As we move ever closer to our time of deployment, the more we have come to realize that the fulfillment of the churches’ mission to reach the nations with the gospel of the kingdom will not come through lone wolf, bull-headed missionaries. As an independent, and driven self-starter, I have found myself continually repenting from my western, individualistic, “my way or the highway” mentality. This trip has been a constant reminder to trust fully on the sovereign will of our heavenly Father, the reign of his son Jesus, the guidance of his Spirit, AND the support of his body, the church.
During this past month we will have traveled over five thousand miles and visited nine states. We are physically exhausted but spiritually rejuvenated. John Piper has stated there are only two kinds of Christians, senders and goers. We have seen the sacrifice of those who are committed to sending us to Asia. They have shared with us their homes, food, finances, time, pets and of course their children. We have eaten, joked, laughed, sweated, cried, reminisced about the past, celebrated birthdays, encouraged each other in our struggles, and discussed innovative methods for furthering the gospel in Asia.
The “t” in t4kohasia stands for “together.” Since the inception of our vision and mission we strongly desired that one of our ministry’s key characteristics would be “togetherness.” Now we are just beginning to see just how important that support structure and mentality actually is. In the NT “togetherness” is often stated in the terms of unity, fellowship, and co-partnership. We get a small but pristine glimpse into this mentality from the Revelation to John. He is commanded by Jesus to write the words of the prophecy in a book and to send it to the seven churches in Asia. In its introduction, he describes his precise relationship to the churches. “I, John, your brother and partner in the tribulation and the kingdom and the patient endurance that are in Jesus…” (Rev. 1:9a). Although John was in a position of leadership and authority, he describes himself in terms of humility and equality concerning both relationship and mission to the seven churches. This is our prayer and hope with you our supporters. We are truly brothers and partners in “tribulation and the kingdom and the patient in endurance that are found in Jesus.” TOGETHER we can reach Asia with the gospel.