I end this day with a heart filled with gratitude for our generous IAFR partners – individuals, churches, businesses and foundations – that make this ministry possible.
IAFR is a vehicle helping people survive and recover from forced displacement. And our partners are the ones putting fuel in the tank so we can show up along the Refugee Highway in life-giving ways.
A message from Europe asking if we can help a refugee ministry in Cyprus…
A call with a person with significant profile and influence in the world of refugees exploring the possibilities of gaining some frontline ministry experience…
An email from Switzerland connecting me with a person at the UN Refugee Agency to whom I sent a report about how churches in Lille, France, are working together to provide shelter and education to minors seeking asylum in the country.
Some initial planning for my next visit to Kenya’s Kakuma refugee camp in early 2019…
These are some of the things that I’ve been working on in the past couple of days.
There is so much that needs to be done – and that can be done – to help people survive and recover from forced displacement. The main challenge we face is finding financial partners who will support those ready and willing to serve with us along the Refugee Highway.
Pray with me that God would raise up the missionaries we need AND the financial partners needed to pursue our pressing mission.
Photo: Pastor Gatera in Kakuma refugee camp
I had a long overdue lunch with my friend and IAFR colleague, Pastor Gatera. We first met when he was pastoring a refugee church in Kakuma refugee camp (Kenya). He now lives less than a 15 minute drive from my office in Minneapolis.
We spoke of family, leadership, theology and ministry (both in the US and in Kakuma).
He shared how he has spent his life immersed in multicultural settings. His ministry has always been interdenominational in nature. His posture is always of a learner.
His calling is clear. He has a vision to help strengthen interdenominational associations of churches in refugee contexts. Refugee churches play a life-saving role in keeping hope alive in desperate places. But they get very little support and encouragement from the church-at-large – much less from a highly respected Christian leader who spent 20 years in a refugee camp himself.
He is in the early months of support raising. He needs help developing a network of financial partners.
Would you pray with me that God would raise up a circle of generous donors to release him into ministry? He needs about $5500/month.
Click here to donate to his ministry today!
One of our teammates hit the wall today. Support just hasn’t come together as quickly as hoped and the ability to pay their fixed expenses this month was put in question.
Financial pressure like that can stretch faith to breaking point. Not in a way that causes one to walk away from God – but the temptation is certainly there to walk away from the ministry. Stepping out of the business world into the world of support raising is not for the fainthearted.
In times like this, it is good to call to mind the reality that God is the provider for both businessman and missionary. The means and system of provision may be different – but that’s all they are. God himself is our provider.
It was good to pray together with my teammate today. I’ve been there before (and may be there again) – so my prayer was fueled by empathy. It was good to hear of some ways that God was beginning to provide before I left the office this evening.
Thank you, our ever Faithful Provider.
To all those readers who actively support me or other IAFR missionaries, I want to close with a word of deep appreciation. Thank you!