Thursday, October 31, 2013

Bits Beyond Brazil October

We just unpacked from our last scheduled meeting in which we have a decent distance to travel. On November 17th we are at Calvary Baptist in Red Bank Tennessee all day, but that is really close to home. 

October has been our busiest month for meetings as we started out in North Carolina, went to Alabama and then just arrived from Indiana. We have been so blessed by the sacrificial giving of these churches. I entered 13 new emails from Calvary Baptist and we were overwhelmed by their love and friendliness. 

We are waiting to hear from a couple churches about support, but it looks like we are needing around 700 dollars a month. We are looking for some supporters to raise their support as well as new churches to start supporting (hopefully we will hear about two new ones). We also are looking for new supporters. You know, God has infinite resources and although common sense tells us to worry, I am confident that God will provide for our needs. We have been humbled by gifts from a little girl that had saved money for a doll, a Gideon in a Chik-fil-a, new friends and old that have money or don’t, a seminary couple who does not even buy all the groceries they want, and so many more of you that are faithful. We do not take you all for granted! Click here to give!

Our goal to leave for Brazil is January and we would love to buy tickets this month. Our Outfit and Passage account has been going up, but is still lacking quite a bit, so if you do not think you can do monthly support, pray about a one time gift!

In a couple days I will be running a marathon! Pray for me! And send me your prayer requests as well as I will have about four hours to pray! I have been praying for God to receive glory through this crazy thing I am doing, mainly because it is on my bucket list. (Also look at previous posts for thoughts on the marathon).

This last month in Northeast Brazil, the church from Recife (the capital city) took a group to Arcoverde, the gateway to the Outback, and did an event for children’s day. Partnerships are forming and outreach is happening! We are praying about going to this city for a year or two. 

This month I read the Circle Maker, a great book on prayer that has given me much confidence in the power of prayer. God loves to answer bold prayers. My bold prayers have been for the missions blog, missions real estate idea, our financial support and our family. 

All for HIS glory,
David, Sarah, a happy four year old with many new toys who is learning to share, and a crawling seven month old who loves anything that goes in her mouth and darts for whatever shouldn’t go in her mouth.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Ideas or dreams play out like marathons

Ideas seem to turn out to be marathons. If you are close to me you know that I have a lot of ideas turning circles in my head. Sometimes they pan out to be reality, sometimes not. I seem to dream big though. Going to the mission field started as a big dream when I was in eighth grade and has been playing out into reality in my life. The Christian culture of mediocrity and a big lack of mature disciples always bothered me and so I thought of writing a book. Before we left for Brazil I wrote that book (though few people read it). Fortunately Francis Chan, David Kinnaman, David Platt and others saw the same issues happening and wrote books that have been turning the Christian culture. (To my knowledge, none of them read my book).

Ideas are constantly generated and sometimes I have followed through with them. But they are generally a marathon. They take training or brainstorming, much work, much help and lots of diligence. A marathon is obviously not a quick sprint that our fast-food culture really enjoys. Some of these ideas are not too enjoyable as well.

In July I started a blog called Trends in Biblical Missions as a means of organizing ideas to implement in churches that will improve our mission’s system in our churches. To go along with the missions theme, for the past six years I have had an idea for a fund for these missionaries using real estate that will generate money to offset missions’ costs. These are some of the major marathon ideas I have had that are still in the beginning stages. Running a marathon helps me to realize that the process cannot just happen with the wink of an eye; it takes much time and work, but it can be done.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Marathon and Accountability

I am not running this marathon with anyone I know. I wish I were, but that just did not happen. But accountability has played an important role in training. My sister and dad are running a half marathon in December and some other people I know ran a marathon a couple weeks ago and then some others are running one the week after me. Knowing that has helped me in my training. Just being able to send them a message or text has kept me accountable to my training. My wife also told me; “if you do this, you can’t just do the big runs, you need to get out and run during the week as well.” Without those challenges, it would be very difficult to finish the race.

Sports are not the only places where we need accountability. We also need it in our workplaces, churches and for our spiritual lives. Without people around us, we will not as easily accomplish our goals. I am not saying things cannot get done without it, but it sure makes the process much harder. 

In which area do you need accountability? In the offense of growing spiritually like someone to check on your Bible reading or to pray with you? Or maybe the defense of making sure you stay away from places that cause you to sin or actions that are not pleasing to God? In both ways, accountability can greatly help. 
6 more days until I am a cripple for a few days.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Marathon! Post #1

Legend tells that the marathon was born out of the run of a warrior named Pheidippides, a Greek messenger reporting the result of the Battle of Marathon.  He arrived at the assembly and said “we won” before collapsing and dying. 

When the Olympics were developing in 1896 they wanted a race that would have history with the ancient Greeks (probably in addition to one of the first sports known to man, wrestling). So they developed the idea of the marathon with a length of somewhere around 25 miles. It became pretty popular.

I have always had a marathon on my bucket list, but have only done the River Bank Run in Michigan which is 15.6 miles. I have never put the training on my priority list before. With the River Bank Run I trained a little and did a 10 mile run once before the actual race. After the race I could barely walk for a few days. With the training this time I have done six runs over the 10 mile mark, the highest being 18 miles. Hopefully the race day adrenaline, rested legs and a bit of food and gatorade will get me to the 26.2 mile finish line. 

On the 18 miler I did not eat anything. Pheidippides probably did not eat anything and he fought in the battle before he ran! Sometimes I think I need to man up and go for it! Then I realize that he dropped dead after he ran his. My new life insurance policy has not kicked in yet, so I think that I will eat and drink a little during the race. 

While training I have had plenty of time to think and pray. More on this in the next marathon blog! Countdown to marathon. 8 days.