These weeks for us in Taiwan were much patterned by the aftermath of Taifun Morakot or "88" as the Chinese word it, because it happened on Fathers day. The number 88 in Chinese sounds like "Baba", thus naturally making the eight day of the eight month the day of the dads.
Since the academic year after the 28th of August began for the schools wchi we used for volunteer work again most of the volunteer work had to be done by then. Several hundred kids of ruined schools have come to Taipei to take classes here in the capital cities schools. - Learning is just a lifestyle pattern in Taiwan, considered to be important in Chinese society and seen as the key of success in the future. - In the same way SEND Taiwan regards learning about the changing environment as a key for its futural work and the assigning of new people in ministries. - The last month were filled with research work, making it necessary to list findings and display results in graphics for the council to better see God's finger to show us where the unreached people are where He wants us to specially take care for.
It seems missions have to get rid of their passion to control church-planting, but give this job where possible to the nationals to do, but at the same time missions are challenged to leave their cozy save havens more, in order to go to the places where the nationals due to different factors don't have any perspective to start new churches. In this process a word from the International Director of SEND International demonstrates how much alert we have to be for what is happening around us and how God is using even so called failures to advance his gospel.
Greetings from the I.O. Grace and peace (Warren Janzen)
In the Word
I was struck the other day by the last line in 1 Samuel 1. “And he worshipped the LORD there.” Worship is a key theme throughout the chapter. It sets the context for the main events, and like bookends frames the main act of commitment and sacrifice. Hannah’s sacrifice was not done in isolation. It was done in tandem with worship. It made me pause and think of the place worship is playing in my life. Are my conversations done in the context of worship? Does worship frame the beginning and end of my day, my activities? When I’m struggling with decisions or emotions or relationships, is worship being woven into the fabric of those things? Worship reframes reality. Worship centers us back on our all-loving, absolutely able Father in heaven. Worship reminds us that He is working all things together for our good. Therefore “worship the LORD there.” Worship Him right in the middle of whatever you are facing . Worship Him in the sunshine, when things make sense and you can see around you. Worship him in the darkness, where fear rises and confidence fades. Worship Him “there,” wherever that “there” is right now for you.
Off the bookshelf
This month I grabbed a book from the library: Three Cups of Tea. It is the story of Greg Mortenson, an avid climber who, during a failed attempt to climb K2 in Pakistan’s Karakoram Himalaya, stumbled into a remote and impoverished village. During his slow recovery he became aware of the dire need for a school for these children, and promised to return and build one. This promise has turned into a lifetime passion for this man who himself was raised as a Lutheran MK in Africa: to bring education especially for the girls tucked away in this harsh, remote region of the world that has become famous as a breeding ground for the Taliban. I found it very fascinating the way he has successfully negotiated with local Imams to bring education to these villages, yet tragic in the fact that this life-changing experience remains temporal because it is devoid of a relationship with Jesus."
In the office
It is exciting to see the mission prayergroup in Taipei growing. Friends, even if they seem to have a hard time to attend or can not come, would excuse themselves and try to make it another time. - Therefore to have our prayer requests in Chinese on the blog has become a help for them. The Mandarin version of "Intercede and SEND"has more than 40 receivers on our list already, tendency growing. SEND World enters their world and Gods work in SEND is testified in their world of God's work. Pray for many to read the Intercede and SEND prayer-letter and increase God's glory from the nations before his throne.