Beginning October 5, we'll begin our Vision Raising project. That day we'll look at what is going on "at church," that is, in our building and youth "sheep shack." We'll look at worship, education, caring ministry and everything else we do as disciples at 280 3rd St. SE, Cokato, MN. We'll share scripture, pray, have an offering of ideas and prayerfully how each of us is called by God to be involved, either in what is happening now or in new ventures "at church." The next week we'll do something similar with how we are called in community, world mission, social ministry, and evangelism. Then, on October 19th, we'll focus on how we can support and equip those who are called, coming alongside them and providing what they need.
What's "equip" mean in this sense? On the door of my office it says "Equipment Room." This comes from the scriptures in Ephesians 4:11-13 where we're told to "equip" God's people "for the work of ministry." As a pastor, I help equip people for their work, and, in turn, the congregation equips me and our staff through salaries, building, utilities, supplies and lots of prayer.
Yesterday we prayed for Amanda Carlson, a young adult member of our congregation who is soon on her way to Ndola, Zambia In an email today, she told us that she and the other "Spark Interns" have started a blog. You can read it at http://sparkglobalinterns.blogspot.com/. But we not only prayed for her. We also helped equip her with funds which will help her on her mission journey.
Every part of God's mission needs equipping prayer and support. I hope you'll be a part of "equipping" God's people for their work wherever you are.
Here's a the letter from Amanda:
Muli Shani Friends and Family!
I hope this email finds you well! As you know I am about to embark on my internship in Zambia this upcoming Wednesday and I thoroughly appreciate all your support and encouragement of my participation in this internship! I am extremely excited to see how God will use me in Ndola and to be involved and active in one of my passions! Just to remind you of my responsibilities while there, I will be a Teacher's Associate at the Hope Community school. This entails several different responsibilities, but mainly teaching English courses to the students, particularly the seventh graders who are preparing to take a test to get into the government school, tutoring students, and helping the teachers advance their English proficiency. In addition to these responsibilities I will also be working with the orphanage in various activities, such as after school programs and further tutoring, and also building relationships with the people in Ndola.
I will be gone for six months and want to do my best to stay in touch and share my experiences with you! I will have internet access and would thoroughly love to hear from you! The other interns and I have also created a blog that will be updated hopefully quite frequently. That address is http://sparkglobalinterns.blogspot.com so feel free to check that for updates and to leave comments! Also I will be able to receive mail. International postage is required for letters, but if you are interested in sending things via packages it is encouraged to do so through DHL or FedEx. That mailing address is:
Hope Fellowship Ministries
Maina Soko Rd.
P.O. Box 71480
I am very thankful for your support and feel blessed to be able to share this experience with you. I ask for your continued prayer support as this experience begins, for the safety and health of all the interns, and for our willingness to allow God to use us in the ways in which He has intended.
May God's peace continue to be with you.
Lesa ami pale! (God Bless you!)