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Monday
Jul242017

Overcoming on the Mission Field – Part 2

Last week we shared the first part of Annerine Tomlinson’s testimony about her experience in Sri Lanka for her Charis Hong Kong missions trip. Part two reveals some of the challenges she faced and how she overcame them.

“On the first Sunday afternoon, we had the privilege of going to a Hindu village with a pastor associated with Smyrna church. . . . It wasn’t the friendliest reception. In fact, while I shared, I could see several men glaring at me with folded arms. For a split second, I felt unsafe. Some of my teammates also saw this. One of them told me he was thinking, Man, we better wrap this up and get out of here! Another just prayed in tongues. A thought went through my head: What if nobody responds to the altar call today? But right at that moment, I had another thought: This is exactly where I want to be, sharing with people in a context where this is not what they expect or believe in. This is where I want to preach my heart out, right here on this spot.

“Even before I had finished the altar call, hands shot up, including from a lot of the men who were glaring at me. Of the small crowd that assembled there, I guess almost three-fourths of them accepted Jesus. After that, some of these people went to get family from the little houses and brought them to be prayed for. Almost every old lady that I prayed for received Jesus. It was wonderful to have some young people of Smyrna church there translating and praying with us. Team members went with people to their houses and continued praying for people. I am beyond thankful for that day; it’s the stuff I dream of!”

Before her trip even began, Annerine had to count the cost of going on the mission field. The price she had to consider was the condition of her health.

“One of the things that I was slightly concerned about in the natural before we went was how I was going to be able to give out so much and go non-stop for so long. . . . I remember one night we had to climb seven flights of stairs up to a place to practice the skit, but I haven’t been doing that kind of physical exercise in many months because of a major health setback. It was huge for me! I was blessed beyond words to be able to go and give and minister non-stop and not being more tired than any other member of the team. That was incredible! That was really incredible!”

Annerine shares a few closing thoughts on making this missions trip possible:

“I feel completely alive and alert in these kinds of settings. The missionary and evangelist in me are in some kind of heaven if I can go somewhere where ground needs to be taken. I think it is the joy of the Father connecting with his children that explodes in our hearts. . . . Almost every day was my favorite day of the trip.”

Annerine says, “Thank you for this opportunity!”

Your support means changed lives. It’s that simple. If you are not a Charis Bible College World Outreach partner, consider becoming one today. If you are, then thank you! Together, we’re changing the world.

Comment below to share what part of Annerine’s testimony ministered
to you.

(Note: Testimony has been edited for length and clarity.)

Written by David Moore II

For resources and products in the U.S., visit www.awmi.net; outside the U.S., visit www.awme.net.

Monday
Jul172017

Overcoming on the Mission Field – Part 1

Missions trips can be life-changing and are an essential part of the Charis Bible College experience. After returning from Sri Lanka, Charis Hong Kong student Annerine Tomlinson had this to say:

“We came back from this outreach so encouraged! I saw again the beauty of teamwork. I haven’t been on a missions outreach with a team for a while—only on my own with a translator. I haven’t taken any teams on trips since I started studying at Charis, if I remember correctly. This was so rewarding
and fulfilling.

“On a personal note, I was so thankful that I was able to take the original material I have been working on and share it with the children in Sri Lanka. It was a great encouragement to me to see how they have received it with open arms and how well it worked.”

Preparing for a missions trip is never easy. What do you take? What do you say to the people you will be visiting? On the field, you quickly find out that you can do without a lot and that the best items are usually those you give away! Sometimes what you share can end up being something you didn’t anticipate. The same was true for Annerine:

“There was a lot of very hard work to be done preparing for this trip, but it all paid off. And none of it was wasted. We did not end up teaching as much on the topics we prepared, but our hearts were well prepared by it. And by the leading of the Holy Spirit, we knew what to do. I love it that we have the Holy Spirit to help us and also that we have the Holy Spirit to help show us what
to prepare.”

But there was one other thing Annerine didn’t anticipate: the number of children she would be privileged to encounter in Sri Lanka. One of the things Charis leaders tell students before going on a missions trip is to be flexible. Why? Because it’s likely things won’t go exactly as planned. But often what God does is a pleasant surprise.

“Initially we were only going to be in contact with 60 to 80 kids during the trip. . . . We ended up ministering to close to 250 children in some form or another. I was blessed by the children and their open hearts. They flowed with such ease with the original children songs. I was stunned!”

In the end, she experienced these words of Jesus to be true: “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35b).

Annerine discovered this while ministering to more children at an orphanage:

“The day at the orphanage was a personal calendar day for me on this trip. I never expected to be so touched by the children at Fridsro. I was so encouraged by how they responded to the music and the teaching, how they took it all in, and how hungry they were for interaction and love.”

Here are Annerine’s parting words to thank you for sending her:

“I am very thankful that we had this wonderful opportunity to go together on a missions trip as a second-year class. It has been amazing to do it through Charis contacts, since we could connect with quite a few like-minded people on the other side. Thank you for this opportunity. It was
absolutely life-changing!”

Stay tuned for more on Annerine’s trip to Sri Lanka, coming up next week.

If you are not a Charis Bible College World Outreach partner, please consider becoming one today. Your gifts make trips like Annerine’s a reality. Let’s keep sending out these world-changers!

(Note: Testimonies have been edited for length and clarity.)

Written by David Moore II

For resources and products in the U.S., visit www.awmi.net; outside the U.S., visit www.awme.net.

Monday
Jul102017

Leaving the Comfort Zone

What would you leave for the sake of the Gospel?

Some people leave family and friends, even countries, to share God’s love in nations across the world. But “leaving” doesn’t have to involve permanent or long-term geographic relocation. Leaving can simply mean getting out of your comfort zone, stepping outside the boundaries of the familiar, to reach out
to others.

That describes the second-year Charis Bible College students who visited the Dominican Republic earlier this year. The team, comprised of twenty students, two interns, and two staff members, left the familiar surroundings of the U.S. to bring the Gospel to a nation more than 2,000 miles away. Ministering on the streets and in the schools, the students didn’t do it in their own power but in the power of the Holy Spirit.

When the team traveled to a high school located high in the mountains outside Santiago, it was slow going. Four weeks of rain had produced terrible road conditions. The road was even washed out in many areas. But their leaving was worth it. Once they got to the school, the team performed skits and shared a short message of salvation. About 175 students received Jesus as their Savior! The Charis students found such freedom in being able to share Jesus so openly—in a public school!

During a second public school outreach, the team ministered to about 500 students and faculty members. Again, they performed skits and shared the Gospel. They also passed out food and candy, which was a hit with
the students.

The weeklong trip also included street ministry and open-air ministry in a park. During one of the open-air meetings, the team invited people to come forward with their prayer needs. Bryan Houser prayed for a lady who had pain in her throat. Because of their language differences, they were only able to communicate through hand signals. Bryan placed his hand on the lady’s throat and prayed. The pain lessened after the first prayer, but it wasn’t completely gone. He prayed again and the pain left!

Another team member, Kathy, prayed for an elderly woman with an eye problem. After praying for her, Kathy learned through the interpreter that the woman’s eye problem was healed. The team also prayed for Pastor Abel, a man their team leader had known for over twenty years. Pastor Abel and his wife pastor a church in a rough area of Santiago and had joined the Charis team during an outreach.

“Personally, the most exciting part of the entire afternoon,” Kathy says, “was the prayer for the pastor and his team. I felt the Spirit in a tangible way over his wife. I felt the anointing flowing over her like rain showering her, over and over. [It was a] powerful time!”

Evangelism wasn’t relegated to only the schools and streets, however. The team also ministered in local churches. During one such meeting, the students witnessed an event they do not usually encounter in the States. At the end of the service, people were invited up for prayer. Bryan had just finished praying for someone and had turned to join a teammate, Carrie, in praying for a woman who had come forward. As soon as Bryan placed his hand on the woman’s head, she fell backward. Carrie immediately knew there was demonic activity, so she continued to pray in the Spirit. When she laid her hands on the woman’s legs, the woman began to scream and cough. In the spirit, Bryan saw black smoke come from the woman’s mouth. He commanded the demons to come out, and the lady was set free!

Leaving for the sake of the Gospel is what second-year Charis missions trips are all about. Partner with us and help take the power of the Word and the Holy Spirit to the nations!

Written by Sylvia F. Wells

For resources and products in the U.S., visit www.awmi.net; outside the U.S., visit www.awme.net.

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