Thirty years ago this summer I went on a mission’s trip with New Tribes Mission. At the time, I’m not sure if I really understood WHY I was going to spend a summer in Liberia, W. Africa but I understand now. WHY would I want to continue this journey that God started me on 3 decades ago? There are many people groups who live in darkness that need their lives transformed through the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In Acts 13, Paul quoted Isaiah, “… I have made you a light… to bring salvation to the farthest corners of the earth.”
HOW do you bring the Light of the Gospel to people who have only known darkness? A lot of time goes into preparing for such a monumental task. How do you relate with people who are so different than you and you have nothing in common? Pre-field Training is imperative.
WHAT have I been doing to bring “so great a salvation” to those who haven’t heard? After I finished NTM’s 4 year training program I went to Panama, Central America. During those 10 years I had the privilege of ministering alongside some amazing people, planting mature churches that glorify Christ. For the past 13 years I’ve been ministering at New Tribes Mission Training Center in Missouri where we train future missionaries to take the Light of the Gospel into very dark territory; preparing them to relate with people with whom they have nothing in common.
My ministry is one of discipleship in and outside of the classroom. As a staff, we, strive to do life on life with the students, modeling what they’ll need to do on the field in order to plant a mature church. I’m part of a team of instructors that teach various aspects of Culture and Language Acquisition: Phonetics, Culture Introduction, Grammar relating to languages other than English, Culture and Language Acquisition Theory and Methodology and the Culture and Language Acquisition Practicum.
Outside of the classroom, I disciple a group of student women, as well as several one-on-one. I also work with a group of students who have an outreach ministry in the local Hispanic church.
The ultimate reason for WHY I do what I do is: The Lord says to “Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples (Psm. 96.3 NKJV).
Recently a group of former students went to live with the Pal, in Papua New Guinea. They learned the culture and language, learned how to relate to them in a way that was meaningful to the people. The missionary team DECLARED GOD’S GLORY AND HIS WONDERS and a church was born. That is why I do what I do.
This journey that God started me on 30 years ago only gets sweeter as former students, now my co-laborers in Christ, are “a light… to bring salvation to the farthest corners of the earth.”