Months ago Sheltering Haven was chosen to describe our ministry, but just lately God has revealed some scriptural word pictures to prepare us for expanded Pastor to Missionary care. Take a look at four pictures in words of a Sheltering Haven found in Isaiah 32.
- Shelter From the Wind – Wind can take one’s breath away. Frigid winter wind chills to the bone while hot summer wind saps strength and energy. Missionaries face constant cross cultural winds of change, necessitating adaption. At times a wind break is needed by way of an email, a Skype call, a gift from home, or a pastoral visit.
- Refuge From the Storm – A storm can be dangerous. Often something more than a wind break is necessary, such as a basement during a tornado or a warm home in a blizzard. Missionaries, at times, face situations that endanger body, soul and spirit. They might need a place of escape, or protection, during the trauma of unexpected death, accident, crime victimization, or serious illness. A Sheltering Haven might be able to provide an emergency flight home, comforting arms in a hospital waiting room, a bed in a guest room, a shoulder on which to cry, or prayer when the trauma is too great for personal prayer.
- Streams of Water in the Desert – Where there is no water, it must, in some way, be provided. Some places of ministry are very spiritually dry. In Europe, less than 2% of the population is Christian. Working in that environment dries up the spiritual resources of even the most godly servant. A Sheltering Haven of pastoral ministry is able to provide spiritual refreshment through intercessory prayer for the power and anointing of the Holy Spirit while also providing the teaching and encouragement of God’s Word. It will be a joy for us to worship with a ReachGlobal city team as they sing with gusto in their heart language of English and soak up the teaching of God’s Word.
- Shadow of a Great Rock – In the desert a great rock provides a place of relief from the heat. We all need places to get out of the heat and exposure of life. Missionaries are often in the bright light of ministry. Everyone seems to watch carefully the lives of the missionary family. They need a place in the shadows, a hiding place, to receive a fresh perspective on life and ministry. A Sheltering Haven offers the experience of clearly seeing, in the shadows, God sightings of His work and blessings.
Blessings to God as He provides what is needed for His missionaries! We want to be a part of His plan!