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About RNDL

One of God's little ones living in Brazil since 1984. Main blog is a must-visit.

RNDL

I received a missions newsletter from a good brother working in a hard place. I'm in no position to evaluate his work. Each worker stands or falls before the Lord who is Judge of all. At the same time, I see comments like the following one repeatedly. This one was made after 25 years of work in the same place:

If our support is not continued the work will probably die in the places where we are working because our full-time preacher and his family will not be able to continue to work there.

It is possible that this is true because, in part, of the methodology used in that place. Across the board, American Christians are reproducing the bad habits they practice in the U.S. They go in, build a building, hire a full-time preacher, ship in American preachers for a week at a time to teach, and develop their work in this way.

Friends, there is a better way than using large amounts of American funds directly in a mission effort. We hope to develop works that, after years of our investment, will finally become self-supporting. But here's the catch: As a work begins, so it will continue. This is a principle that has proven to be true time and again.

As a work begins, so it will continue.

So start a work in the manner that you want to see it functioning 10 and 20 years down the road. That means, in part, not creating a dependence upon foreign funds. This has been repeated through the years, but we don't seem to be making much progress on it, because we are reproducing a failed American model.

RNDL

  1. Prayer requests added today to the post about the report video. If because of time you have to choose, go for the prayer.
  2. Wrote a poem this morning for the children, "Jesus Changes Everything." To the tune of "Jesus Loves Me."
  3. Bought a duffel bag to serve as a carry-on to take cousin Jackie's painting, rather than risking putting in the luggage and losing or damaging it.
  4. Society seems to hang by a thread, and so much of our lives with it. Then recall the power of the Almighty God whose purpose cannot be frustrated.
  5. A week's worth of posts on irmaos.org on the theme "propósitos." With a bit of work, might turn out to be a 50-page book.
  6. An original couplet: Trek through the desert with shoes and robes preserved, / Your needs are met when God as Lord is served.
  7. A Bible verse: "You must pay attention to the exhortations of my servants the prophets. I have sent them to you over and over again. But you have not paid any attention to them" Jer 26.5.

RNDL

So said the architect of London's "walkie-talkie" skyscraper, in concave form which focuses the sun's rays to very high temps:

In an interview with The Guardian, Viñoly said that horizontal louvre windows on the south side that had been intended to prevent this problem were removed at some point during the planning process. While he conceded that there had been "a lot of mistakes" with the building, he agreed with the building's developers that the sun was too high in the sky on that particular day. "[I] didn't realise it was going to be so hot," he said, suggesting that global warming was at fault. "When I first came to London years ago, it wasn't like this ... Now you have all these sunny days."[41]

Not my fault, he says. The phrase of our age.

RNDL

One of the interesting things about success is that we think we know what it means.

The same can be said for church growth. Many people write about it. Few have done it. Some have produced something that looks like church growth, but which is in fact a swelling of people or a selling of a product. Those who have done it may not be able to explain the true reasons for it. Some write from a biblical standpoint, and it is to scripture that we must go for the causes and contributions to church growth. But even then is it legitimate to write about what one has never done and does not plan to do, by obeying the Lord's mandate?

How to Find Your Purpose and Do What You Love - Brain Pickings

RNDL

This statement saddens me deeply:

There have been more buildings erected to the honor and service of Jesus Christ in the United States of America alone during the last decade only than were previously erected all over the world in honor of all the kings and rulers who ever lived.

When we use the erection of church buildings as a measure of the church, things have gone terribly wrong.

It is noteworthy that the building the author erected in Manhattan at great expense is now occupied by a group so progressive that he would not recognize it nor have fellowship with it.

RNDL

In today's article, "Jesus' covenant is better," Jon Galloway continues to survey Scripture as a part of his congregation's Bible reading program.

You can almost hear those who first heard this begin to question: why do we need another covenant? God established his covenant with us on Mount Sinai. What could be better than that?

I've been working a lot lately on the covenants. My studies with Paulo and the emphasis on not taking practices from the OT have led me to it.

RNDL

"If I could give you information of my life, it would be to show how a woman of very ordinary ability has been led by God in strange and unaccustomed paths to do His service what He has done in her. And if I could tell you all, you would see how God has done all, and I nothing. —Florence Nightingale

The end of the first sentence seems like something is missing, but the thought is there.

RNDL

Blogger Cory Collins asked for suggestions on how to keep faith alive:

How can we avoid – or recover from – a stale, dry, and weak spiritual life? What works for you that may help others of us? What does the Word of God tell us about refreshment?

Here's my answer:

One of the best ways to keep faith from growing stale and to stay alive in the Lord is through teaching the Good News to others. There are few experiences more satisfying, more invigorating, than to be a part of someone's conversion, to look anew at the faith through the eyes of someone who is just now discovering it. Being on the front line of the gospel keeps us sharp spiritually, helps us deal with the real life issues that others are facing, and helps us to give the proper value to the precious blood which purchased our salvation at so great a cost.