A few months ago, I started sensing that God was saying something to me. I felt He was telling me to plan a visit to each of PCC's international mission partners. In case you don't know, PCC supports ministries in Belize, Moldova and Tanzania. In addition, God has led us to two local ministries helping people in our local community, too. (I'll talk more about that in a later post)
To be completely transparent, I pushed back on God at first. I had no idea where Moldova was and I didn't really want to go there. I was slightly more open to going to Tanzania, but not much. (I've been on mission with our team to Belize before, and I know some of the folks down there, and I was already excited about going.)
What I felt God saying to me was this: 'Brian, I have entrusted you with leadership in My church. You are a steward of the investment of Kingdom resources (people, money, time and expertise) in these places. I want you to go to them, encourage the people there, learn more about how I'm working there and about the need. I want your heart to be broken like Mine is for these places and these people, and I want to show you how you can do more and help others get excited about how I am touching and changing lives around the world.'
So, over time, I prayed sentiments like this: "God, I serve You. I don't want to go, but it's not about what I want. It's about what You want me to do. I'll do anything you say, whether I want to or not."
When you pray prayers like that (yes, this applies to you, not just me), you'll likely find yourself having more than just a grudgingly obedient heart, like "Ok, God, I'll go. But you can't make me like it!" Instead, you'll find that God often actually changes your heart, so that the thing you didn't want to do often becomes the thing you actually look forward to!
That's what happened to me, and I began to anticipate that God was about to do something dramatic in me, through me, and through our church.
So, in the next 18 months, I will visit all of our mission partners in these three countries. My adventure to the first stop began yesterday, with a long and tiring travel day from Richmond to Atlanta to Frankfurt and, finally, to Chisinau, Moldova.
I know you're dying to know what ministry we support here. And I'll have more to say about that in my next post.
Oh, and thanks for praying for me while I'm gone. I'll be back at our church on April 21. And in case you are wondering, Sunday April 14 is going to be a fantastic day at PCC, so don't play hookey! :-)