A Word From Our National Missions Director

July 1st, 2009

Good morning!

Globalization is a common buzz word in many circles today. This not a new topic or idea; Paul engages the idea in 2 Corinthians chapter 8. He writes with enthusiasm to those in Corinth, telling them how much he wanted them to get to know the church in Macedonia, and especially the “the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches.” (2 Cor. 8:1). He then emphasizes two characteristics of these brethren in a different part of the world:

  •        Although undergoing severe trials, they were joyful
  •        Even in the midst of extreme poverty, they were generous

Talk about radical, and counter-cultural! I can have a hard time being joyful when my life is without a trial. Even in the midst of abundance it’s not easy to be generous… What a truly wonderful work of the grace of God in those churches!

In my recent travels, I’ve had the privilege of seeing youth from Chinese churches rejoice in midst of difficulties. In Papua New Guinea, a nation with much poverty, I heard our leaders discussing ways to better care for their six missionaries sent to other island-nations of the Pacific. I’m excited about the grace of God in the small Foursquare work in the Kaxinawa tribe in western Amazon, who, only months after the arrival of Brazilian Foursquare missionaries to their tribe, prepared to send a Kaxinawa missionary to reach their cousin tribe in Bolivia with the gospel.

You and I are privileged to be a part of an amazing global Foursquare tapestry, being woven by works of God’s grace, of so many forms, shapes, colors and styles. I also get VERY excited about the Kaxinawa, or PNG, or Chinese brethren getting to meet you, and discovering the rich deposit and work of His grace that is in you, your family, and church. After years living outside the U.S., I am so grateful for this season, serving in your midst again. And recently at Connection ‘09, it was all about being enriched by His grace in each other as we connected as a family.

Thank you so much for sharing His grace in you around the world by praying, giving and going. We celebrate that! May His grace be abundant in my heart and yours this week, causing there to be joy and generosity (regardless of circumstance), just as in those days, in Macedonia! 

 

In His service,

 Jonathan Hall
Director, Foursquare Missions International

 

As you pray this week, remember the nearly 50 Ignite students, team leaders and Life Pacific College participants who have been ministering in different regions of the world and will return home soon.

The Heart of Worship

July 1st, 2009

Oil and water, black and white, night and day.  These are all well known expressions to convey the thought of opposites that don’t go together.  Here, I want us to look at opposites as related to the heart of worship.

The church at Laodicea in Revelation Chapter 3, was a church wrapped up in materialism.  Their earthly labors had not been in vain; they were a church of wealth, abundance and easy living.  I have no doubt that their church was the biggest and had all the best things that money could supply.  I am sure that each member of the congregation thought they had it all together.  That their worship—with the best musicians, equipment, talent, and angelic sound—was totally pleasing to God and lacked nothing.   But the Lord Jesus rebuked their smug self-reliance, saying they were blind, naked, and ready to be vomited out of His mouth because of their lukewarm hearts (i.e., worship).

Now contrast the self-reliance of Laodicea with Moses in Exodus Chapter 33.  Here the Holy Spirit gives us a clear look into the heart of a true worshipper.   

Think of how much Moses has been in the mighty presence of God. The burning bush, the miracles in Egypt, the 10 Commandments, the Tent of Meeting, speaking with God as face to face, etc.  Yet all of this isn’t enough—he desires more! 

He hungers for more of God, his thirsting after God is unquenchable.  No matter how much Moses has experienced God’s glorious presence in his life, he is still desperate for even more

That is the heart of a worshipper.   That is the heart of one who will be called “God’s friend.”