You are probably asking yourself how are these three things connected in any way. Just follow along and you will see.
My wife, Donna, and I recently returned from a trip we had been planning and looking forward to for a long time. We visited South Dakota and the great sites of Mt. Rushmore, The Badlands, The Black Hills, Custer State Park, Crazy Horse Monument, and a whole lot more. It was an awesome trip as we saw sites so different than what we are used to in the flat lands of Florida. The weather was certainly diverse as we went from temps in the 80’s one day to in the 30’s the next with snow, plus winds of 35 to 40 mph gusts.
Our first day in South Dakota was very hot as we had expected much cooler temps. I am one that likes to have our trips planned out so we see everything we possibly can in the time allotted to see it. Thus our first day landed us at the historic Mt. Rushmore Monument. There etched in stone are the faces of four US Presidents that shaped our nation’s past and set the course for her future – Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt. I was awestruck at first glance of these massive stone carvings in the rocks of the Black Hills towering peaks.
.While sitting high up in the amphitheater awaiting the evening lighting ceremony, Donna noticed a small crowd of people gathered around someone at the lower left part of the seating area. They seemed very upset and then she heard someone scream, “Medical Emergency” ! She made me aware of the situation and asked me to go offer my assistance ( I am a certified CPR / AED/ First Aid Instructor).
Upon reaching the scene, I quickly became aware of an elderly gentleman in full cardiac arrest. There were those already doing CPR and Rescue Breaths on the man, but I offered my assistance as I know this gets very tiring very fast. Someone then arrived with an AED unit (Automated Electronic Defibrillator) and I began assisting with the use of this on the man, who was still in full arrest.
After several rounds of CPR and two sets of shock from the AED, the man began breathing on his own and his heart started beating again. By this time other medical professionals were on the scene and began to take over the needed care assuring everyone the man had strong pulse and heart rhythm. It was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life, but one in which I felt prepared to do what needed to be done.
I’m sure by now you must be thinking what does all this have to do with “Missions”?
A week later I have had time to reflect on this incident and what I participated in and witnessed. This man visiting the Monument is just like so many going through life never expecting something like this to occur. But, he was dying right in front of us. He was much like the many Missionaries and Churches that are experiencing a slow death due to lack of vision, passion, direction, desire, and relationship. We all know others in this weakening condition.
Then there was the call to action in which many capable and compassionate people, all strangers as this man was there alone, came to the man’s need. They Mobilized to accomplish a work which saved the man’s life. I witnessed people trained and skilled coming together with one purpose in mind, reviving this man.
What a great example of that which needs to take place with our Churches and Missionaries today. Here2There Ministries teaches and trains both Church leaders and Missionaries in the skills of developing Church Partnerships. When educated and trained, both Members and Missionaries are able to be Mobilized in ways that create meaningful Partnerships which lead to productive relationships in the lives of the Missionaries and the Church. I invite you to visit our website at here2there.org and check out the Church Partnership section to discover more.
Such relationships and partnerships don’t just happen, any more than that man at Mt. Rushmore could save himself. It took a team of people to act in one accord using the skills they had learned to accomplish the task.
Oh what a Miraculous task it was! A life was saved! PTL!! That is the same result we see when Churches and Missionaries form Partnership bonds that revive their lives and their ministries in ways that can only be described as “Miracles”. Just like the church at Jax Beach that was looking for a Haiti connection was introduced to two ladies who started Christian Academy of Petit Gouve, Haiti, and had attended a H2T Missionary Training on how to establish Church Partnerships met and formed a relationship that will lead to great things taking place for each.
Or the Missionaries from Kenya that see Church Partnerships as a solution to their sustainable funding issues have identified seven churches which H2T is coaching them to become Partnership Churches with their Kenya Missions. It will be life changing!!
If you have not read the book Antioch Revisited I highly recommend you do so to learn more about the need for Church Partnerships and the advantages of doing ministry in Partnership Relationships.
Church Partnership Lead