never knew you”; and the chapter in Isaiah where God says He is sick of the Israelites’ sacrifices–because they were just ritual and obviously not from their heart. Why was that obvious? Because they were not helping the “orphans and widows”. In other words, not acting justly/promoting justice. Worship you see, can be all words and no action, which makes those words pretty empty!
However, I would question whether justice actually trumps worship… I think both are important. Like the old saying “Share the Gospel, and if necessary use words”–I would refer to a recent argument that says “But words ARE necessary.”
These notes-posts are longish, but at least there is only one more for this one. And of course, I’m saving the best for the last… about an AMAZING couple!!