God’s Call

15 01 2009

Hey guys,


I hope you’re keeping warm on this frigid Indiana winter day.   I was listening to the news this morning and they were speaking with the authorities in New York City about how they were helping the homeless of the City get shelter from these ridiculous temperatures.  It’s a cold day for someone without walls to block out the wind and warm blankets and clothes to keep the body from chills.


I’ve been trying to prepare my heart for our upcoming trip to Kenya in May and at the same time looking at the potential for ministry to the folks in the community around Second Friends Church here in WYM.  The needs are so great and at times it feels too overwhelming to even think about, let alone actually address. 


God brought this devotional to me this morning that I wanted to share with you all.  It was written by Frederick Buechner as he was a seminary student assigned to work in an East Harlem parish.  He makes these observations about the parish staff he worked with.

They had caught something from Christ, I thought.  Something of who He was and is flickered out through who they were.  It is not easy to describe.  It was compassion without sentimentality as much as anything else, I think – a lucid, cool, grave compassion.  If it had a color, it would be a pale northern blue.  They never seemed to romanticize the junkies and winos and deadbeats and losers they worked among, and they never seemed to let pity or empathy distort the clarity with which they saw them for no more if no less than what they were.  Insofar as they were able to approach loving them, I got the impression that they did so not just in spite of everything about them that was neither lovely nor loveable but right in the thick of it.  There was a kind of sad gaiety about the way they went about their work.  The sadness stemmed, I suppose , from the hopelessness of their task – the problems were so vast, their resources for dealing with them were so meager – and the gaiety from a hope beyond hope that, in the long run if not the short, all would in some holy and unimaginable way be well.  If, as I suspect, they looked at me and at the others who worked there only part-time as less committed that they, farther away from where the real battle was being fought, then I can say only that, of course, they were right.  But they seemed less to hold the difference against us than simply mark it and leave it for us to come to terms with as best we could.


God is calling us to something greater…to a great compassion and gaiety about His work.


What will be your response?


It doesn’t have to be overseas in a mud hut or living below the poverty line…but it might be.  God has a plan.  He has a plan for you and a plan for His Church.


Watch this video that was put out by a group from the International Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention called Go West Africa.  I think you’ll get the picture.



In light of all this, here’s what I want you to do. While I’m locked up here, a prisoner for the Master, I want you to get out there and walk—better yet, run!—on the road God called you to travel. I don’t want any of you sitting around on your hands. I don’t want anyone strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline—not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences.  You were all called to travel on the same road and in the same direction, so stay together, both outwardly and inwardly. You have one Master, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who rules over all, works through all, and is present in all. Everything you are and think and do is permeated with Oneness.

Eph. 4:1-6 (MSG)


As you are thinking and praying about all this, I want to let you know of some opportunities that are coming up that can help facilitate some this…


*WYM Winter Retreat – Understanding Friends’ Discernment

Feb. 14th (free to Sundesmos people who pre-register through WYM Office, free book as well)

Yes, it’s V-Day…so bring your sweetheart along for a heart filled discussion on how we hear God speaking to us and discern His will.  Sounds romantic right?!  In all seriousness though, this is going to be a great chance for you as Young Adults to really take some time to look at this idea of discernment and how we find out what it is that God wants to say to us individually and corporately.  See attached brochure.


*WYM Summer Internships

Applications available Feb. 1st and due March 1st

This is an opportunity for you to explore your gifts in ministry.  Whether you already know what your gifts and passions are or you’re still trying to figure it out, make your summer plans now to join the WYM Interns Program.  See attached brochure.


*Urbana Student Mission Conference 2009

Dec. 27th-31st, 2009

This conference is one of the top conferences in the nation bringing 25,000+ college students together for worship and to look at how we can change the world in Jesus’ name.  Start praying now about this opportunity…it only happens every three years…you don’t want to miss it!  More information to come.  You can watch the promo video on Facebook here:



Lastly, the song “Surely We Can Change” by David Crowder really seemed to fit with these thoughts.  Go listen to it and pray about the next steps God has in store for you.




To the King!



P. S. We could use your prayers for our WYM Board Meetings this Saturday…for discernment, wisdom and truth.  Thanks!




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