We were SO BLESSED to spend this weekend with the folks at Tabernacle Baptist Church in Shoreline. We have a special place in our hearts for this church. Not only has Tab supported our coworkers in Spain through faith promise for MANY years, but their pastor was raised at Eastgate. Needless to say, we were honored to spend the weekend with someone “sent out” by our own sending church. We were also inspired by the rich missions history and emphasis at Tabernacle. Since its founding in the early 1900s, Tab has sent out hundreds of missionaries all over the world. I had the chance to flip through a thick booklet that included the testimonies and stories of every missionary sent out by Tab between 1906 and 1996, and I was in awe. The main message I gleaned was this: the world has changed, but God does not.
We spent Friday evening sharing our stories and passion for Spain at a delightful missions dinner. We shared the stage, most humbly I might add, with a young couple (wink!) who have faithfully and joyfully served the Lord in Salvador, Brazil for 44 years. And they’re going back for more! I can only hope that Chris and I are as eager to return to the field after nearly half a century and Dick and Mavis Buck.
On Saturday, Chris went to a men’s breakfast and I enjoyed lunch (but I admit I had breakfast) with the ladies. Mavis shared from God’s Word how very important it is to depend on Him for everything in ministry; that no matter who you are, how much you know, how long you’ve been a Christian, or what it is that’s needed, we must depend on God to provide it.
Sunday morning we shared more about our ministry in Spain with the Sunday school class and fielded questions. Chris and I enjoy sharing, but we really love questions! The folks at Tab did not disappoint! The theme of the conference this week was “Let your light shine” from the Hillsong song “Mighty to Save.” Chris shared a devotional called “natural light” about the ways God uses what comes naturally to us to reach people for the Gospel. The example he used is the Propaganda G.O.S.P.E.L. video from Dare2Share. It is always fun to share this video with crowds that are not youth. You know, it’s not everyone’s favorite medium. But people of all ages LOVE it! They love to hear “the greatest story ever told, hardly ever told” in a new way. They love to see how we speak the language others speak to tell the Good News.
Finally, Sunday evening, we enjoyed more Q&A with two small groups, where we got to share some ways to reach young people. I like to think we surprised them with our answers, which are not the typical “how to start a youth group” answers (more on that later).
Tab sent us off with a very generous gift for our Outfit & Passage, prayers, encouragement, and potential individual partners. We are thrilled to have such a missions-minded (that’s the new “missional”, Pastor Tom!) church on our partnership team, and we look forward to many more years.