With the big picture in hand, God sent me out to answer the second key question: What was he already doing?
“Why do we need another American missionary in Oxford?”
This charming question was put to me during one of my first meetings in Oxford with a local ministry leader. We were sitting in his office, lounging on old leather recliners, sipping tea while enjoying the view of Oxford’s prestigious Christ Church College from his window.
I wish I could say I answered him with words of thoughtful wisdom or a thought-provoking question. But I was so rattled and taken aback that I launched into a long description of the many ways in which God had previously used us in London, followed by an equally verbose apologetic for our Oxford presence. He was not impressed, to say the least.
Listen as Danny shares his story of discovering God's vision...
My birthday, May 23, 2002 was happily spent traveling along with a group of leaders through the northwest of Cambodia, to a region the Lord had never given me permission to travel to before. We were visiting pastors and their churches, praying for them as they served Jesus out on the fringes of the Kingdom. We asked the Lord to send laborers to extend his church.
Fast-forward more than a dozen years. God had moved me into more focused prayer efforts, riding my dirt bike around the whole circumference of Cambodia (5,000 km) twice each year. We called these expeditions “Prayer Circles.” I had made many more trips into that isolated northwest province and spent a lot of time praying there.
"How do these gospel movements which we long for and see happening in many places, begin? They often begin with one person, or one family."
While it can be challenging to see God at work, Mariah Nix (InnerCHANGE L.A.) can see places God is on the move, giving her vision and hope to keep praying and keep serving. Listen as she shares the story of her context, the gospel movement they see emerging, and the steps their team is taking to sow into that movement.
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One of my favorite verses is John 17:3, “Now this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” This verse speaks to the deepest part of my heart because I long to experience all that Jesus has for me and is to me, not only after I go to heaven, but also here and now on earth. This is the heart of the gospel: to know God and his Son Jesus Christ in an intimate way that transforms us from the inside out, conforming us to the image of Christ for the benefit of others.
In order for this transformation to happen, I believe we need to recognize that God wants to be an intimate part of every aspect of our lives—in every relationship, at work, when we play sports, and in all we say and do.
No Little People, No Little Places: Letting God Move Through You
I met Becca* in a small congregation. She was a homeschooling mother with a desire to be involved in God’s purposes in the world, but wasn’t sure what that could look like for her.
I challenged Becca to get involved with reaching our city with the good news of Jesus, and encouraged her that relationships she already had could be the foundation of a Disciple Making Movement—a mighty move of God.
Becca agreed to let me train her in basic Disciple Making Movement strategies. She caught a vision for how this simple Bible-focused, relationship-driven approach to evangelism might really work. She started to see some of her current relationships through different eyes.
The Path of Grace: Walking Toward Forgiveness and Healing
I recently spent two rainy and beautiful days at a retreat with 25 young women between 17 and 24 years old. I felt so honored to be invited to join this retreat to share about inner healing. It’s one of my favorite ministry and teaching topics!
As I entered the room the first morning it struck me just how young these girls were. I had been praying and remembering what being in my twenties was like. (Not so long ago, by the way! At least in my mind.)
When our central African leaders arrived at the location where they had been asked to take seven evangelists through a Disciple Making Movement (DMM) training, they were in for a surprise. The house they had been directed to was filled with men and women on pallets on the floor who were sick and dying—38 of them.
Celebrating Gospel Movement: An Unexpected Decision in Western Europe
One of our newest German network leaders, Jonas*, asked me to visit Erik*, his friend and business associate. I presumed Jonas wanted me to help Erik consider his life calling or a ministry project he wanted to develop.
As I picked Erik up from his office for dinner I asked him why it was he was sitting in the car with me, a complete stranger.
Operation Outhouse and Beyond: Breaking the Cycle of Poverty for the Roma (Gypsy) Community
A young business leader named Zsolt had an encounter with God. Up until that point Zsolt had been living the dream—big fancy house and international travel. But after Zsolt met Jesus he felt called to give up his business, sell his home and two cars, and go under the tutelage of a pastor in an isolated and largely unreached part of Romania. He moved his family into a three-room communist era apartment and started serving under this pastor. We were surprised when two years later the pastor, who was going blind, handed his church over to Zsolt. CRM staff, Brad Baker, admits, “We didn’t see what the pastor saw in Zsolt, but God did.”