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Stories From the Frontier

"And thus I aspired to preach the gospel, not where Christ was already named..." Romans 15:20

To preach Jesus where He is not named...In recent decades this apostolic ambition has come to be referred to as frontier missions. It is the missionary labor that often happens within unfamiliar lands and unreached peoples. These workers are pioneers, and these are their stories - stories from the frontier. Right now, scattered throughout some of the hardest and darkest regions of the earth, there are teams of young adults living, praying, learning, and telling those who have never heard about this Jesus whom they love. They are profoundly normal and yet utterly extraordinary. They simply heard Jesus say "go", and knew they had to say "yes". 

They are forging into uncharted spiritual territory in order to establish a viable, reproducing witness of the truth of Jesus. The beauty of Jesus, the hope of the end of the age, the truth of the gospel, the necessity of incense, and the reality of sacrifice are so much more than tabs on a website for them. They are actually living out these truths, and these posts are snapshots from that journey. Anonymity must be maintained for security reasons, but all of these words were written by real missionaries living among unreached peoples within the 10/40 window. 

Learn from them, pray for them, and maybe you will be inspired to be one of them.

The Call of the Pioneer

There was a time when the Wild West captured the imagination of a generation. To explore, pioneer, and to conquer! Knowingly forsaking lives of comfort and ease, they dreamt as those who dream, to believe for a better, broader future. What lay beyond that lazy giant called the Mississippi? Golden streets of desire wishing to be uncovered? Land, free to stake and take, calling for willing plowmen? Whatever it was, they knew the reward beyond the temporary trials of travel demolished any pain of separation from the easy eastern shores.

Eternal Perspective

Many of us have heard the different accounts of the story of Mary of Bethany. This kind of love moved the heart of Jesus on the day that she chose to break what was probably her entire life’s inheritance over Him as an act of worship. Her testimony of love has seemed to move the heart of a generation to do the same - to give their lives to a man who is so deserving and so worth our love.

The Point of Prayer

Then Jesus came with them to a place called Gethsemane, and said to His disciples, ‘sit here while I go over there and pray.’ And He took with Him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be grieved and distressed. Then He said to them, ‘My soul is deeply grieved to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with me.’” Matthew 26:36-38

Finding Jesus in the Most Unlikely Place

“David” walked into our prayer meeting one Thursday morning completely unannounced. He came in, sat down, and listened to us sing our hearts out to Jesus in his native language. He sat in the room watching us, unfazed by our broken attempts to sing and pray in his mother tongue.  Afterwards David spoke with some of our local friends and began sharing about his Muslim background and his recent crisis of faith in Allah.

But Coke Did It - Part 2

In the previous post, I narrated my journey to a rural village amongst an unreached people group. There, I was not only able to meet with the only known believer in that region, but I also had the privilege of going to a “corner store” (it only had a fridge and a few old candy bars) to purchase a big ol’ bottle of Coca-Cola. While I guzzled to my heart’s content, I was forced to ask some hard questions about what I had in my hands. How in the world did Coke get there and seemingly everywhere else on the planet?

But Coke Did It - Part 1

Our journey began in a ten-passenger van on a Thursday morning. In six hours, we moved from highways to mountain roads to dirt paths. Eventually, we arrived at a small village nestled into a lonely mountain in the middle of what seemed like nowhere. We came to meet with the leader of the village - who happened to also be the only known believer in the region.

The Tea Shop

Yesterday a unique scenario presented itself. As I was walking around town one evening, I ran into a friend of mine while he was on his way to the mosque. He asked me if I would join him. I thought twice and decided, 'I don’t see why I can’t go into the mosque. I won’t join in the prayer, but I’m not afraid to simply stand in the back.' The prayer time lasted about 30 minutes and then we headed back to the cafe. As we left I asked if I could show them the new church that we opened just around the corner. They agreed and walked down the road with me toward the church.

The Front Lines

I find that being back in America for this visit has only reminded me that I'm called to the front lines. There's a part of me that feels relaxed and relieved to be back. It's simply not hard to live here. I can feel the ease of living here and, to be honest, I somewhat miss that. There is a relief in being around the steady, simple, and innocent. I know I'm called to the front lines, but it's not easy. I don't realize how much I'm holding my ground, fighting and resisting the enemy every day until I come back to friendly allies and feel the difference.

No One Like Him

I spend most of my afternoons at the church we are planting in our city. After our prayer meetings I wait upstairs as a handful of those passing by curiously stop in. As you can imagine, the majority of them have never been in a church, and even fewer have heard the gospel of Jesus Christ. Their minds are usually clogged with misconceptions about Christianity that have been produced by their own country and the crusades (even though they were almost a thousand years ago).

Taking Risks

Every day I have opportunities to take risks. In fact, following Christ by definition will require that you take risks. You won't always know the outcome of every decision you make. You won’t always have surety that it will produce what you expect in your mind, but you will have the surety that it will produce God’s desired results.