Learning and Growing
As I mentioned in the last post, I had a lot to learn when I began with The FLOW! With that in mind, I am delighted to introduce you to Dan Bouchelle, one of the first mission leaders to share wisdom, experience, and knowledge with me. Dan is the President of Mission Resource Network. Dan and fellow staff members have made time for me and members of The Flow Foundation leadership to share principles that guide effective and faithful mission works. The first time I met with Dan I remember taking copious notes as he shared from his vast reservoir of knowledge! He specifically spoke about the types of mission efforts that are working best around the world today to make disciples who make disciples. Of the many ideas we discussed that day, three principles emerged that have helped to shape my thinking and the direction of our foundation.
Here are the three main ideas:
Mission works that God is currently honoring and working through are ones that are:
These ideas are SO different than what I had thought. I believed it was the role of American Christians to go around the world and first convert people to Jesus, and then to help them learn and implement our way of thinking and our practices, based on our culture. I thought that it was important to teach these new Christians how to worship, serve and act like we do in the U.S. Although well-intentioned, we would not just make their churches like ours, we would inadvertently make them dependent on us. Dan and his team helped me to understand that the type of mission work that God is working through today focuses on disciples in each country assuming the roles and responsibilities of making disciples that are like them. These Christians worship in their own ways based on their cultures. They organize and govern themselves in ways that best fit them. And finally, their methods for making disciples will best connect to people of their culture. Dan helped me to see that our role as American Christians is to encourage, support and most importantly learn from, disciples who live and work in different countries and cultures.
I will always feel a deep debt of gratitude to Dan and his fellow MRN members who helped change and shape my worldview of missions and our role as a Foundation. Since that first meeting with Dan and MRN staff, MRN team members have taught me (and my wife Jeanette and The Flow Foundation Board) about Discipleship Making Movements, Discovery Bible Studies, God’s amazing work with Muslim refugees in the Mediterranean Rim, and about the unparalleled growth of house churches in Cuba.
Currently, The Flow Foundation is deeply connected to a work in the Mediterranean Rim where over 200 Muslim Refugees have become disciples of Christ in the past two years. (Look for our newsletter coming out soon for more information about this great mission work). We are honored to work with MRN and their mission teams currently in the Med Rim. We eagerly await news about new teams who will launch soon to take the good news of Jesus to refugees in other Mediterranean countries and cultures.
You can learn more about Mission Resource Network at their website: mrnet.org.
Also, Dan writes a weekly blog article that provides information and inspiration about the world of Christian Missions. You can sign up for Dan’s blog here: https://www.mrnet.org/blog-db.
I like to end each blog with a challenge, so here is this week’s:
Prayer is talked about so often than people (like me) may just push it aside. But here’s something I learned. The number one action you can take to create Disciple Making Movement is to PRAY. Every great disciple making movement has been built on the foundation of prayer and total reliance on God. Spend time every day this week to pray for mission workers leading Muslim refugees to Jesus.
Right now, there are mission teams waiting for Covid-19 travel restrictions to be lessened and for funds to become available so they can share Jesus with Med Rim refugees. Any gift given to The Flow will go directly to fund their work.
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