On the border and in Baja we are talking about developing an evaluation process for our church planters. Assessment is a great tool that can aid people in making better decisions about whether they have the gifts and skills to be competent church planters.
For us to do a better job in church planting we need to improve our evaluation process. That is a huge need, so we need your prayers!
This week I’m in the Philadelphia area working with World Team evaluating their missionary candidates. The great thing about this opportunity is that I’m able to learn more about how we can do a better job on the border and in the Baja as we seek to develop a strong assessment process and ongoing training for our church planters.
I’m impressed by the questions that I found in World Team’s new candidate booklet. They were used by the Dohnavur staff, led by Amy Carmichael, missionary to India in the late 19th century-early 20th century. Carmichael served in India for 55 years without a furlough.
Here’s a sample of some of the questions that they would ask of those interested in serving in missions:
- Do you truly desire to live a crucified? (This may mean doing very humble things joyfully for His Name’s sake.)
- Does the thought of hardness draw you or repel you?
- Do you realize that we are a family, not an institution? Are you willing to do whatever helps most?
- Apart from the Bible, can you name three or four books which have been of vital help to you? Apart from books, what refreshes you most when tired?
- Have you ever learned any classical or continental languages?
- Have you every had opportunity to prove our Lord’s promise to supply temporal as well as spiritual needs?
- Can you mention any experience you have passed through in your Christian life which brought you into a new discovery of your union with the crucified, risen and enthroned Christ?
In a statement written a few years later, Amy Carmichael put it briefly, “Do not come unless you can say to your Lord and to us, ‘The Cross is the attraction.'”
–From A Chance To Die: The Life and Legacy of Amy Carmichael, by Elisabeth Elliot.
Maybe we should be asking some of these same questions. In missions if there is any gloss it will quickly wear off, so a love for Christ is of the utmost for his highest.
Paul said it well in 2 Corinthians 5:11a & 14a
Therefore, knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade others… For the love of Christ controls us…
I pray that this commitment and drive will be true for all who follow Christ.
In His Grip, Dave
- Vision to Reach Northwestern Mexico (diasolifeontheborder.org)