Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A Piece of the Mosaic

Tessera: each, individual piece of a mosaic

We believe that God wants you to be a “tessera” in the redemptive work our family will be a part of in Haiti.  There are several ways you can become one of the many pieces of this mosaic of ministry.  This week I'm going to highlight three of the ways you can be a part of Mosaic Village.

I love these thoughts from John Piper (from this sermon) on being a part of world missions by sending out missionaries.

...There is a big difference between a church that “has” missionaries (on the back of their bulletin or as a line item in their budget) and a church that “sends” missionaries.  To send in a manner worthy of God is to so recognize the supreme importance of proclaiming the name of God in word and deed among the nations that we will do whatever we can to support those who go out for the sake of the name—spiritually, practically, emotionally, financially. 

We'll be the very first to admit that until we listened to the Radical Series, we were not sending missionaries like John Piper describes above.  We were heartbroken.  God is good.  He wants good things for His children.  When He asks us to be a part of global missions, He is asking us to be a part of something good and rewarding in an eternal way.  We were so sad that we had been disobedient and were probably missing out on a lot of "good" by not being actively involved in missions by sending out missionaries in real, tangible ways. 

Here are some questions we began asking ourselves months ago in regards to sending missionaries:

Do we know the missionaries our church supports?

Do we pray for them?

Do our kids know them?

Do they hear us praying for those missionaries?

Are we involved in the lives of missionaries? Do we send them emails? Do we encourage them? Do they know we are praying for them? Do they know we are rejoicing with them as they see people come to know the Lord and see lives saved (spiritually and physically?)

Do we truly see the missionaries we're sending as "going" while we're here "sending"? Do we see our relationship as ACTIVE. Do we see our relationship as a true partnership. Us sending, them going = both of us living out the great commission.

Do we meet practical needs of the missionaries we're sending? When they need things from the US are we eager to send those items? Arrange places for them stay? Serve them while they are back in the US? Do we even know what their needs are?  

We were not doing any of those things well (and in some cases, at all). We've seen missionaries as people who left to do cool God things, but have not truly felt how connected God wants us to be. We've not lived within the relationship that should exist between a goer and a sender.

If you've been a crappy "sender" and not very involved in world missions, don't feel terrible.  Rejoice in God's grace and goodness.  His mercies are new every single morning.  There is no condemnation in Christ.  No wallowing in guilt.  We simply had to confess how much we had ignored God by totally downplaying the great commission.  Missions is near and dear to God's heart, and we had to confess it had not been near and dear to ours.  Today can be a new day for you and your family.  You can participate in world missions.  By being attached to the work lots of missionaries are doing you can tangibly love the orphan, care for the poor and be a voice for the oppressed and the voiceless.  How exciting.  If your life has been dull, just wait...there's nothing more life bringing than living out the life that God has laid out for us.

Today you can send an email to your church and ask them for a list of missionaries your church supports.  They probably even have websites.  You can probably request a prayer card for each missionary and pray over them.  Noel Piper says they keep prayer cards for missionaries on their kitchen table and pray over one at dinner each night.  What a great idea!

Today...like right now, you can email a missionary you've not kept in contact with and encourage them.  Go write on their facebook wall.  Go show them they are loved and not forgotten by God and by you.

What an adventure God is inviting us to each be a part of through participating in world missions.

For us specifically...the first way you can be a part of Mosaic Village is to pray. 


We'd love for you to know exactly how to pray for us as we're preparing to go to Haiti and while we're in Haiti.  If you'd like to be someone who prays for us and for the people of Haiti, you can either email Aaron (mosaicvillage@gmail.com) or go here and subscribe to the mailing list.  Please include your mailing address because we want to send you a prayer card or magnet for your refrigerator.  Totally surreal.  Never in my life would I have thought our family would be stuck on someone's fridge.  We're a missionary magnet.  When did this happen?  Insane!

I thought I'd pass along this great article from Desiring God Ministries about how to teach kids to love missions.

For those of you who have children, not only do we want to invite you on this journey to Haiti, our kids want to invite your kids.  We have been teaching the boys that God has included them in this move to Haiti.  The other night Aaron told the boys that if God didn't want them to go to Haiti He would have nudged a different couple to go.  But God is asking us to go, and that never means just us as parents.  We want our boys to know that God has a plan and purpose to use them to bring truth, hope, love, redemption, restoration, and peace to the people of Haiti.  So...our kids invite your kids to be a part of what God is doing in Haiti.  We will include prayer requests from the kids and invite the boys to post on the Mosaic Village website from time to time.

And now for that great link:

Let us know if you want to commit to praying for our family.


Kimberly said...

have committed to prayer for you all, please let me know anything specifically you need prayer over.. actually have been praying for you since I heard of Deb's trip with you... also, I added your blog to my feed on my blog so that anyone that checks me out can click on you and check you out.. am furiously working toward being able to provide more tangible support as well. I also have missionaries from my home church that I keep up with, pray for, etc. I am no longer a goer because of physical issues, but I sure can provide support in other ways. To God be the Glory for each of us as we fill in His puzzle!

Ken Summerlin said...

I just discovered your blog and am very interested in your imminent service in Haiti. I returned from a short-term medical mission project in Haiti a couple of weeks ago, have great respect for those who are serving there full-time and wrote an 8 part blog series about it.

I look forward to following your story and will be praying for you.

mandi said...

yes, yes, yes.
you can count on us to pray. i already have visions of all of the care packages i want to send you.
i love that my kids have this summer to get to know you and your kiddos. that way when we pray, when we prepare boxes, they know who we're talking about. like, really know.