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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Steve Saint Speaks

We just left the first evening of the Global Missions Health Conference in Louisville, KY, where Steve Saint translated a very inspirational message from Eli Catachunga, a Ticuna tribesman from the Amazon in Brazil.

Eli wearing traditional headdress and markings shared about how in Brazil the missionaries were kicked out of the indigenous lands, because they were ruining the culture. But that God had prepared people within the tribe to become leaders and the Gospel continued to spread without outside missionaries! He kept using the example of Moses being saved and prepared by God, both in Pharaoh's house and then in the wilderness, to be a leader and save his people from Egypt. He also spoke much about the need for the entire body of Christ in all its ethnic and tribal forms to pull together and mix resources to bring the Kingdom.

Some of the things I pulled away from this first Plenary are:
  • The Gospel doesn't destroy our culture (or any culture) but purifies it and is the solution to our culture's deficiencies.
  • Why aren't we teaching others what God has taught us?
  • God prepares us to give to others
  • One should help another (we are all equals, in the Body there is no one who is better or worse)
  • Every tribe (people group) needs a Moses. This is a project that he is currently working on in Brazil
  • We can't get too comfortable with the blessings that we have been given. Otherwise there will be consequences.
This last point segways well into the breakout session I attended earlier in the day. The title was My Life: A Designated Donation? The main thrust was that we often put stipulations into our willingness to serve God, like a donor may stipulate where money should go within an organization. She was saying that like an organization's leadership knows where money is needed (which may differ from a donor's interest, ie. toilet paper or other "non-sexy" needs), God knows where His people are needed. We should be willing to commit our life to Him and then be willing to follow Him wherever He may lead us.

Those are just some thoughts from the first afternoon of the conference. We are here because 1) my wife is an RN, and 2) because we are interested in working overseas.

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