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2bobcraft2We have our fingers on the pulse of modern missions. Mission work is changing rapidly as the world's cultures and global conditions are changing. Ease of travel and communication impact how the Gospel is spread. But at the heart of missions, there is the work of the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and the obedience of the Church to carry out Jesus' command to go into all the earth.

We want to present challenging biblical truths, insights into today's missions environment, and progress reports on reaching the entire world with the Gospel. Please keep checking our blog regularly for updates, stories and challenging thoughts from Scripture! 

Transformed

2 Corinthians 3:18 (NIV)
"And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit."

biblesmileThere are many in our world who will admire Jesus during the Easter season as they reflect on the stories of His compassionate miracles and His selfless sacrifice. These are attributes to which many in this world would aspire. In fact, I have been to places in our world where people gladly place an image or picture of "Jesus" alongside the other gods they worship. His life and death story is inspirational and certainly warrants attention and respect. But for those who have had a personal spiritual encounter with Jesus Christ there is a far deeper dimension to Him. His story and the words He has spoken in the gospels, become life changing.

In Christ, there is a personal transformation from fear to faith. I work in cultures where people often serve the "gods of nature". These gods demand daily sacrifices and capriciously punish people with illness and misfortune. When people in such environments discover that there is a Creator God who loves them and sent His Son to die for them, they are set free from fear and they place their faith in this loving God. This is an eternal truth that transforms.

For those who put their faith in Christ there is also a transformation from perplexity to peace. Around the world people are perplexed by the problems of broken relationships, addictions, hurtful actions against friends, family and even strangers. These problems are universal, but the solution found in forgiveness through Christ on the cross, is truly cross cultural. Listen to these words of a former prostitute in Myanmar, "Jesus has worked major changes in my life. Since I accepted Him as my Lord and Savior, I have received true forgiveness, love, satisfaction, fulfillment, joy and peace. I no longer live in my old habits of fear. Christ is the lover of my soul, my friend; He is my Life and Living water."

For those who have placed their faith in Christ, there is an experience of transformation from fear to faith, from perplexity to peace and from guilt to glory. "We are being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory." "Glory" is an interesting word. We rarely use it in ordinary conversation about ordinary people. It is usually reserved for soldiers and athletes, those who perform noble feats or achieve physical excellence. But in Christ, He shares His blessing with us, ordinary people, allowing us to experience a radical transformation of life through His Spirit. The Bible reveals the Word of God and Jesus said, "The words I speak to you, they are Spirit and they are life." (John 6:63)

His Word brings transformation.

ERC

 

Cambodian Scripture Need

Enjoying Our "Bible Buffet" ... While Newborns Cry for Milk

Robert Craft - President

camchildwcLike newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, now that you have had a taste of the Lord's kindness. 1 Peter 2:2-3 (NLT)

None of us like to hear the cries of a hungry child, especially a newborn. We are so relieved when the cries turn into the gentle sounds of feeding. At first, their tiny stomach fills on just a few ounces, then it takes an entire bottle and eventually several bottles a day!

Peter reminds us that spiritual hunger is similar to that of a newborn's hunger for milk. I am not going to startle you with pictures of starving children with swollen bellies. I am simply going to share with you that there are approximately 5,000 new believers coming to Christ in Cambodia every month! These new believers are gathered in small group Bible studies learning to be nourished in their faith by the Word of God. Our ministry partners in Cambodia have requested 10,000 New Testaments as soon as possible.

By the grace of God, most of us enjoy a virtual "Bible buffet" everyday with multiple Bible versions sitting on our shelves and many more available on our smart phones. The newborn believers of Cambodia only ask for a single copy of their own. How can we sit by and listen to the cries of these new believers for God's Word and not be moved to action? Please help with this critical need.

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Fatal Distractions

Hebrews 12:2 (NIV) Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith...

Colossians 3:1-2 (NIV)
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.  

Keeping your eyes on the road ahead is becoming harder and harder as new technologies allow instant communication and entertainment to appear in the palm of you hand, even while driving. The statistics reflect how dangerous these distraction have become.  In some cases the distractions are fatal.*

As sad as this is for highway safety, I see a dangerous trend among Christians as it also becomes easier and easier to take our eyes off of Jesus and off of the mission He has given us. 

I like Facebook and I enjoy my smartphone as much as anybody.  But as one who travels a lot, I can tell you that many people in terminals and on planes are glued to their devices.  There is less and less communication going on between people who are sitting next to each other. They are texting, watching videos, playing games and have very little eye contact or conversation with those around them. 

It is far too easy to get distracted, taking our eyes off the path that God has called us to. These usually frivolous and meaningless distractions rob our time and our funds for what could have been better spent on God's kingdom and His will for our lives. These distractions can even become fatal to our walk with the Lord as we drift farther off the "road" into oncoming spiritual traffic that Satan sends our way.

As I travel I see an entire generation of young people, of all nationalities, becoming more and more distracted from spiritual things by gadgets and gimmicks. Let us all take stock of our stewardship of our time and attention and keep our eyes on Jesus and His plan for our lives and His love for the world.    BC

*Texting While Driving Causes:

1. 1,600,000 accidents per year – National Safety Council
2. 330,000 injuries per year – Harvard Center for Risk Analysis Study
3. 11 teen deaths EVERY DAY – Ins. Institute for Hwy Safety Fatality Facts
4. Nearly 25% of ALL car accidents

 

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