Monday, September 1, 2014

Pondering Partnership

"No, you keep it. So you'll have it when you get back." - Tyler 

These words held confidence that made my heart sing. He was putting music back in my hands that I had held all summer; music for his senior recital. Tyler is cellist, and a senior at Black Forest Academy. By God's grace he believes that I will be back to accompany him.
When I first embarked on this journey into missions, I had a REALLY hard time asking people for money. Why should people give money so I could go to Europe? Through communicating with supporters as well as my organization TeachBeyond, God has changed my perspective. Please hear me when I make the following:

Giving to missions is not a one-way street. Did you get that? If not, read it again. Please.

In certain parts of the United States, we have attendants that pump gas into our cars for us. No matter how you may feel about that, it enables our vehicles to run. He puts the gas into the vehicle, we give him money, and then we drive away. The attendant does (likely) not refine and produce the fuel before it gets delivered to the station. Nor does (likely) get into our vehicle, much less get into my driver's seat. But by putting fuel into the vehicle, he plays an integral role in allowing the vehicle to run. Even though he may not ever see where the vehicle went, he played a vital part in getting it there. In a similar way, you as an individual have the opportunity to enable ministry to happen. When you partner with a missionary by giving them money, you are metaphorically linking arms with them,  helping to "fuel" the vehicle of ministry. You enable them to live in a situation in which the Word of God is taught, people are shown what it looks like to be like Christ, and training for life happens. This kind of ministry cannot happen on its own, just as a car cannot run without fuel. BFA serves many, many families around the world. The students come from many different cultures, family situations, and home environments. Regardless of how you may feel about boarding schools, these are students who God has called us to love.

Partnership is a two-way street.

Just like any other human relationship, giving one way as a ministry partner can be extremely exhausting and unfulfilling. What has been exciting this time around is to pray for support to come in, and then as people give, to continue praying specifically for them. At this point, I want to say a huge thank you to those of you who are already partnering with me. It means the world to me to have you on my team! Please know that I also partner with you in prayer as specifically as I can! *Also as a side note, if there is a way I can pray for you specifically please email me here: Lauren's email. As a missionary, I want to stay in touch with my ministry partners and supporters to the best of my ability, giving as much feedback as possible. I do my best to post pictures here and to Facebook, blog here to keep you in the loop, and communicate prayer requests through family and friends at home. Finally, as you contemplate partnership, with me or any other missionary, please do so prayerfully. For many of us, funds are limited, making giving difficult. I encourage you to lift these needs before God and to ask Him to direct you as to where He would have you give.

So my question is this: will you partner with me, and enable me to fulfill the calling God has placed on my life to love the students at BFA?
School at BFA starts tomorrow. Will you help get me there so I will miss as little of the school year as possible?

If you would like to partner with me, please click here: https://give.teachbeyond.org

I would be honored if you would partner with me. May God bless you as you consider partnership and ministry!

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