by Jack Taylor
FAITH NOW 131 – week of January 30, 2012
Who could believe all the creative ways God is reaching his world. Walking around MissionsFest 2012 at Canada Place with thousands of other believers was energizing and enlightening and exhausting. A Film Festival highlighting key life-stories of transformation happening in India, Asia, Columbia and Kenya pushed us to examine issues of child trafficking, inter-faith dialogue, underground churches, corruption, and human slavery in our world. When you know what is happening you must take a stance to care.
Our Youth and Young Adults had their world rocked by presenters like Shane Claiborne, Geoff Stewart, Andy Steiger, and Jason Ballard. The gauntlet was laid down to make a difference in our world and begin a revolution of making Jesus first in our schools and in our social circles. I had some great talks with individuals doing serious business with God that was going to impact relationships and futures. For those of you praying for youth and young adults – keep it up. God is raising up a generation preparing to impact this world in new and significant ways.
The adult seminars started on Friday afternoon and then reconvened on Saturday from 11 am to 6 pm. Topics included creative outreaches to Muslims, students, Hindus, Asians, First Nations, and refugees. Others included practical helps on writing, prayer, social justice, technology, spiritual warfare and tentmaking. Stories of God’s work in every part of the world flooded over eager hearers and God’s powerful care of people from every tribe and tongue and nation helped raise our understanding of his call for us to go and make disciples from every nation.
This year had a special focus on local ministries and so quite a few of the new booths featured were representative of what God was doing right here. New Hope was one of the booths able to set up and interact with inquirers. Special thanks to Marthe, Khosi, Dev, Esperance, Tanniar, Mark for their volunteer service. Some significant conversations were enjoyed with those who stopped to chat or to pick up some brochures or candy.
Watching some of our Faith volunteers at work was great. Bob and Heidi handling security and oversight, Charles and Pearl handling welcoming and prayer, Jean at the coat check, just to name a few. Hundreds of volunteers humbly serving thousands of seekers created a very special dynamic and the event went fairly smoothly.
In our Plenary Sessions Shane Claiborne shared of his revolutionary experiences working for 10 years with mother Teresa and recently in Iraq. Lorna Dueck shared her faith and insights from the perspective of a well known media personality. T.V.Thomas is an inspirational evangelist who seems to be on the leadership teams of half of the significant influential evangelistic ministries in our country. David Wang brought us to tears with his rendition of how God is transforming the church in China through those who have sacrificed themselves in dark times. Dan Wooley shared his miraculous experience of how God transformed his life as he was trapped underground in a collapsed hotel during the earthquake in Haiti.
All around our world, there are opportunities to be inspired if you expose yourself to what God is doing. Staying isolated and insulated from the family of God in action will only dehydrate your soul. The body needs to be inspired by hearing your story of what God is doing – and not just at your baptism. The body needs to know that you are ready to celebrate what God is doing in someone else’s life by knowing you will listen. One of the key phrases that should be part of Faith’s conversation is simple. “So, what has God been doing in your life this week?”
Of course, if you’re going to ask that question, be prepared to answer it. Part of the way to ensure that a church withers and dies is simply by not taking the time to see how God is doing something in your own life, and then by not taking the time to hear how he is doing something in the lives of others around you. Pray for each other’s stories and praise God for each other’s stories. He is alive and at work in our world. We just have to remind each other during the 51 weeks when Mission Fest isn’t here to do the work for us. Bless you as you change your world.
Feb 10 Date Night Challenge for Couples 6:30p: LE
Feb 12 A special Creationist Speaker-John MacKay from Creatio Science Association of BC- 10a
Faith Family Luncheon-11:30a
Hymn Sing at Shannon Oaks– 7p
Feb 26 Annual General Meeting-6p
Mar 11 Mission Sunday– Special speaker: Pat Emerick (Canadian Directors for Gospel for Asia)-10a
Faith Family Luncheon– 11:30a
Hymn Sing at Shannon Oaks– 7p
Mar 16 &17 Women’s Retreat: LE