How do you see God at work in your world area? What God-sized dream do you have of the Free Methodist Church being a part of what He is doing?
FMWM world area leaders were recently asked these two questions. Read their answers below.
Mike Reynen, Africa Area Director
In a geographical way, we are seeing God open new doors for us in West Africa. The year the first FM missionaries came to Africa, 1885, three came to the West African country of Liberia. Within weeks, one died and the other two returned to the U.S., later to go to Mozambique. But, the FM story in Africa for 100-plus years has been Southern, Central and Northeastern Africa. The last two decades have seen us reaching new places in West Africa.
We Free Methodists have a gift for the African world. The gift is insight and passion for holiness. The gift is as valuable to a Presbyterian, a secularist or a traditional medicine man (of which there are still many). Everybody needs it, and we give it freely. The more places we can establish outposts of Free Methodists, the more opportunity there will be for this gift to be shared as widely as it ought to be.
Eric Spangler, Asia Area Director
Most companies strategize how to take their organizations to the next level. Moonshot thinking asks, “What can we do to take our organization up 10 levels?”
I’ve been considering how moonshot thinking can apply in Asia. I’m asking Jesus for moonshot vision and strategy. For moonshot resourcing of the work. For hundreds of churches and thousands of friends to come alongside to do what might seem improbable, let alone impossible.
The church in one large Asian country is rapidly growing. In fact, it’s predicted this country may become the world’s most Christian nation within 15 years. In India, it’s often reported that thousands commit to follow Jesus daily (one report said over 20,000!).
In many ways, the church in Asia is already out of orbit and on its way. We just need to add our portion of Spirit-powered rocket fuel to give it a fresh burst of energy and speed. The Asia Mission? A million Asians reached for Jesus. Hundreds of churches planted. Boys, girls, men and women set free spiritually and physically. Leaders equipped. New missionaries from FMCUSA and FMCAsia deployed. The church fully resourced to do the work of God that remains. The kingdom expanded, the Father glorified!
To view the YouTube video “Moonshot Thinking,” go to: http://bit.ly/YU1grL
Larry Winckles, Europe Area Administrator
God is at work in Europe among people who live on the margins of society – the immigrants, the refugees, the minorities, the poor and the displaced – as well as with those who choose to engage compassionately with them. The Free Methodist Church in Europe has the opportunity to make a difference by choosing to address the needs of these groups, both physically and spiritually. Multiethnic, multinational congregations that advocate for social justice, assist with integration into society, mediate peace, demonstrate the love of God, and boldly proclaim the gospel are what every European nation needs. Can this be the Free Methodist Church?
Paul Olver, Latin America Leadership Team
Wherever I go I see abundant evidence of God at work in Latin America. Lives and communities are being transformed; leaders are being raised up; groups and churches are being multiplied. There is a growing hunger to be based in scripture, Wesleyan in perspective, and holistic in ministry. Young people, ages 15 to 25 years old, are leading the charge. Pastors and laypeople, young and old, are eager to move away from ineffective structures and traditions to see an exponential reproduction of disciples, leaders, groups and churches – in order to cooperate with God to reach our continent for Christ. We dream and work to see an autonomous, indigenous, self-sustaining national church in each country in Latin America.
Middle East/North Africa (Impact Middle East)
Joe Culumber, Middle East/North Africa Area Administrator
We dream of the Free Methodist Church seizing the opportunities for mission in the Middle East and North Africa. We envision a vibrant movement of biblically based and culturally relevant house churches, led by well trained and dedicated leaders.
Despite limited resources and workers, the Free Methodist Church is offering hope and relief to thousands of refugees in the region. Overlooking ethnic and religious differences, the church is demonstrating to the world what it means to follow Christ.