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One Prayer China Update

by on May.14, 2010, under China, One Prayer

God loves diversity. God loves people. He loves China a lot. God loves His church, His children and that is what this trip was about. A discovery mission, looking for evidence of what God is doing. God is at work in China in one of the oldest ways known. Person to person… heart to heart. Right now, the church in China is illegal but flourishing, because God’s children will not remain silent.

As recorded in the book of Acts, in the days of the early church, also suffering under heavy persecution, the church continued to grow in spite of the oppressive Roman government, maybe because of it. Suffering is not all that it appears to be. Sometimes its a catalyst. Often, when things come a little to easy, they lose perceived value.

What is apparent is this. The people gather in small apartments, basements, abandoned warehouses in private. Evangelism is very personal. One person speaks to another, then another and so on. The small communities form close nit families of believers.  It was wonderful to witness. It reminded me of the days in the early 70’s when my wife and I accepted Christ in a small house church in Niles. Then it was a bunch of hippies who found Jesus and community. The community aspect of this is huge. I was a bit jealous as I saw the groups of people gathering together in an obvious display of adoration toward God and each other. In my own heart, I pondered how I could bring some of this home in a bottle.

We have allowed ourselves ( Western culture ) to become so independent that this kind of cultural and personal community seems alien. I for one am longing for it. I think it is one of the key missing elements in the western ways of “church”.

I certainly hope persecution is not the required element for us all to return to a deeper sense of community and shared worship of God.

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India One Prayer Report December 2009

by on Feb.25, 2010, under INDIA, One Prayer

One of the biggest blessings I get to experience is getting to be in the company of truly great men. Jack and Raj rank way up there on that list.

Jack and I met up with “Raj” in Chennai and traveled for more than a week visiting different villages and cities where the on going work of One Prayer church planters is happening. On this day, we were  in Trichy and decided to do the report from the top of Rock Fort. Wow.. what an amazing place.  But the story Raj and Jack tells is even more amazing.

The Kingdom of God growing by the minute. To be completely honest , I am so humbled by the work the church planters are doing there. The sacrifices they make to press the gospel of Jesus Christ forward is staggering. Every now and then I think I am having a bad day and my circumstances are too difficult, then I remember the church planters and church goers in India.

I am quickly silenced from my wining.

The work that is being done is phenomenal. It is in part because of generous hearted people who are “giving until it helps”.  Why do we have so much ? It is so we can share in this wonderful work that is so close to the heart of God. It’s a privilege. The Father lets us in on the blessing.

Me and Raj..

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A Tale of Two Kingdoms – Part 3

by on Feb.02, 2010, under Cambodia, One Prayer, Spiritual

In this final video, Part Three of The Tale of Two Kingdoms, An Eternal Kingdom, we visit the the villages where the Kingdom of God is growing rapidly. 

Only a few short months ago the church planters completed their training and went out into the villages and jungles of Cambodia with the good news of Jesus Christ. This message of hope for today and eternal life was received with incredible enthusiasm. Soon the new believers began baptizing each other in the name of Jesus. Now several of the church planters have begun planting additional churches. This is truly the definition of “going viral”. This is the body of Christ in action. Men and women, children of God being the hands and feet of Christ, bringing His Kingdom, from heaven to earth. 

While visiting these villages, many practical needs became evident. Clean water, healthcare, food, sanitation and educational needs. Now we have the opportunity to make a huge difference in the lives of these new believers by sacrificing some of our blessing to help meet some of there most basic needs.

This video documents and celebrates the work of God through His people being obedient to His call:

Matthew 25:34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,
36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ 
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink?38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you?
39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 
40 “The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.’

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Tale of Two Kingdoms – Part 2

by on Jan.24, 2010, under Cambodia, One Prayer, Spiritual

Part 2 of Tale of Two Kingdoms moved Jack and I from Seim Reap and the jungles of the north to Cambodia’s largest city, Phnom Phen. Along the way we stopped by to witness a baptism service by some of the brand new churches began by One Prayer church planters.. but more on that in the next post.

Just saying the name of the city, Phnom Phen raises childhood memories. I grew up during the height of the Vietnam war. Nearly every day I would hear Walter Cronkite reporting on the number of young men who had died in the war that day. I often imagined that could be my fate. Many of these reports would come in from Phnom Phen.  I will have more to say on that in another post as well.

But nothing could have prepared us for what we saw in and around Phnom Phen.

The killing fields, as it’s commonly referred too, is just outside of the city. For a full historical account, google will give you all you could ever want to read. The atrocities performed by Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge cannot be overstated. We also visited a school that had been converted into a place of torture, interrogation and murder.

When men falter and submit to the god of this world, satan builds a kingdom… and this is what it looks like.

However, there is a different kingdom, The Kingdom of God. And on the thrown sits Jesus Christ, the lamb slain for the sins of man. His Kingdom has no end, and there will be no place for evil. His subjects are His children and fellow heirs.

“2 Corinthians 4:16 So we’re not giving up. How could we! Even though on the outside it often looks like things are falling apart on us, on the inside, where God is making new life, not a day goes by without his unfolding grace.17 These hard times are small potatoes compared to the coming good times, the lavish celebration prepared for us.18 There’s far more here than meets the eye. The things we see now are here today, gone tomorrow. But the things we can’t see now will last forever.”

Part three will address God’s kingdom being built in the hearts of new Christ followers in Cambodia through the One Prayer church planting efforts.

Coming soon..

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Tale of Two Kingdoms – Part 1

by on Jan.07, 2010, under Cambodia, One Prayer

Part one of “Tale of Two Kingdoms” looks at the art, history, culture, religion and wealth of the Khmer people. They’re story includes a rise to incredible prosperity but as often happens when kingdoms are built by the hands of men, they fall. Jack Magruder, One Prayer field corespondent, highlights a few historical details as he tours the once opulent, now ancient ruins of Angkor Wat, Cambodia. The Kingdoms of men rise and fall. Only God’s Kingdom will last forever. Part one, the rise. Part two the fall and the rebirth of a new kingdom. One that will never end.

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One Prayer Update from Cambodia & India

by on Dec.27, 2009, under Cambodia, INDIA, One Prayer

Jack Magruder and I spent two weeks in December 2009 visiting Cambodia and India to observe the One Prayer church planters in action and to assess the physical needs of these new communities of believers. It’s safe to say that God is at work building his Kingdom. These baby churches are growing at astounding pace. Reminiscent of the early church in the book of Acts, new people are coming to faith constantly. What a blessing to observe. As you celebrate the new souls saved, simultaneously your heart breaks at the poverty. Malnutrition and the lack of even the most basic of human needs is everywhere. We are indeed praising God for His incredible work of salvation here and at the same time hearing His call to reach out to these brothers and sisters with a hand of love to meet there most immediate physical needs.

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Cambodia Update for OnePrayer

by on Jun.04, 2009, under One Prayer

“Cambodia…”  I know.. I know..  What happened to India ?  I’m still going to India, Tomorrow but I just finished the edit for OnePrayer : Cambodia update April 2009. God is doing a mighty work all over the world !

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