Friday, February 7, 2014

I Think He Wants More

Last night we held a meeting for high school students interested in participating in our International Mission Trip this year. For the past four years our focus for international missions has been in Surco, Peru, about three hours outside Lima. But since our partnership with International Christian Youthworks last year brought us two interns from Europe, Alex and Ute, a new opportunity emerged for us to scout possible mission opportunities in that part of the world.

As you would imagine, telling a group of high school students that we are going to England is received a bit differently than telling them you are going to a third world country. In our meeting last night I was very clear with students and parents that our church is not in the business of sponsoring student tours to Europe. This trip, like all others we take, is about investing in God’s transformational work through His Son, Jesus Christ. This will be a working trip that requires us to step out of our comfort zones. This isn’t a “comfy” trip so students can see another part of the world.

To convey that sentiment, I felt led to make a more concerted effort to assist students in defining their calling to participate on this trip. Students desiring consideration to participate have to complete the following requirements: Complete a mission trip application, complete a survey, complete a 500 word essay describing why they feel God calling them to go, interview with a 5-person council, and complete a community service project.

As I laid out these requirements I could see an obvious widening of the eyes in our students…and I was thankful. These parameters, you see, are not intended to be barriers. Rather, they are intended to help students identify with what Christ may, or may not, be calling them to do. We are striving to push students to a level of excellence commensurate with the high calling Christ calls us to as His children. These parameters raise the level of commitment, desire, and calling while helping students identify the magnitude of each in their desire to participate on this trip.

I hope you’ll join me in finding ways to “raise the bar” of excellence in our commitment to Christ as believers in Him. Although His gift of grace is exactly that, a free gift to us, it didn’t come without the ultimate cost - His death on a cross. His ultimate sacrifice for us is worth our paying attention to excellence in our work for His Kingdom. We will absolutely well represent Him in our ministry and missions both domestically and internationally. He wants our best; let’s offer it to Him with great passion.

Please let me know if there’s anything I can pray about for you or your family.


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