I love ministry! Jodi and I have spent the last few weeks talking, negotiating, and being excited about things moving forward. That has taken a lot of time, away from building and shaping areas of communication. That part I very much dislike! But I am determined to become an 'online' (although 'volunteer') minister. So, keep an eye out. Maybe something interesting will come along!
Basically we must decide now if we are going to return to being AGWM missionaries (as Missionary Associates), or it we will continue to be missionaries that are 'independent' or 'non-denominational'. Missionary Associates go overseas for one or two year assignments. Generally they are not credentialed ministers. There are advantages and disadvantages for both means. I am currently disabled, so I am volunteering, while Jodi works hard and we hope we can raise a salary for her. And possibly, we may be allowed by our missionary leaders to do both. But we are being offered an 'official' connection with our denominational mission, which we served for over a decade as career missionaries.
What are we interested in (besides the fundraising that all 'new' missionaries must deal with)? We have three projects very close to the ministry we did as Director of Southeast Asia Research Center (SEARCH). Of course our part is much smaller now. We are focusing on serving the goal of moving our mission toward UPG's, unreached tribes.
1. 'Change the Map' Buddhists Prayer Newsletter - We are now helping to publish an e-newsletter for folks who want to pray with wisdom for Buddhists to be reached. It is published by our Area Director Mark Durene and the PenAsia office. Each month a special prayer time on specific days important to Buddhists is highlighted. Jodi and I are going to pray on those days specifically to reach lost Buddhists.
Next month Jodi will be taking over the mailing, and eventually expanding the mailing list, but also the quality and quantity of information. Mark has a vision for this newsletter to equal one sent by our mission to inspire those who desire to see Muslims reached. We love serving vision! Soon I will pass along how to subscribe.
2. Transformational Research Toolkit - We have already completed an 'interview worksheet', a sheet with questions and summary spaces which would allow a new missionary or teams working in a new place to better understand folks who live there.
It is obviously also an evangelism tool. I hope to add to that, sheets that lead to deeper reading, online links and bibliographies, even who to try and talk to, so that the foundation for a deep cultural understanding can be built.
Our hope would be that new teams, reaching into people groups without Christianity, would take their interview data, collate it, and begin choosing strategies that might be effective. Water wells in some places, medical treatment in others. What do they think of Jesus? Knowledge and wisdom always led by the Holy Spirit.
3. UPG Prayer Focus - This is the project I am most excited about. 25 people groups in the region Asia Pacific have been chosen, first for study, then strategically placing missionary teams amongst them.
I am preparing basic information for these groups which will be placed at beyondreached.com, the unreached peoples imperative of the AG. Also the Asia Pacific website, apspendyourself.com. The idea of these sites is to develop prayer and support for specific unreached groups that are being targeted.
I hope to add infographics which can be downloaded and provide much greater detail than a few paragraphs on a web page.
So, we have begun back in missionary activity by asking the leaders we formerly served, how can we serve your vision? And they have gladly thrown activity our way! We have much vision beyond these first projects. We have tons of 'grunt junk' just to get our mission going. But how wonderful to be accepted back into the activity we left 11 years ago to Pastor our home church for a decade. We are excited to be included.
Please pray with us! And you can keep up by following on Twitter @scottfont, Facebook.com/scottfont, or subscribing to this blog at scottfontenot.com Let's Finish The Task!