Today is a very exciting day for me.
I have been accepted by Global Recording Networks (GRN) as a full time member. Check out my GRN Blog.
That's right I am now officially a missionary.
Funny really as when I first arrived in Bible College the first question that was asked by fellow students was "were do you intend to serve?" it was always amusing to see the look of confusion on their faces when I said that I was planning on serving locally in Australia.
Of course times have changed now, but back then I was, apparently a little unusual, in that nobody went to Bible college to be a missionary in Australia . Not unless it was to the Aboriginals and a missionary to the Aboriginals is a little frowned on today. But they heard me say "locally" and that was the confusing part. How do you be a missionary locally?
When I said that I intended to serve in the local churches as a youth leader or whatever of that sort thing came along. The immediate response was "that's not being a missionary". To which I replied "how so". Of course they never had an answer.
How times have changed. Now the vast majority of students that go to Bible college are preparing to go into local ministry. Or at least that's the way it seems. But it's nice to think of myself as a trail blazer.
I saw a cartoon in our denomination newspaper recently, that kind of summed up were my head was back then. Two people were talking to each other and one said to the other:
" What do you mean you are going to be a missionary in Australia?" " I thought missionaries were people who went to places were there were people of different cultures dressing differently and speaking other languages etc, etc all around you."
To which the other person replied " Yes that's right ?"
Where I live there are times that you would think that we live in a Muslim country, if you looked at the local shops and the dress people are wearing.
But it wasn't like that when I left Bible college and they were not the people I was intending to reach. I needed a good Biblical grounding in order to reach those within our own culture that were disconnected from the rest of society. I only needed the local church to do that.
So why am I now joining an organization like GRN?
Well there are many reasons:
I have a technical background and being a member of GRN allows me to use this.
The society I live in has changed and more and more we are surrounded by many different cultures and languages and this requires a different approach to telling the Good news.
But most of all GRN Gives me the opportunity to tell the story of Jesus without the constraints and politics of a church congregation, without abandoning church.
More than this I still won't be leaving the shores of Australia to do it. At least, I think, not very often.
I am looking forward to a great adventure.