Listening to Stories

Since working with hospice as a chaplain, my children have asked me what it is that I actually do. When I was the pastor of a church, my role was easy for them to see. As I speak at conferences and seminars, they often travel with me. Even on mission trips around the globe they have sometimes accompanied me and know what it is that I do while I am gone. As a chaplain, though, they weren’t sure what it was that I do all day.

My answer? I listen to stories. I listen to the stories of people. I listen to the stories of those who are actively, imminently dying. I listen to the stories of their spouses, children and grandchildren. I listen to the stories of those who know them best. And I pray with them. Every person has a story. Everyone’s life tells of who they are, what they dream of, what they value and whether they are ready to stand before God and have their life story read back from His books. People are fascinating. No two are alike. Everyone has a unique story, yet the end of the story is the same for everyone. It is appointed for man once to die, and then the judgement. The beginning may change, the characters may be different, the adventures unique — but the end is the same. We all must stand before God and give an account to Him of our lives and whether we have included His Son Jesus as the central character in our story.

How about you? Are you ready for your story to be read before the Almighty?

Advertisements

The 180 Project Update

The 180° Project continues to be the focus of Ta Ethne as we head into the Thanksgiving season. Even with the transition from Montana to Georgia this year, the project is continuing at a steady pace. Four chapters of the resource book have been written and are in the editing process while the remaining chapters are still being finished. The subject of biblical repentance is a fascinating study and as more and more research is done, we are going back and incorporating our knowledge into the book. The release of this resource is still planned for early 2014, though the schedule to allow us to complete it on time will be a demanding one. Another resource planned for 2014 is the second in our dynamic commentary series, this one will focus on the books of Zechariah and Zephaniah. The current plan is to have both books to be in one commentary and our tentative target date is mid-summer 2014.

Thank you so much for your continued support and prayers. We continue to gain new followers around the world and hearing from them excites us. It is a wonderful feeling to know that we are making a difference in the kingdom of God and we strive to bring glory to Him.

When Life Reflects Songs

First, an apology for the lack of posts in recent weeks. Phase 2 of our re-location from Montana to the Eastern US is now complete. We have purchased property in Jeff Davis County, Georgia for Ta Ethne’s new home. This gives us access to Savannah and Jacksonville airports as well as 2 interstate highways. It also allows us to expand our donor base, something future growth will need. Thank you to all those who have been praying with us about this process.

Now, for today’s blog. At church this past week, we were singing a hymn, “Footsteps of Jesus.” One of the verses happened to strike me. It went like this:

Though they lead through the Temple holy, preaching the Word

Or in homes of the poor and lowly, serving the Lord

Why did these verses speak to me? Because I have been a pastor for the last 21 years, preaching the Word in churches across America and SE Asia. Now, as well as leading Ta Ethne’s ministries, I serve as a chaplain with a local hospice here in south Georgia. Oh, I occasionally preach and speak at churches – fill in, revivals, conferences and the like, but mainly I am in people’s homes, ministering to the dying. I have the opportunity and the privilege of meeting people when they are most vulnerable. I am able to serve families after death in learning how to cope with grief. Rich or poor, death comes to every person. Many I meet have no relationship with God. They would never come to hear me preach. I become their pastor by going into their homes and caring for them. They know I come not to get anything from them, but to serve them.

Being a chaplain has allowed me to use my whole repertoire of pastoral skills. It may not be as glamorous as preaching the Word in the Temple, but I hope it mimics my Savior in proclaiming hope to the hopeless, freedom to the captive and healing (ultimate healing) for the sick.

Continue to pray for Ta Ethne as we build community relationships and continue to grow in our mission to bring leadership training to churches worldwide.

Video – Bible Smuggling Into North Korea

A great post from a great organization

Do the Word

We recently released a 35 minute, exclusive documentary on the ministry of Seoul USA.  The video goes into never before released detail on the different ways in which we get the Bible across the border into North Korea.

Below is a short clip from the documentary which captures the emotional reaction of Mrs. Foley, Seoul USA’s President, when she viewed the dramatic footage of our North Korean underground partners being accused of espionage by North Korea.  These Christians are shown praying and singing to God . . . before they were eventually martyred for their faith.

Watch the full North Korea documentary at www.seoulusa.org/100-days-videos.

View original post