Celebrating is a good thing. We can celebrate accomplishment, anniversaries, and many other significant things. And 2018 has been a year for celebrating. But what we celebrate wouldn’t be possible without you because you helped make it happen. So let’s take a quick look back. It’s not an attempt to live in the past. That’s never good. But recognizing what God has already accomplished gives us great hope to look forward in faith and great expectation. That’s my goal. Here we go…
Celebrating The Work
Many of us joined hands and worked hard during 2018. A short list of things to celebrate would include:
- Another graduating class of pastors
- Class attendance at an all-time high
- Hundreds coming to faith
- Hundreds of people receiving medical care
- New churches engaged in our ministry
- New tools under development
- Orphans cared for – life change is in progress
There are ‘stories’ attached to every item above. And every story is about people whose lives have been touched. And all of it happened because you prayed, supplied, supported, promoted, and gave. It’s good to say Thank You and it’s good to celebrate. But the best perspective was provided by the Apostle Paul in Philippians 3:12-14 –
Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Kingdom work is not over until the King returns. So, we celebrate yesterday and reach for tomorrow. And it helps us to have an idea what we are reaching for.
Many good things happened in 2018. But we don’t have to see what 2019 holds in order to celebrate. Why? Because the God we serve doesn’t change when the calendar does. He is still the One Who can do exceedingly and abundantly more than we can ask or imagine (see Ephesians 3:20-21).
I also know something else. 2019 is going to be a year of change. By definition, growing means changing. And growth is the goal for a new year. There are new ministry opportunities. And each of those opportunities requires prayer, volunteers, supply, and support. And the awesome team that helped meet the opportunities of 2018 also needs to grow. That’s just logical if increased opportunities are going to become reality.
A big piece of the plan to grow is our new website. Before I go further, let me say I never dreamed the conversion and remake of a website could take this much time and effort. If I’d had an idea, I would have waited until it was nearly finished to say anything about it. Instead, I just blabbed it out as we started the work because I didn’t think it would take more than a few weeks. So, I’m sorry for the amount of time it has taken. But the turn-on time is imminent. I’m excited. And there will be several posts and emails in order to help acquaint readers and supporters with all the ins-and-outs of using a newly developed resource.
Celebrating In Action
The best way to help people engage in anything is to provide some practical ways they can help. In short: give them a to-do list! And I’ve got one for you.
Prayer is vital. Please make a plan to pray for this ministry daily. I am sure I don’t know all the people who do that. But I do know the ones that contact me from time to time. They let me know they are praying, tell me what they are praying for, and they ask me what other things need prayerful attention. Those contacts are great blessings to me. It all starts with prayer.
We need launch helpers. A new website launch takes more hands than you might guess. And please don’t think of launch help as highly technical knowledge or experience. Launch help is something you can do where-you-are-as-you-are – no meetings to attend! What is launch help? If you have do email or social media then you can help. And your help is greatly needed! Just respond in the comment section below and we will take care of the rest!
Celebrating in giving. That’s what Kingdom citizens do. They lay up for themselves treasures in heaven (Matthew 6:19-21). One way we do that is to use our earthly resources for Kingdom purposes. So, equipping for life is what this ministry is all about. And even though we faithfully engage in that calling, the work requires resources. And the resource base needs to grow.
Celebrating Year End
As noted, 2019 will be a year of change. Your year-end gift can help us get off to a good start. Some contributors join hands with us on a monthly basis. Others contribute annually. There are still others who donate periodically. All of it is needed. One goal of the new membership site is to assist in making cash flow a little more predictable. That’s important when it comes to planning.
As always, take a look back. Enjoy celebrating what God has done. And then join me in reaching for tomorrow. Together, we can make a difference!
Soli Deo Gloria!