Happy Friday! If your read my post and watched my video from last week, you may be wondering how things are shaping up with our funding benchmark deadline tomorrow. Well, I don’t have final totals for this week yet, but thank you SO much to everyone who has given toward our launch fund for moving to serve alongside Andy and Isobel Hodson in the UK. And with one day left, we are super grateful for a friend who has offered a “matching challenge” – kind of like they do on the K-LOVE pledge drives from time to time. 🙂 For every financial gift given by tomorrow night (3/8), our friend has offered to match it up to $1000. Will you please prayerfully consider helping us reach that goal? Thank you! Here is our giving link. 🙂
On any post related to our “missions” work, since I have lots of friends and readers, who I love, who might not consider yourselves followers of Jesus, I always like to link back to this post I wrote a while back, because I know “missions” can be an often misunderstood word. It’s not about coercing or forcing anyone to believe anything, but simply living out life in light of the Great Love we’ve been shown, loving others sacrificially, including enemies, and even unto the point of death (which can be a daily spiritual death to “self” – not the healthy kind of self love that is required to “love our neighbors as ourselves” but the unhealthy “self” in each of us – or a physical death).
A family friend recently wrote saying she’s trying to understand what motivates us, and quite simply it’s God’s love. I may write more on this next week, but Jesus said, “Love one another, as I have loved you.” Can you imagine what the world would be like if everyone actually followed that? If everyone was willing to love each other to the point of death, not retaliating for wrongs, and showing extreme forgiveness, because everyone realized that we all need love and forgiveness and there is no quantification of “sin” (another often very misunderstood word – simply, everything that is not on target with what God intends for the world, and with which everyone struggles in some way or another)? If everyone truly loved and forgave extremely because they understood and fully grasped how extremely God loves and forgives them? Can you imagine?
Without love, we are “noisy gongs and clanging cymbals.” That quote, in its biblical context, isn’t talking about gongs and cymbals playing their carefully placed and important roles in a beautiful symphony. It’s talking about ones that are sticking out and effectively annoying, distracting, and dividing… people who probably don’t really understand yet the full power of Jesus’ good news of love and forgiveness, but maybe still think that their forgiveness in Christ somehow makes them better than other people.
But with true love, forgiveness, and humility, the power of God is changing the world one heart at a time. I think I probably will try to write about this more next week for my ‘Faith Fridays’ post, but for now, suffice it to say, wherever we are in the world in every present moment, Fred and I hope and pray that our lives point people to that truth – that God is actively restoring all creation, with an intimate and supernatural love, one human heart at a time.