I love these videos of Matt Harding dancing around the globe. The videos from 2008 and 2012 are probably my favorites. Below is the clip from 2016 and while I’m not stoked on the tune, I’m still enthralled by the beautiful folks from all over the world. Each video is a reminder of how big God’s creation is and how huge HIS love is for that creation. It is also a clear picture of the ultimate Kingdom of Heaven which is not about geography but people in whose hearts God rules. They are an ever present reminder of Revelation 7 that speaks of not only the present, but the future fulfilled Kingdom where a “great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, was standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.” Also, they are an additional reminder of one of the most famous verse in the Bible; John 3:16 in which Jesus proclaims that “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that WHOEVER believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” That statement by Christ is such a great proclamation of God’s grace and also the diversity of HIS love. All of mankind is included in the offer to respond this amazing grace. And that, along with Matt’s videos, just makes me smile.
A HUGE thanks goes out to the anonymous folks at C4 who gave us a cruise for our 25th wedding anniversary. I told Ronda, our admin, that I was probably more relaxed after a few days into the sail than I’ve been in 10 years or so. It was a good time to decompress and just celebrate our marriage commitment and also God’s creation. For those who live in the Houston area; the ocean water really does turn blue once you get a few miles out from Galveston. It was incredible to see and experience the colors of the sea, sky, greenery and animals of Cozumel and Progreso.
But beyond that, it was amazing to see the international makeup of the crew on the ship that carried us on our anniversary adventure. I had heard of cruises like this before. The complement of the crew was comprised of people from all over the world. Western and Eastern European nations. Russia and Slavic nations. People from the UK, Australia, and South Africa. Countries from Asia, South America, and other were all represented. (more…)
Many of you know that world evangelism and discipleship holds a huge place in my heart. While Deb and I continue to financially support foreign missionaries and projects, it has actually been over 10 years since I’ve been out of the country. Debi has served on a couple of teaching trips to Honduras over the past few years but I have not used my passport since teaching in Nagaland, India with Australian missionary, Doug Willis back in 2003.
What is God doing in our day around the world? Most of my kingdom work is centered in an American cultural context. But what is God doing beyond the box of Western and American thinking about Christianity? Join us this Sunday at 8p Central as we welcome Dr. Chris DeWelt to the show. We will be looking at God and global Christianity. Chris comes to the discussion with the experience of having lived in the cultural context of Chile for 8 years and has served in close to 80 other countries and cultures. Presently Chris serves as Director and Professor of Intercultural Studies at Ozark Christian College in Joplin, Mo.
What is God up to around the world? What does authentic Christianity look like in other countries and cultures around the globe? What is it about authentic Christianity that transcends culture? How can we be involved in God’s work no matter where we are on the earth? Those and many other questions will be part of the discussion Sunday night. Don’t miss this exciting internationally charged live webcast. You are welcome to send in questions ahead of time or you can participate live through our SND Google + page, our SND Face Book page, or through the comment section here. So be sure to plan ahead and grab a friend and we’ll see you tomorrow night.
Back in 2008 a great preacher from Nor Cal introduced me to Matt Harding dancing around the globe and I loved the clip from the get-go. It was a reminder to me of how big and beautiful God’s creation is as seen through diversity and nature. Even now it reminds me of Revelation 7 where the apostle Paul spoke of the future and fulfilled Kingdom where a “great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, was standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb.” Today while doing some research I saw that Matt created a new clip for 2012 and I was just as pleased. While I like the music better in the 2008 video, it was cool to see places like Moscow, Helsinki, Manchester, and other spots around the US and the greater globe where I’ve been. Either way, the picture is the same. An awesome God, who created a colorful globe, filled with majestic people, and a profound message of divine love to take be taken to the world over. My, what a wondrous world we live in.
PS, if you could visit any of these places, where would you go and why?
I’d like to introduce you to a friend of mine from Iran. However, because of potential persecution, I can’t give you his name or location. We’ll just call him, Steve’s friend. I have not actually met my friend in person yet but we have been in correspondence through email, mail, and a few phone calls for about 12 years now. My first contact with him came with an international Christian correspondence course called International Bible School. The program works by placing ads in international papers offering free online courses. My friend and I worked through all the lessons and have maintained a growing relationship. The exciting part is that my friend began to follow Christ and we were able to get him connected with an underground church movement in the area. Today, I am posting a few questions that I recently asked him along with his answers. Many of us in the West have misunderstandings about people who live in parts of the world like Iran. I’m embarrassed to admit this, but I just assumed that my friend spoke Arabic. While he does; his native language is not Arabic, but Farsi. I would have known that if I had done some more homework. That is just one illustration of the many things we in the West don’t know about those wonderful people living in the Middle East. We see the headline news stories and hear about the persecution against Christ followers in those countries and many of these stories are true. But there are also a huge number of folks who are open to the love of Jesus and the kingdom of God. So take some time to read through the answers from “Steve’s friend” and feel free to leave any other comments you might have or questions also. Yes, I’m thankful for my friend from Iran and pray for him often. I hope you will as well. (more…)