WMW in a Nutshell

Great weekend at the World Mission Workshop in Searcy, AR. Tons of folks who are serious about taking the gospel to distant and not-so-distant places. Perhaps the most surprising part of the weekend was the number of people viewing North America as a viable location for mission work. Nearly every class on North American missions, urban ministry, or church planting was full of vibrant believers (mostly young people) see themselves as missionaries to their own continent. Praise God!

We got to meet a few of these folks who will be arriving in Boston at exactly the same time as the Holts next summer (complete coincidence — NOT!). We spent a considerable amout of time with a Boston team from Harding University, and we soon found out that our visions for evangelism and discipleship in a relational way in Boston were almost identical (again, complete coincidence — NOT!). We are looking to reside in different parts of Boston, but this is a good thing, not a bad thing. We can pray and cast vision with one another for the entire city of Boston, not just certain neighborhoods. (by the way, we are told that no fewer than five more teams are scheduled to land in Boston to do kingdom work beginning next summer, and several hundred folks are “very interested” in learning more about what God is doing in the Northeast — I’d say God is moving.)

These are exciting times. God is raising up missionaries to America alongside missionaries to Sudan. He is calling his community out of self-gratification and indulgence to serve the culture in which it lives. Whether we have formal training or not (and if you want formal training, the place to be is at ACU…winkwinknudgenudge), we must all begin seeing the work that lies ahead of us in America as mission work. I want to re-print a quote that I published a few months back (far before I surpassed 10,000 hits — thanks, faithful readership!) because I think it illustrates the calling of the church in our culture:

I simply argue that the cross be raised again at the center of the marketplace as well as on the steeple of the church. I am recovering the claim that Jesus was not crucified in a cathedral between two candles, but on a cross between two thieves; on a town garbage heap; at a crossroad so cosmopolitan that they had to write His title in Hebrew and in Latin and in Greek…at the kind of place where cynics talk smut, and thieves curse, and soldiers gamble. Because that is where He died, and that is what He died about. And that is where churchmen ought to be, and what churchmen should be about.
— Ian Thomas, 20th century theologian and author

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If you’re in the mood for a striking story (potential sermon story material!), read this. If you can get past the annoying author, I think you’ll like it.

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Also, I’ve never much been into the lifestyles of “hit harlots” on the blogosphere. Hit harlots will do anything and everything (sell themselves on the Internet, so to speak) to collect hits on their blog sites. I would, however, like to thank the faithful readership after the most recent milestone — 10,000 hits. When I began this blog in January, I never thought it would be read by anyone besides maybe my wife and parents. I pray that it is an edifying part of your “spiritual blog-mation.” Again, thanks.

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