When the unreached are your neighbors… and friends

When the unreached are your neighbors… and friends

A third-generation Chinese believer gains a heart for the lost around her for the first time “I’ve never read the Bible like this before!” Though my friend Nina had heard the 1 Samuel 17 story of David and Goliath countless times, she was blown away to learn the deeper truths of this particular passage for the first time. We were in the middle of our weekly Xplore study when it all seemed to click in Nina’s mind. We read verses 46 and 47 that said, “All the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the LORD saves not with sword and spear… (emphasis added),” and from that point on, Nina’s eyes were opened to God’s overarching purpose of redemption for the whole world. God clearly displayed his desire and purpose for David’s defeat of Goliath: so that His name may be worshipped by all the earth. Nina shared that she always had been taught that the importance of the story of David and Goliath, however, was only to teach that God is bigger than the giants you face. She had no idea that the original intent was so that God would receive glory from all peoples, until she read this particular passage herself with a fresh perspective. Nina is a third-generation Christian in China, which is very rare. China has been under communist rule for many decades; therefore, the majority of the population is classified as “unreligious.” Her grandparents have incredible stories of God displaying his power through healing and miracles, but the idea of God was somewhat...
Brand-new Christian immediately empowered into missions

Brand-new Christian immediately empowered into missions

A Kenyan student embodies God’s heart for the world just two months after following Christ himself When Thomas first heard about missions, he had only been a Christian for two months. He was still keeping his salvation a secret, still living with his girlfriend, and at that point, he could see no difference in himself from before he was saved and after. Yet when a couple of wazungu (Swahili word for foreigners) working alongside the CMM approached him on his campus talking about God and something about God’s “desire for all people,” Thomas actually listened. And then the funniest thing happened… God gave him a heart for the nations. Thomas grew up in a rural town outside of Nairobi, Kenya, an area whose primary source of income comes from small-scale farming, with households growing just enough to keep their own families alive. Making a living alone was a challenge, and one of the only “ways out” for families in this region is through saving up enough for at least one child to further their education. Attending university is a high privilege for most people in Kenya; therefore, when a child does have this privilege, families often place a seemingly insurmountable amount of pressure for their children to attend university, find a decent-paying job, and then help provide for their families back at home. So when Thomas joined Kenyatta University in 2014, he knew he had to work hard to help his family. But he also knew that at university, there was also “freedom” to do whatever would make him happy. And so his pursuit began. After arriving on campus,...
The Impact of One

The Impact of One

One Xplore Study Impacts Countless Arab Lives Last semester, I sat among a group of believers who shared stories of how God had awakened their hearts to His immeasurable love for the nations. Some explained how they had began praying for the nations regularly, and others explained that they began sharing their faith with their Muslim coworkers. Though their stories were different, they all were gathered in the room together because they shared something in common. They all wanted the Arabian Gulf to experience God’s love for the nations, and they all ended up in the room together because of one guy named Trevor. Trevor is one of those guys who talks to everyone. He is quick to encourage and pray for his friends, and he is bold in sharing his faith with colleagues from other faith backgrounds. He gives of his finances to send others to the unreached, and he gives his time to mobilize those around him. The impact this one man has had on the church in Dubai is significant, but Trevor was not always like this. In fact, up until three years ago, he was disillusioned and completely separated from the church. In Trevor’s words, “All of that changed with a cup of coffee.” After stepping away from the church for thirty years, Trevor found himself re-entering in 2016. Though he was exposed to church in his childhood, he never truly understood the truth about Jesus. So when Jesus began revealing more of Himself to Trevor in 2016, Trevor’s life began to change. Trevor started attending an international church in his city. After six months...
From the Nations to the Nations

From the Nations to the Nations

A Uruguayan-American purposes to say “yes” to God no matter the outcome. Sometimes small challenges and small acts of obedience can cause eternal ripple effects not just for the person mobilized, but also for the countless others he or she will impact. At least that’s the case for Danielle, a quiet young woman whose life was forever changed upon her hearing of God’s global purposes that reach far beyond herself. During a vision trip in January 2017, seven of us interested in joining the CMM Germany field team attended a church in the heart of downtown Frankfurt called Bethel IBC (since renamed to Multination Church). Frankfurt field team leader John Allert was invited to speak to the congregation and shared the vision of mobilization by sharing what God says in His Word, the current status of His world, and how we can participate with God in His work. Many people in attendance were so inspired that they wanted more, and we handed out copies of Xplore (our primary tool for mobilization) to those interested. Little did we know what this quick interaction would lead to in the future. Fast forward to Fall 2017. Our team was completed, fully funded, and then able to move to Frankfurt, Germany. As the team was settling in and visiting churches, we again visited Bethel IBC, this time meeting a 20-something Uruguayan-American named Danielle who was living in Frankfurt. One teammate, Betsy, exchanged contact information with her and arranged to meet up. At the first meeting, Danielle seemed open and willing to learn, but at first glance was not the type of person one...
The Cycle Continues: Persecution in China Increases, the Church Grows

The Cycle Continues: Persecution in China Increases, the Church Grows

We were having an incredible few days of training with nearly 45 believers who were hungry to learn, despite the past year of intensified persecution permeating the Chinese church. We were feeling confident and thankful going into our final session of the Weave training, thinking we had managed to have another event without incident. As the participants were sharing what they felt the Lord was calling them to for their next steps, that’s when it happened…the unexpected knock on the door.  My heart quickened and my palms immediately began to sweat as we all awaited the reality that stood outside, waiting for us to answer. The woman at the door said she was “looking for someone,” so the pastor of the church that was hosting us stepped out into the hallway to speak with her.  While he was out of the room, the participants quickly motioned for my co-worker Melissa and me to go hide in a storage closet. They immediately began putting all materials away, taking down things we had hung on the walls, and hiding our computers and notes. A few minutes later they brought us our phones so we could delete any incriminating material. Melissa and I kept looking at each other like we couldn’t believe this was actually happening.  We would try to pray, but we could not find the words in the midst of the chaos happening inside our own hearts. In those moments I understood Romans 8:26 in a very real way, needing to rely fully on the Holy Spirit to intercede for us when we couldn’t form the words ourselves. Though we...

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