Last year, Red Culture produced this video. We are continuing to dream about the students, communities and leaders in Iowa. This is a great reminder of where we’re headed!
by Jonathan Barthalow
Some time ago Tom and Heath captured a vision for the college campuses and university students across our state. And now, God is sweeping across eight campus mission fields through the ministry of Chi Alpha, and we know that He has even greater things in store. Because of their leadership and vision Chi Alpha is in place at UNI and seven students were able to encounter God and give their hearts to Him last during the first meeting of the school year!
A crucial aspect of leadership is vision. Without a vision of what could be, we are wandering in the dark only seeing what is, with no direction and little hope for what lies ahead. We need to get a hold of God and ask him for the vision to see things the way He sees them. Perhaps right now, in your home, church or city all you see are things that are not as they should be. Pray for God’s eyes to show you how He sees things. On the college campus, there are many opportunities to look around and be disheartened by all that is broken and distorted, but we choose to celebrate what God is doing in the lives of those who are boldly and confidently at work restoring what has been damaged. We see him at work in the darkest of places, and we’re encouraged by his plans and his work.
The mayor of Newark, New Jersey, Cory Booker, visited the projects and met up with a woman who had lived there all her life. She asked him to look around and tell her what he saw. He said, “I see a drug deal over there, broken down buildings,” and proceeded to tell her everything he could see that was wrong. She turned to him and said, “You can’t help us.” She knew that until he saw the project for what it could be, instead of what it was he would be of no use to them. Let’s be that woman in the lives of the people in our sphere of influence and in our communities.
Serving God is what we are called to do. Preaching, being a pastor, counseling or chairing a committee is what we do because we are servants. But leading is something we do in the midst of all these things. We are always leading.
World Missions in the local church is a great example of how we lead.
- When a missionary visits your church, be there
- Take time to make the missionary your friend
- Read through their materials before they arrive
- Request a bio before they arrive so you can introduce them effectively
- Let your people know this person matters to you
In your preaching, use stories from the Mission field. These stories can be lifted right off the pages of newsletters our missionaries send out; utilize the website of Assemblies of God World Missions.
Recently the publication “Call to Prayer” has been brought online. Check it out here. It’s a great tool to assist you as you lead. In addition to a list of missionaries celebrating birthdays, this site stores articles, videos and other resources available for you to use as tools as you lead your church into a great awareness of God’s desire to win the lost, across the street and around the world. (This publication is also formatted for iPhone, Blackberry and iPad)
As a leader, you it may take time to get people on board with your vision. An old friend of mine once gave me some great advice from his days as a horse trainer. He said, “You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink. But you can keep putting salt in his oats so that eventually he will get thirsty and drink.” Your attitude toward World Missions and Missionaries will be the “salt in their oats” that helps make them interested as well. Communicate your vision for missions clearly and consistently.
Congratulations to Rev. Greg & Sandy Mundis, newly elected World Missions Director. Greg will assume this role upon the retirement of John Bueno, who has served as the Executive Director for the past fourteen years.