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News and Notes about Brigada, Your Gateway to Missions Networking!
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Compiled by Doug Lucas, Cincinnati, Ohio
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In this issue….
* FOLLOW UP TO “SO WHERE WILL ALL THE ON-SITE WORKERS COME FROM?”
* THE NEED FOR MARATHON RUNNERS, NOT JUST SPRINTERS
* FOR THOSE GETTING STARTED LEARNING ANOTHER LANGUAGE
* PRACTICAL STUDIES ON HINDUISM
* FOR THOSE WITH GREAT MISSIONS DREAMS
* CONTACT INFO. FOR LEARNING TESL/ESL
* THE TRUTH ABOUT “=3D” CODES IN COMPUSERVE
* WHAT OTHER MOVIES CAN TEACH SOMETHING SIGNIFICANT ABOUT THE ‘TASK’
* NOW YOU CAN STUDY CHINESE ON THE INTERNET
* GLOBAL GLIMPSE FROM CHAD
* PRAYER INFO. ON JAPAN
* TYPO FROM LAST WEEK IN “GREAT PRAYER RESPONSE”
* GET AUDIO HELP FOR TEACHING ENGLISH
* FLOOD OF RESPONSES FROM LAST WEEK’S, “WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH?”
* THE TRUTH ABOUT PRAYING THROUGH THE WINDOW III
* A HAT TRICK & A CRACKED RIB: FAIR TRADE
* TO SUBSCRIBE TO BRIGADA TODAY
FOLLOW UP TO “SO WHERE WILL ALL THE ON-SITE WORKERS COME FROM?”
Remember the 16 of May Brigada Today and its item, ” SO WHERE …”??? We’re still getting mail on that one. The question dealt with how to come up with enough workers to meet the needs of the least reached. One reader headed to Central/Eastern Europe pointed out this past week that maybe the problem isn’t so much with finding workers, but rather with finding the funds! For example, this reader knew of 6 willing workers, ready to depart, who didn’t have a clue where funds would originate! So maybe we need a simultaneous push to develop the sending base while we look for ‘goers’! As a matter of fact, that’s the conclusion we’ve come to in our own mission mobilization efforts (PACE and Team Expansion). We’re trying to facilitate the staging of these “Pit-Stops” to call forth churches who will adopt unreached peoples, then help them draw up solid plans as to how to pull off a major outreach among the unreached. (Next Pit-Stops are in Raleigh, Sept. 19-20, contact firstname.lastname@example.org for registration; then Tulsa, Oct. 10, contact email@example.com for registration; we’re working on one for central IL for Oct. 17-18.)
THE NEED FOR MARATHON RUNNERS, NOT JUST SPRINTERS
One of my best friends in all the world happens to be working right now to open up operations in a new field in Asia. He wrote this past week, “I feel so puny over here. The challenge is so HUGE! Less than 1% know the redemption story. I think, man, we need 1000 PACE projects here alone! This is a place where we can really be creative too. Everyone can have a part in one way or another.”
He continued, “I stayed all night with a man who though at a young age of 52, knows 10 languages, has been very instrumental in the translation of a Bible in his mother tongue for his people, and has together with his group of friends started 40 + churches in … [a ‘creative access’ country]. I couldn’t help but feel real puny going before the Lord that night!”
“What a passion! A shining light.”
He went on, “I met a lady today….who committed to mission service in 1951. Wow! The marathon runners are so few today…I am so thankful that I have been able to meet several before they pass on. Their works have been done in relative silence with little fan fare, and this lady will probably be here till the Lord comes back or till He takes her home — a medical clinic, a dormitory ministry so tribals can go to school, a “guest room”, leadership training center, outreach to rescue girls before they get into prostitution, ministry to the aids victims! Incredible. They say 200,000 will be orphaned in the next 5 years due to both parents dying of aids! If she were younger (76) she would start an orphanage. Who will God raise up??”
My buddy’s right about the marathon runner thing. There has been such an exciting emphasis on short-term missions (which is good) that we wonder where we’ll come up with those who can invest the 5 years it’ll take to learn some of these languages!!! (Internationals working side by side with mission senders, in at least a portion of the cases, we trust!) We’d all better pray that at least 1 in 5 short-termers decides to go back for the long haul — and I’m not just talking about 5 years! We need some 20+ year people!
FOR THOSE GETTING STARTED LEARNING ANOTHER LANGUAGE
And for those who want to become marathoners :-) Kerstin Hack (our German correspondent, you’ll recall :-)), recommends a www page offering all sorts of free or cheap electronic language learning programmes (anything from Arabic to Russian). http://www.dcs.warwick.ac.uk/~bear/Language-Page.html. Check it out!
PRACTICAL STUDIES ON HINDUISM
The India Center for Mission (at the U.S. Center for World Mission) is sponsoring a shortened Hindu Studies Institute this summer, from July 5-11, 1997 (Weekend and weeknights). Topics include: Hinduism in India, Philosophical, Popular and Bhakti Hinduism, the New Age, Sikhism, Folk, Hinduism, etc. Approximately 24 hours of teaching. Dr. Vern Middleton, and Rev. Premkumar Dharmaraj will do the teaching. Exec. Director Greg Parsons invites all, “Come and get a week of practical knowledge on how to reach Hindus!” For more information, I’m sure Greg will be glad to forward your mail to the correct department… :-) firstname.lastname@example.org.
FOR THOSE WITH GREAT MISSIONS DREAMS
Have great missions dreams? Find out how to help your church be effective in reaching those dreams at the ACMC Mid-Western National Conference, July 24-26 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Elmbrook Church is hosting this 3-day powerhouse full of practical “how to” workshops on how to do missions effectively in the local church. For a brochure e-mail David Mays, ACMC, email@example.com or call 317-842-0348.
CONTACT INFO. FOR LEARNING TESL/ESL
(/) Will you ever forgive me for not including contact information for the tesl course mentioned last week? :-) (“NOW’S YOUR CHANCE TO LEARN TESL/ESL”) Sorry! Edic4lei@aol.com should do it! Thanks for those who took time to seek it out! Instead of TESL, I’d better brush up on my composition! :-)
THE TRUTH ABOUT “=3D” CODES IN COMPUSERVE
I mean CIS. (Yikes, why’d they go and change their name to the name of a commonwealth that stretches halfway around the globe through 13 time zones!!!) Apparently =3D the reason we =3D see weird codes in Compuserve (I mean CIS) =3D these days has to =3D do with something called =3D “quoted printable.” If you’d like to take action, one reader suggested that you switch to a MIME compatible email client (which is supposed to decode these things; trouble is, if someone without a MIME client forwards an already mangled message to you, your MIME client is silent, which, by the way, is exactly what most real MIME clients should do anyway, right? :-)), or more simply, just ask people not to send text as quoted-printable (an option in all Internet browsers and email software). Otherwise, you can simply live with it (Now there’s a novel thought!). According to Wayne W. McDougall firstname.lastname@example.org, “you can read it after a while, especially when you know why and what it is about.”
Maybe Wayne works for some kind of secret agent firm or something? :-)
=3D here, =3D there. Here a =3D, there a =3D everywhere a =3D.
Maybe we should just go back to straight ASCII. Who needs all those fancy fonts ANYWAY! :-)
Kind of like a hiccups. =3D Excuse me.
Also, if you’re a Cserver and would like to try switching back to the “oldmail” system, just to see if that helps, the go word is “NPX32” not “Mpx32” as previously mentioned a couple of weeks ago. Thanks David.
WHAT OTHER MOVIES CAN TEACH SOMETHING SIGNIFICANT ABOUT THE ‘TASK’
Bennett Sloan email@example.com liked the idea of using Preacher’s Wife WHEN IS “ENOUGH ENOUGH?”; in last week’s edition of Brigada Today). In fact, he’d like to start a little collection of movies that can teach something, then post the list here for everyone to see. If you have an idea, send it to Bennett with the title, source (unless you can rent it at the corner video store), and the way you’d suggest using it. For example, Bennett pointed to The God’s Must Be Crazy “which is about the adventures of a pygmy bushman trying to return a Coke bottle that drops out of the sky and disrupts their idyllic existence. People learn about another world view, that has much to commend it.” When you send the note, please use the Internet form of underlining the movie title (see examples above) if possible, to save some time reformatting! Thanks! Don’t forget about regular “teaching videos” or mobilization films too! Bennett, we’re counting down the weeks ’til you send us the compilation!
NOW YOU CAN STUDY CHINESE ON THE INTERNET
… and without the =3D Chinese characters! :-) Well — sort of. Wheaton College Graduate School and the Institute for Chinese Studies have combined to put together “INTR 683: CHRISTIANITY & CHINA: ISSUES IN MISSIONS & CHURCH HISTORY.” It’ll happen starting this week, June 18 – August 14, 1997, with Brent Fulton as the primary instructor. Doug Milford firstname.lastname@example.org wrote, “This is a two semester-hour credit, graduate level course combining the convenience of self-study with the benefits of ongoing interaction made possible through e-mail communication. Taped lectures and course materials will be mailed in advance. Then students will proceed through the material and interact with one another and with the instructors via e-mail.” Sounds great! For more info., contact email@example.com but better do it today!
GLOBAL GLIMPSE FROM CHAD
Pierre Guelmbaye, leader of Gospel Recordings Chad, was robbed and injured as he traveled back from Nigeria by way of Cameroon. Although he was hospitalized for two weeks with head injuries, Pastor Pierre was already making plans for more distributions. His only concern about the mugging was apparently how he would pay for the medical treatment. Of the 160 people groups in Chad only 22 have gospel recordings and 120 are considered unreached.
(Source: Global Recordings Network e-mail info and prayer requests, 29 May 97 GloReNet@compuserve.com or http://users.aol.com/glorenet/, and IMB Status of World Evangelization Database, 1996.)
Global Glimpse is compiled each week by John Hanna, Caleb Project, Littleton, CO.
PRAYER INFO. ON JAPAN
The Japan Evangelical Missionary Association (JEMA) which represents over 1300 evangelical missionaries and 44 agencies working in Japan, has just published a daily prayer guide for Japan. Entitled OPERATION JAPAN, it is available in both Japanese and English. 152 pages. Apparently it is full of statistics, background facts and little known knowledge about Japan, prefecture by prefecture. The English version is $7.90 ($6.90 for ten or more copies) The Japanese version is $10.40 (I guess those characters are harder to draw??? :-)) For more info. contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
TYPO FROM LAST WEEK IN “GREAT PRAYER RESPONSE”
(/) If you’ve been trying to write the GCOWE rep. who told us about the great prayer response, better write Bennie Mostert and crew at email@example.com. Sorry for any trouble that typo caused! Must have been something I ate… or something I failed to eat maybe! :-)
GET AUDIO HELP FOR TEACHING ENGLISH
Now you can get customized help for teaching English as a second language from Audio Scripture Ministries. Apparently you tell them what 2nd language you’re working with and they customize the package! They’ve got two-pocket albums for $5.95 postpaid. (10 or more are only $3.95 each postpaid.) The price is right. Includes a cassette entitled “The Greatest Person Who Ever Lived” in English (NIV) in the one pocket and this same cassette in the student’s language in the second pocket along with a printed booklet of the content on the English language tape. The cassette is an arrangement of selected passages from the Gospels which accurately and compellingly portray the main events in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ.
Sounds pretty cool!
For more information contact,
Audio Scripture Ministries
P. O. Box 460634, Escondido, CA 92046-0634.
FLOOD OF RESPONSES FROM LAST WEEK’S, “WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH?”
Yikes. I think we touched on a nerve! :-) We received a flood of responses from Brigada participants who could relate to last week’s item, “WHEN IS ENOUGH ENOUGH?” Testimonies ranged from those who said that they appreciated the “3-block” orientation (if you generally work morning and afternoon, you try to take off the evening; if you work in the evening, try to take off the morning; you get the picture) to those who said they had been trying for years to get a handle on that kind of thing. Many appreciated the Preacher’s Wife parable — and not a single reader took us to task for utilizing a secular movie to make a spiritual point! :-) One “home missionary” (who serves in an agency headquarters office) reported reality, however, when he shared the demands of his day. With children, homework, reading to the young ones that he loves, etc., we gathered that he almost feels he starts a second job when he gets home at night! He was open to input… but I’m not sure anything will ease the burden for parents with small children who need care. The bottom line is that we need to pray hard that God will enable us to “stay the course” during those times when others (like our kids) need us at those special times. And to be fair to our employers, we probably need to log 8 hours/day average for them… but we probably also need to learn to not feel guilty if we use remaining hours for family, friends, and our own personal/spiritual needs. Whew. Covey and Day-timer notwithstanding, that is not an easy task. If you’ve got a secret potion or even simple advice for this Brigada participant, write DLucas@TeamExpansion.org with the Subject line reading
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH
and we’ll see what’s out there. Thanks!
THE TRUTH ABOUT PRAYING THROUGH THE WINDOW III
Last week, we wondered out loud, “WHY AREN’T I HEARING MUCH ABOUT OCTOBER?” Several responses came in and rather than try to report on the varied opinions, we just compiled them together for you to read for yourself. You can retrieve the 10k file by sending a message to with only the words,
get brigada ptw3lets
in the text of you email message.
Now here’s an imponderable. Why in the world do we use “aren’t” with the word “I”? I mean just say it out loud. I aren’t a bit impressed with the English language, are you? :-) Aren’t I supposed to use aren’t with “I”??? Yikes. No wonder we need special courses! :-)
A HAT TRICK & A CRACKED RIB: FAIR TRADE
This past Wednesday night, I had a ball… literally! It was the final night for our adult soccer league here in Northern Kentucky. Throughout the evening, I’ll admit I felt a little extra “gusto” and probably played with a bit more energy, just because I knew it was the last game of the season. And believe it or not, for the first time in my life, I took home what soccer players call a “hat trick” — 3 goals scored by the same player in one game. (Keep in mind that part of the reason for my celebration is that I’ve really only been playing soccer for 3 seasons — so forgive my gushing please; I’m really on a U-12 level! :-)). First came a header to the far post off a serve from the left wing, then a quick turnaround shot to the inside, from 6 yards out, and then the most exciting goal of all, a full volley taken first touch out of the air, again from the left winger, with the outside of my right foot (I was facing the winger with my right side toward the goal). It snapped just inside the far post into the side of the net, like lightning. Call it luck or just being in the right place at the right time… either way, the keeper didn’t have a chance on that last one.
But the game didn’t come without cost. About halfway through the first half, when I was really getting jazzed by all the excitement, I took on their center forward and ended up in a head-on collision with him. He didn’t slow down a bit when he saw me coming up to try to steal the ball. Now perhaps that wouldn’t have been so bad except for the fact that this particular forward is 6’4″ and looks something like that “incredible hulk” guy that used to be on late-night syndicated TV. You know . . . the one with the rip in the back of his shirt? I bounced off his clinched fist, pinned against his rib cage, and in that one fleeting moment, saw my lungs pass before my eyes. Yikes. It was a nice effort, but a dumb idea. My stop at the family doctor the following day confirmed my worst fears — I have a nasty cracked rib as a souvenir of a really fun game. :-)
Later that day, I was emailing a friend about the game and I found myself saying, “Ya know, I’d play the whole game over again, fractured rib and all, because I’d never scored three goals before in one game.” For a moment, as those words left my fingers, I thought I must be crazy. And then I realized, we human beings are pretty strange. (Well — at least this one is. :-)) We’ll take calculated risks for something we love. We’ll endure critical shortages, extreme hardships, and outlandish pain — if we reckon that the payoff justifies the reward. Don’t believe it? Just take a look at that baby in the crib at night, as she is deep in sleep. Touch his leg and reach within your soul and I think you’ll agree — you’d probably jump out in front of any maddened assailant to save your little bundle’s life. Without hesitation. Why? You judge that it’s worth it. (Okay, I admit it. The baby analogy works better with some people than the soccer story, right? :-))
That’s why I’m sometimes a bit confused when I hear the “it-was-God’s-will-that-we-quit” theology. You know the line. “We looked for God to open a door, but we just couldn’t get into the country under present conditions, so we’ve scuttled our plans. Or try this one… “We tried to get that correspondence course printed, but with all the barriers we ran into, we finally concluded it just wasn’t God’s will.” Or imagine this one? “We tried to make a go of our marriage; but all the constant bickering proved to me that it just wasn’t God’s will that we stay together.”
I don’t think so.
You see, I learned Wednesday night, we can’t blame my broken rib on the game — or “Lou Ferigno” (the forward). :-) We place the blame exactly where it belongs: player inexperience. (Mine!) I didn’t have to collide. It was a choice I made — and probably a pretty bad one. But the funny part is, I still would have played the game, even if I knew the collision was coming!!! And the scores? The truth is, there were other players on my team tons more talented than I. But not all of them scored goals. In fact, few did. So what is it that results in goals? Why do some people manage to crack the ball in the net while others don’t? Well in my case, I tell you what — it wasn’t raw talent and grace. Believe me. ! I think it was more a matter of hustle. You know what I mean. You’ve just run all the way back to your own defensive third to help ward off a “numbers up” attack, when all of a sudden, your favorite winger gets the ball and everybody else is huffing and puffing (it’s basically an over-30 league! :-)) and you know that no one but the winger is running toward the attacking third. Well what do you do? You reach down deep within your body and summon up some kind of remaining breath and you race the winger to the goal so you’ll be there when the winger crosses the ball to the center. You’ve got to. Your winger is counting on someone to be there. Your team is counting on you. And besides, you love the game.
So see — it’s not that the game is too hard. It’s not that the other team is faster. It’s not that the weather was threatening. It all boils down to this: How bad to you want to be down there at the edge of the 6-yard box when that pass comes in from the side.
That’s what it boils down to: How bad do you want it.
So — cracked ribs and all — give me Wednesday night’s game. We won 7-6. But who really cares about the score. We had a blast. And that’s what made it fun.
And so what’s your challenge? A new country to enter? A translation to do? A marriage to salvage? Another day of language learning? How bad do you really want it to happen. And in spite of cracked ribs, or threatening weather, are you willing to huff, and puff, and summon up some breath from a piece of lung-real estate that you didn’t know you had? If not, you can blame it on “God’s will” if you want, but you’ll never be able to be sure, this side of that final goal line in the sky. :-) Only God knows. And He never tells. But if you persist (like the widow with the unjust judge — or like Moses when he pleaded for grace for the people of Israel) apparently, God isn’t always so “negative” after all!
Wow — a “hat trick.” Traded for a cracked rib. In my book, that’s a fair trade! :-) How bad do you want it?
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