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Stories, practical resources & thought-provoking articles to help mobilize God's people in Canada to be fruitfully engaged with God, on mission.

 

Lessons from the Church in the East


Over these past two years my ministry context has allowed me to experience the impact of the pandemic on the church in the East and the church in the West.

The impact of Covid is global, but I have had the opportunity to interact with the church in a variety of different situations and contexts and observe the difference of response.

What drives the difference?

How can we learn from our brothers and sisters in the East as they responded to the same or even greater challenges than us?

Would it help to prepare us for the future?

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8 Principles for Making Disciples


A few years ago, I spent several months reading and re-reading the book of Acts. I was trying to understand how the Church had gone from a handful of people hiding out for fear of the authorities, to a bold and fearless community growing at an exponential rate.

As I read, a pattern began to emerge:

Prayer preceded Holy Spirit empowerment, which led to bold, public witness about Jesus Christ, accompanied by affirming signs and wonders,

resulting in many coming to faith AND active opposition from others,

which then caused Jesus’ followers to go back to prayer … starting the cycle all over again.

Here are 8 disciple-making principles that have become crystal clear to me from the Acts accounts ...

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She Will Be Remembered Forever


I love the story from Matthew 26, in which a nameless woman smashed open a priceless alabaster jar of perfume and poured it out on Jesus. She gave up what was probably her most valuable possession (the cultural importance of this burial perfume is something we won't get into here) and broke it open for Jesus. That action forced her to use it on the spot, and the loss of the perfume was irreversible ...

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Remembering Soldiers

 

As your name deserves, O God, you will be praised to the ends of the earth. Your strong right hand is filled with victory. (Psalm 48:10)

Let’s take a moment to remember. 

In my city there are hundreds of little wooden crosses placed downtown along the river each year in November representing local women and men who went and died fighting in numerous wars.

Today, I’m remembering soldiers of the cross who, in obedience to God’s call, went to the ends of the earth bringing good news of Jesus; God’s strong right hand is consequently filled with victory in many nations of the world.


Why Pray?

I was recently in a conversation with someone who had been asked, ‘Why do you pray since God already knows everything.’ They were a bit stymied how to answer even though they had a healthy practice of prayer and knew that it was important.

As we chatted and I unpacked some of my understanding of why prayer needs to be a priority for ALL Christians, I realized that my thinking in this has grown a lot over the years!

Here’s some of what I understand about prayer ... 


A Hidden Jewel: The Discipline of Corporate Prayer for the Nations

About a decade back I encountered a significant health journey. God used it, over the course of more than 18 months, to do a major overhaul in my relationship with Him.

And as the crisis of it all began to wind down, I wondered what I could do to keep walking in such intimacy with Him. 

Right about then, God handed me one of the answers, although I didn’t know it at the time ...


Prayer Walking: Learning to Walk

Just before my granddaughter turned two, she learned how to walk.

Most of us learn to walk around that age, and when you are that young, learning to walk is the development of a brand-new skill that opens whole new worlds to be discovered and enjoyed. We tend to lose that joy as we get older. 

The same dynamic is at work in our prayer lives. As new Christians, we discover the wonder and joy of talking to God, but somehow as the years pass the joy of prayer and the wonder of prayer somehow seem to get misplaced. Just like walking, prayer somehow tends to drift into a mundane activity. It becomes just a way to get somewhere in life, and a way that at times, we are even reluctant to take.

Prayer-walking is something we can all do ... it can be a powerful tool for discipleship, a pre-cursor of evangelism and even a prophetic act. Prayer-walking has as many forms and expressions as walking does, but the easiest and most common form is exactly what is sounds like: prayer, while we walk.

In this article, Marcus shares practical & helpful steps to incorporate prayer-walking into your everyday life...


Prayer DOES Make a Difference

The sheer number of people who have never had the opportunity to hear the gospel overwhelmed me. 40% of the world's population! 

What could I do that would make a dent in this? I might not be able to go, but I could pray...


Praying for Unreached People Groups

The story of a church who developed a vision for all nations, through prayer for unreached people groups!


Do My Prayers Matter?

I suppose in my heart, I’ve had to wrestle with whether my small prayers can make a difference ‘over there.’

I think of the unnamed woman behind the hijab or sari. She loves her family and seeks the best for them, yet she has never heard that God loves her so much that he sent his son, Jesus, to die for her shame and give her hope.

I think of the grandma who suffers grief when her children and grandchildren don’t have food, clothing, a warm (or cool) place to sleep. She is someone who can’t cast all her cares on the God who loves her because she still doesn’t know His name. She is powerless to lift herself from poverty and knows no Jesus-followers to show her the power of prayer.

Can my prayers help?