11 October 2011

Conversations continue, just not here in awhile

Check out what's happening with Jill in regular updates on Conversations@Intersections, a Jill Shaw blog about conversations, interactions, relationships, with a bit of humour, philosophy, technology and other stuff thrown in for now extra charge.

If you'd like us to pump energy back in to Mission Chicks, get in touch with Jill and see how to get this ball rolling again.

05 May 2008

Journey. Passion. Mission. Community

08 May 2007

Taking Jesus Seriously

Between my regular exposure to missionaries at my home church & camp, I was softened up to the idea that missions was a viable option for someone who claimed Jesus was Lord.

Like what Robert Coleman said in Master Plan of Evangelism,

“The plan of Jesus has not been rejected; we have just done without it. It has been converted into something worthy of remembering, that belongs to the past, but it has not been taken seriously as a norm of conduct for the present.”

Do we take Jesus seriously? Have we forgotten what He went to the Cross for?

It wasn't for my salvation. Or for yours. It was for everyone, for every tribe, tongue & nation.

We don't pray for the lost, the remote or the forgotten. We tend to worry about whether we are comfortable in church, or not. We don't sacrifice so others can hear the news which will make all the difference between whether they spend eternity in hell, or not.

Being a missionary, or participating in the gospel getting right round the world, is to take Jesus seriously.

Anything else is a mockery of name Him as Lord.

Every day 100,000 cars go over the Auckland Harbour Bridge. The people in those cars think they are going to work or to school or shopping or for a manicure . . . .. when in reality they are going one of two places; either to heaven or to hell.

They are oblivious.

We know the God who gives choice in the matter.

We know the Son who provided the choice with His own blood.

We know the Spirit who equips us to speak redemptive analogies into every culture of the world.

And we often wander around as oblivious as the lost, and we ought to be ashamed.

Anyone can be a missionary.
If they know Jesus.
If they know someone who doesn't.
If they are willing to cross whatever cultural barriers exist between themselves and that other person so as to communicate the message, they can be missionaries.

Missionaries have a unique role in that they see obstacles like language, culture socio-economic differences, and they devise plans to hurdle them. They figure out ways around them or through them.

Evangelism is you talking to someone very much like yourself. We gotta do this or our friends & family are at risk!

Missions is seeking out someone who is very different from yourself and creating dialogue in which Jesus can join the conversation. We gotta do this or the effectiveness of what Jesus did on the cross is gonna be limited to a bunch of people who look and sound like us. God is more creative and diverse than just "us".

To have Africans and Latinos worshipping with us at the throne!
To have Asians & Europeans in the crowd!
To have islanders and Eskimos! That will be a party I wanna be at!

27 February 2007

What's the best advice . . .?

Who are your mentors, your examples, and what's the best advice you reckon you've ever received?

I remember when I was a new missionary and I was troubled by some things I saw. Writing to Madonna Burget Spratt who was serving on a whole other continent, responded to my letter and gave me great advice. I've passed that advice on to many other missionareis since then.

In a nut shell she told me, whenever you fling mud, you are sure to get some of it on yourself. There's a time to confront a co-worker or point out their flaws publicly, but as a new missionary on the field, you must be especially careful. She also pointed me to the end of John's Gospel where Peter, upon hearing of his own future, asked about John's. Jesus' reply was, " . . .what is that to you? You follow me!"

I remember many times at Mashoko, sitting with David & Eva Grubbs, & a bottle of cold Coke, rehashing the day's events or wondering how things coulda gone differently. So many times Dave would ASK me questions to bring clarity to my thoughts, rather than just point out what I should have done or what I should do next. The examples Dave & Eva set were more valuable than I knew at the time. I use their approach in my discipling today.

And watching Betty Delaney interact with other missionary ladies and families! She was wise and compassionate, never putting on others what did not fit.

Rosella Reeves showed me, and continues to show me, faithfulness & friendship in service.

Frances Johnson demonstrated hard work and intelligence, never settling for what was known but always thinking there was something new to learn.

I quote or refer to all of these mentors (and my dad) regularly!

From my other peers I learned much about prayer, dedication and hard work. I saw them mess up and they saw me fail miserably. Some of them served with the threat of HIV/AIDS in the specimens they handled everyday. Still, they treated individuals with respect & compassion.

What have you learned from a mentor or someone you respect? Let's create our own Faith Hall of Fame!

21 November 2006

"The best layed plans"

As most of you know things did not go exactly as planned at the convention. I only hope that you gained a bit of information that will help you on your journey through this life as we seek with all of our hearts to follow our Lord.

12 November 2006

As you go . . .

I'm enroute to the Nat'l Missionary Convention. I've been on the move for over 36 hours and my body is telling me to stop! I'll have a few days to get over the jet lag before I meet my friends, co-workers and passionate pray-ers in Indy. After this convention is done, I anticipate that this blog will be a place we can continue meeting, no jet lag, reservations or tipping. The only tips will be the sage advice we share with each other! Watch this space for implementation of ideas we discuss at the seminar on 17 Nov in Indy. The blog should take on a whole new look & feel as we hear other voices from other places. I look forward to the conversation.

07 November 2006

Spiritual Formation: Training for ministry

How ya doin'? No, really? Got the God thing right, or do ya just look good on the outside?
Superficial religiosity won't get it when you're isolated, culturally fatigued and frustrated with your co-workers.

" . . . missing is the recognition that soul cultivation goes before institution building. How do you grow large, healthy, and authentic churches (the current rage) without growing the soul of a leader, which sustains the effort over the long haul?

A second impression: the dreadful casualty list of men and women who do not make it to a tenth anniversary in Christian ministry. Burnout, failure, disillusionment are exacting a terrible toll. I'm amazed how many ministers just disappear, drop off the edge.

A third: the constant conversations I have with younger men and women who confide that they are spiritually dry, unmotivated, despairing, and wondering what to do about it.

. . .
Saint Paul's words to Timothy are too easily ignored in this high-pitched, high-casualty leadership lifestyle of ours: "Train yourself to be godly … godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" (1 Tim. 4:7-8) I smell spiritual formation in these remarks.

The forming of the soul that it might be a dwelling place for God is the primary work of the Christian leader. This is not an add-on, an option, or a third-level priority. Without this core activity, one almost guarantees that he/she will not last in leadership for a life-time or that what work is accomplished will become less and less reflective of God's honor and God's purposes." Gordon MacDonald

What do you do to maintain that intimacy with God that will see you steadfast & vibrant, no matter what Satan throws at you? Tell us so we can learn. Comment below.


23 October 2006

Why do people not care enough about missions to pray? A reporter interviewed two men who were digging ditches. He asked the first, "What are you doing?" He quickly replied, "I'm digging ditches." Asked the same question the second man replied, "I am building a cathedral." The person who only sees what HE is doing, whether it is ushering or getting excited about a friend's marriage or a basketball game, is living life digging ditches. He does not see the big picture. What he needs is vision. What seems to be lacking in many churches is that vision of the big picture that missions is building the kingdom of God, and that through prayer for missions believers become an integral part of the building process. Until people in the pew catch that vision from their leaders, prayer for missions will continue to be viewed as just digging ditches.
(Sent to Brigada from Tom in Russia) http://www.brigada.org

16 September 2006

Some journeys are metaphorical. Some real journeys, like walking a labyrinth, can be illustrative of life. I find I think differently in the thin air of NZ's South Island. Away from my Palm Pilot, phones, laptops, calendars & meetings, I am not distracted by technology, but only by the birds in the mornings, the alpine foliage & the magnificant views. What journey have you been on? Where do you feel nearest to God? How is He different on the mountain tops than in the valleys? How is He different when you are near to Him compared to when you are far away? What consistency is there in your faith & feelings as you travel?

Thoughts from a Pooh: Homos & Hunger

Food for thought. Do people mostly know what I am or what I am against?

Integrity in Faith in Mission in Journey in Life