Archive for January, 2011

Support Raising: By the numbers

Posted 27 Jan 2011 — by nick
Category GCM, Illini Life, Ministry

Awhile back I posted giving a brief rundown of the process of raising support most missionaries go through. It’s a long process, one where I feel God does more preparing and readying me for ministry than I anticipated He would and/or needed to.

I’m asked to be faithful, to continually step into uncomfortable situations for a introverted engineer. I get to meet new people constantly and hear their story and share mine. Along the way great friendships form and some folks even decide to support the work God is doing in and through my life.

You know I’m an engineer at heart, so numbers a thing for me. So I figured I’d give you all another batch of support raising numbers here:

1250 – the number of times we’ve tried to initiate with people to see if they’d like to meet. That could be anything from an email thread, a text message thread, facebook message thread, phone call or in person.

161 – the number of people committed to praying for us regularly.

123 – the number of appointments kept. Quite a few of those folks were couples.

53 – the number of people supporting us financially with a repeating gift. There are 16 additional people that have given special gifts with no commitment to repeat.

9 – the number of homes stayed in besides ours along this journey.

Pleaded with us for the privilege…

Posted 20 Jan 2011 — by nick
Category GCM, Ministry, Scripture, Spirituality

As a support-based missionary Paul’s writings have come to life for me. Recently I was reading his second letter to the church at Corinth and my eyes widened as a smile filled my face.

Paul is writing to the church in Corinth to check in with them after some time. You’ll recall that in his first letter to the church he was dealing with some rather egregious sin issues. Here he addresses them and references back to his past visit and letter and offers pastoral advice as usual. Among the topics he wants to discuss is their giving.

The church in Jerusalem has come under some hardships. In response Paul has been taking up a collection of gifts from the churches elsewhere to help the church in Jerusalem thrive again. The church in Corinth has promised to give and he is sending Titus to urge them to finish their ministry of giving – to do what they said they’d do.

Paul is raising support.

There is this church in Macedonia that Paul can’t help but brag about. He’s writing to the church in Corinth and he is telling them about this church in Macedonia and how they’re so poor he didn’t really even ask them to give, but they PLEADED with him for the privilege to give.

And now, brothers and sisters, we want you to know about the grace that God has given the Macedonian churches.  In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us. So we urged Titus, just as he had earlier made a beginning, to bring also to completion this act of grace on your part. But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you—see that you also excel in this grace of giving.

2 Corinthians 8:1-7

As another follower of Christ some years later, I get Paul’s excitement here. It’s not often others plead with you for the privilege to give. I can also get Paul’s excitement about generous giving.

Today we’re at 42% of our needed monthly support. It’s overwhelming when I stop and think about that, 66 individuals have chosen to give generously to see another church thrive, 51 of them on a regular basis.

January 2011 Update

Posted 05 Jan 2011 — by nick
Category Creation, Family, Friends, Fun, GCM, Illini Life, Jesus, Ministry, Photos, Spirituality, Winter

Hello friends below you should find our update letter for January 2011.

Download (PDF, 297KB)

Christmas in Vermont

Posted 02 Jan 2011 — by nick
Category Creation, Family, Fun, Photos, Winter

Amy and I spent the week before Christmas in Killington, Vermont with her family. It was a combined Christmas celebration and pre-celebration of her youngest brother’s high school graduation. We both agree, it was a sweet Christmas present and welcomed time with family to play and relax.

Here are some pictures from our time on Killington Mountain.