November 6 2013
Ukraine Summer Camp Report
“Before camp, I could believe in God, now I can trust in him.” It is comments like this that really make camp, or indeed any mission trip, either short- or long-term, worthwhile. There is nothing greater than seeing a soul come to know the Lord and deciding to follow him in their daily lives.
Before a student can get to this point, those initial barriers between God and themselves must be broken down. Some of these barriers usually come in the form of unanswered questions, which the students are eager to have answered before they make a decision to follow Christ. However, before they can get the answers they desire, they need to build up a sense of trust with their teachers (English speaking short termers). One way in which this is carried out is by giving the students the opportunity to take part in a range of different activities, both indoor and outdoor, which encourages interaction between students and teachers. The activities also give them the chance to improve their language skills, which is one of the main goals of camp. As a direct result, the students will then begin to open up, which is vital if we as teachers are to fulfill our ultimate goal, which is to make the students think about the true meaning of life and to expose them to the reality of the Gospel.
To demonstrate the power of God’s saving grace at camp, I want to tell you the story of one student who came to camp this year. The quote at the beginning is taken from an interview with her post-camp. Similar to most of the students, Stasy (pictured on left in photo) came from a Ukrainian Orthodox family where God is primarily viewed as a mystical being, who is beyond human comprehension and any type of personal relationship. As Christians, we know that it is sometimes hard to comprehend who God is, but we know that it is possible to have a personal relationship with him. Throughout camp, Stasy found it really hard to open up and trust others, let alone God. However, with the unique family atmosphere and the loving atmosphere that existed at camp, which we can only ascribe to God himself, by the end of the 10 days these barriers had been broken down and Stasy had opened her heart to others, and more importantly to God. The transformation was so evident in her life, and the desire to walk with God and to read his Word was so real.
This story is only one of many that demonstrate how God is clearly moving throughout this city of Kiev and the country of Ukraine. It is because of stories like this that many of us keep returning to Ukraine and continue to serve God in our local context as we know that he has the power to change lives. It is my desire that others might experience this feeling and want to serve him.
--David Cathcart, OMS UK short-term missionary to Ukraine, summer 2013
Is God calling you to be a worker, either on the front lines or in a support role? View all of the opportunities how God may use you to be a missionary. You can even register to serve in Ukraine next summer for an English camp. Contact Brent Morrell at 317.888.3333, ext. 391 or email@example.com for more information.
November 1 2013
One Mission Stories "After the Show" -- Joel Silverman
We hope you enjoyed Sunday night's (Nov. 3) One Mission Stories, OMS' radio program, featuring One Mission Society missionary Joel Silverman, serving as the executive director of OMS USA.
Here are our "After the Show" resources to better connect you with things you heard about on the program last night.
Joel, a former businessman and director of the BMV in Indiana under Gov. Mitch Daniels, shared about his experiences as a shepherd or mentor to the people of Myanmar through our Every Community for Christ ministry, about being raised in a Jewish home, and about his role and ministry today as the U.S. executive director for OMS.
If you are interested in serving, either short- or long-term, with OMS, check out the opportunities.
If you would like to give a gift to any OMS ministries, you can do so online. Just type the ministry name and amount you'd like to give.
If you would like to know more about any of our ministries around the world, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect at www.onemissionsociety.org/radio.
Please tune in to next week's One Mission Stories to hear the testimonies of several University of Indianapolis nursing students and staff who recently participated in a short-term medical missions trip to Ecuador.
If you missed this program or any of our previous programs, you can listen to it at www.onemissionsociety.org/radio, or click on the subscribe link to subscribe to our iTunes podcast so you're sure not to miss any of the future shows! You can also listen live on Freedom 95 at 95.9 FM or 950 AM or live streaming at www.freedom95.us. Our programs are every Sunday night from 7-8 p.m.
November 1 2013
Exploring God's Call to Missions
Scrolling through One Mission Society’s Facebook wall, I find myself in awe of how God uses normal ordinary people to complete his extraordinary command to make disciples of all nations. For the past 112 years, folks have journeyed to other lands to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with people just like you and me, human souls. Though languages, skin color, customs, and mores may be different, the truth is people are people “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14, ESV). We are born, we live, and we die no matter where we live or what nation we call home.
So what is it that motivates people to leave their own home and go to live in another culture for a few weeks, a few years, or even until they enter eternity? The specific answers are as different as the people themselves, but there seems to be a common denominator for those who go. What is it? It is a call, but only you can determine what that is for you. Since 1901, One Mission Society has come alongside thousands of ordinary people who have found that one thing that stirs them to respond to the call to help fulfill the Great Commission.
Although, OMS has sent thousands of missionaries, the organization believes the first call for any person is to the Lord himself, not to an organization or to a country. Over the next few days, the Mobilization Department is hosting an event, One Weekend, with the intent to help folks explore questions about the call to missions, or how does one fit into missions. Even though OMS is hosting this event, it is not a 3-day advertisement for One Mission Society. Rather, it is a retreat from the day-to-day distractions so that interested people have an opportunity to hear the Lord speak into their hearts.
This weekend is already booked up, but there will be another One Weekend event coming soon. If you are interested in missions or curious about “the call,” mark your calendars for March 7-9, 2014! The event fills up fast, and March will be here before we know it. Contact Paul Cox at email@example.com to get your name on the list.
I’ve been through One Weekend, and you will not regret attending, but you may regret missing the opportunity. You may be one of the ordinary people God has chosen for an extraordinary task in his plans to fulfill the Great Commission. Watch for reports from this weekend’s event because I am sure there will be stories to tell you!
―Beth Jordal, OMS missionary, serving in Communications
“Some want to live within the sound of church or chapel bell; I want to run a rescue shop, within a yard of hell.” ― C.T. Studd
View all of the opportunities how God may use you to be a missionary. Is God calling you to be a worker, either on the front lines or in a support role?
September 20 2013
There's Just Something About That Name
As I left customs, a young man offered to take my two suitcases, which I was handling just fine. However, I asked him his name, and he said, “Christian!” I told him the meaning and asked if he would like to be like Jesus! "Si, you gave my father, Mario, a Bible once! God transformed him from being an alcoholic." Right there, we prayed together, and Christian began his new life in Jesus.
My ride pulled up, and I loaded the car, but then I noticed two traffic officers. I greeted them and asked the first one his name. "Javier," he responded with a smile. "Your name means "a new house.” Wouldn't you like a new house in heaven?" I asked.
"Not now," he laughed. I continued, "But wouldn't you like to reserve a new house in heaven right now?" He answered, "Certainly, how do I do that?" … Another precious soul came into the kingdom. His partner was not to be left out. "Arturo? That was my father's name too!" It means "noble hero," I said. Arturo, a seeking heart, asked Jesus to be Savior, Lord, and King of his life." What joy! There is nothing like it.
And one final story about a trip I took into Bellavista, a large prison in Medellin, Colombia, once one of the most violent prisons in the world. I went to find Jeobany. Several of the staff had tried with no luck. A month had gone by since his capture. I found Christian (different from the one mentioned above), a young fellow I had previously led to the Lord, and we went in search of Jeobany, but we had no luck. I waited in the patio as he untiringly called out his name in all the wings. The brothers from the chapel came, and I gave them the things I had for him. I told them Jeobany's story, (he was caught driving a stolen car). They assured me they would take care of him. I left without seeing him. But during my hour and a half waiting in the patio, I saw 31 men accept Jesus as their Savior, including two prison guards. Each received a New Testament.
Friday, I went back in search of Jeobany. After searching and searching, I felt a hand on my shoulder. An unshaved, wooly Jeobany hugged me. It drew attention in the wing, and I soon was surrounded by inmates. I asked several what their real names were, then told them the meaning. Then, everyone wanted to know his own name's meaning. This is a great way of connecting. They all burst into laughter when I told one fellow, Santiago, what his name meant … engaño, to cheat, deceive. That is how they all got into prison! With a good group of men around me, I shared the Good News and invited them to accept Jesus! A male chorus belted out the sinner's prayer. A priceless moment. Each received a new NT. Then, I told Santiago, "The Truth, now lives in you. You no longer need to live up to your name as you have in the past." I prayed for them, knowing the hardships all of them are going through. The prison is terribly crowded. Jeobany slept in the bathroom his first night. The stairways are packed with bodies at night with no room to walk. Bellavista has almost five times more prisoners than it should…over 7,000, and it was built to house 1,500 men.
"Before the Christians redeemed this place with Jesus' blood, the prisoners chopped up dead bodies and put them into garbage bags. Today, men come out of here transformed to serve the Living God," I told them.
Then, a number of brothers in the Lord surrounded Jeobany. I asked him if he wanted to come back to Jesus. Humbly, Jeobany asked Jesus to forgive him and to do a new work in him. I prayed for him, then, we hugged. A different look shone in his eyes. Thank you, Jesus, I prayed inwardly, continue the work you began in him when he first asked you into to his life as an eight-year-old in my father's old workshop on the seminary campus. "Jeobany, this is now your family in prison. My brothers want to help you. Seek them out." I left with a full heart, rejoicing in the Spirit's work - a lost sheep was found.
--Jeannine Brabon, OMS missionary, serving in Colombia
Do you want to make a difference in the life of someone. One Mission Society has many opportunities to serve the Lord!
September 17 2013
Human Trafficking Prevention Starts By Entering Others’ Stories
Today in Thailand there is a teenage boy who is one step away from entering the sex industry. Right now in the Philippines, there is a woman who is one choice away from being prostituted. They may be sitting on the street, begging for change, driven to desperation but hanging on by one last thread. If we saw them, if we knew they were just one choice away, would we be able to prevent it?
Many of us choose to avert our eyes when we see someone helpless or begging on the streets. Because something happens when we look. When we make eye contact with someone, we experience a connection. Looking (really looking) at the person in need causes us to enter into their situation. It forces us to feel something for them. It compels us to act because we become part of their story.
I wrote a newsletter a year ago talking about the Zulu tribe of South Africa. They understand this concept of seeing people. In their native greetings, they say “Sawubona,“ meaning “I see you,” and the other person responds “Ngihkona,” literally, “I am here to be seen.”
The inherent meaning in the Zulu response is “by recognizing me, you brought me into existence.” When they see a person and greet them, they are looking deep into them and acknowledging their humanity, their personality, their dignity.
Everyone has a story. In Acts 3, Peter and John encountered a beggar and chose to enter his situation. Verse 4 says, “Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then, Peter said, ‘Look at us!’” They saw him. Not only that, they made sure the man saw them also. They entered his story, and invited him to enter theirs. In that moment, the kingdom of heaven invaded earth. A man who couldn’t take a step could now leap and run!
He’d expected to receive silver and gold. But he received something more priceless than that. He was seen, he was healed, and because he looked at Peter and John, he entered the Story of Jesus.
We can’t prevent people from being trafficked and exploited unless we are willing to enter into their stories. We can’t bring physical and spiritual healing unless we are willing to enter into their stories. And we aren’t really setting them free unless we also invite them to enter into the greatest Story of all.
--Bethany Ury, OMS missionary, funding to serve with HOPE61 in Thailand
We are currently looking for more people to expand this ministry overseas. If you or someone you know may be interested in this ministry, contact Brent in our Mobilization Department at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
April 29 2013
More Than a House
After taking care of the team at the Villa and helping build a house for the OMS Homes for Haiti project with the team each day, Sarah was determined to stay home on Thursday. She just needed to finish up some tasks around the Villa and could really use some R&R.
No one else talked about staying back, so she reluctantly decided she needed to go to the worksite. Sarah and the rest of the women worked alongside the men for the morning but felt less than productive.
Evangelism. That is what came to Sarah’s mind as she thought about the afternoon. The women took off and started sharing the Gospel message with those who would listen.
Savannah, another woman in the group, jumped at the first person they encountered. He accepted Christ!
The next area they went to had eight Haitian women and six or so children. Although they were warned that these Haitian women had ties to voodoo, the courage of the Holy Spirit came through.
After a brief explanation and discussion of the Gospel message, these women were asked if any of them wanted to accept Christ as their Savior. They all did.
Later, these Haitian women were asked why they covered their faces as they prayed to accept Jesus. They responded that they felt unworthy to receive this blessing from God.
Nine adults heard the Gospel, and nine accepted Christ. Not a bad day of evangelism!
Although the day started for Sarah as a day that she didn’t want to help build one more house, God had different plans for her. The day turned out to be more than building a house in Haiti – a mansion is being built for these nine Haitians, along with the others that accepted Christ that day.
Is God calling you to help build a house in Haiti for those who lost everything during the earthquake a few years ago? Contact Bill Evans to see how you can participate on a short-term team. Or, maybe God is asking you to write a check to help pay for another home to be built? Start down a path to help build a house as Sarah did, and see what journey God has in store for you.
March 25 2013
So Be It...
Living the American Christian dream, Danny and Julie Beasley thought they were living fully for the Lord. Danny served the Lord in full-time ministry at a church, and Julie worked as a Certified Public Accountant, mentoring young women, as time allowed.
Julie typically choose to work in small accounting firms that allowed her flexible working hours, enabling her to schedule ministry opportunities during the day. But when Danny received a promotion with UPS, the Beasleys moved to St. Louis, and Julie accepted a position at a larger accounting firm.
This larger firm meant more pay, but it also meant more responsibility and more hours. Slowly, the time devoted to mentoring young women and other ministry eroded, and life was becoming more and more unfulfilling for Julie.
With an increasing desire to work less and serve more, Julie’s prayer became, “Call me or leave me alone, God!” While praying through and studying John Wesley’s Covenant Prayer, the phrase “so be it” kept playing in Julie’s head.
This phrase culminated at their church’s revival service in the coming weeks. Julie, needing to turn everything over to God, took her CPA license and laid it on the altar. She prayed that God would make His call clear in her life, and she was willing to be obedient no matter what the result.
Several months later, Julie joined coworkers for a day of service at a park in a crime-ridden area of the city. Julie went, hoping to find people in the neighborhood to tell about Jesus.
She ran into a gap-toothed man named Isaiah. When she realized he was a Christian, they talked about the ministries in this area of the city. Before long, Isaiah nervously said he thought he had a Word from the Lord for her. He said that the Lord knew the desires of her heart―that He has heard her prayers and that He would answer them. Julie knew her answer was to come soon.
That weekend was their church’s mission conference. During the Sunday morning service, M.L. Hillard spoke, and Julie felt like her heart was being ripped out. After the service, Danny went to a Sunday school class and heard One Mission Society missionary Warren Hardig speak about missions in Haiti.
Right in the middle of Warren’s talk, not really fitting in with what was being said, Warren said, “OMS really needs accountants on the field." After Danny told Julie this, she was hooked.
Danny, on the other hand, was not. Danny did not have the same peace as Julie, but he was willing to follow her where God was calling her. He went to bed asking God for the same peace that Julie showed.
The next morning, Danny opened his daily devotional to a study on Exodus. The selected passage said “So now go, I am sending you …” Danny felt his call confirmed.
Danny and Julie Beasley soon leave for language school in Costa Rica before heading to Ecuador to serve in full-time ministry with OMS.
Are you tired of living the American version of the Christian life? Are you ready for a new challenge in your life? Are you ready to use the gifts that God has given you to further the work of God’s kingdom? Contact the Mobilization Team at OMS to learn how you can have a story that ends up similar to Danny and Julie’s.
March 4 2013
Is God Calling You To Be a Missionary?
Luke 10:2 is a well-worn passage of Scripture we live and breathe daily at One Mission Society. Jesus’ instruction to his disciples before launching them out was,
The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send more workers into his fields.
Did you know that in the original language, the word ask means to beg or plead? And the phrase to send out is the same original language Jesus used when he sent out the money changers from the temple in Matthew 21:12 and when he cast out a demon from a man in Luke 11:14. In both cases, the casting out was done against their wills.
So, how is Jesus asking us to pray according to Luke 10:2?
If you look at the original language in the New Testament, Jesus is saying, “Beg me to kick out Christians into the mission field. And if they’re wavering or hesitant, ask me to kick them out even if it means against their will. There’s plenty of work to be done.”
We pray that prayer earnestly each and every day as we mobilize others to take the Gospel to all parts of the world. Keep in mind that we’re not asking OMS or the Mobilization department at our world headquarters to kick out Christians. We’re asking The Lord of the Harvests to do that!
Is God calling you to be a missionary? Is He kicking you into the mission field? Is He calling you to go, give, or pray for the harvest?
Check out OMS’ opportunities to serve, or contact mobilization to request information about how you can get involved.