Martyr

A 2013 of God-given historic proportions

“The kingdom of heaven has been suffering violence, and the violent have been seizing it by force.” (Matthew 11:12) (HCSB)

2013. Momentum. Excitement. Heightened anticipation. Those are words describing the beginning of the year for To Every Tribe. To Every Tribe has momentum. Christ provided His mission with more than $490,000 in the purchase of 50 acres of buildings and land at Chachalaca Bend. There is much excitement about what God is going to do at Chachalaca Bend through missionaries who will be trained and sent to unreached people around the globe. Our anticipation of what Christ will do next through His people for his mission has been heightened by all the great things God has done for us in just the past year.

2012 – LOOKING BACK

To Every Tribe begins 2013 with hands held high in praise and hearts full of gratitude for Christ, his mission, and his work among his people! Here are our hand-picked top five things that God has been doing down in South Texas over the past year:

1. Largest attended Open House with Adoption of Village Q in Oaxaca, Mexico

2. Construction Begins on first Missionary Home in Goroka, Papua New Guinea

3. First 4 missionaries graduate from the 2-year program of the Center for Pioneer Church Planting

4. Record enrollment of 26 in the Center for Pioneer Church Planting

5. God provided over $490,000 of $1.85M, and we closed on the property at Chachalaca Bend

2013 – LOOKING FORWARD

Grateful for what God has already done, we are asking Him to accomplish the following through To Every Tribe in 2013:

1. Seek to develop and identify 2 complete missionary teams for Papua New Guinea, and expand to a potential of 3 teams for Mexico

2. Send workers to PNG to finish the house project in Goroka, and develop a construction and funding plan for the next missionary house

3. Realign and establish To Every Tribe for the next stages of growth and development in mobilizing the church, training disciple-makers, and sending missionary teams

4. Pursue a partnership with new local churches to expand the reach of Ekballo prayer, sending missionaries, and generous giving to the mission of the gospel to unreached people groups

5. Ask God and his people to provide over $1.35 million needed to purchase the 50 acres of buildings and land at Chachalaca Bend so that To Every Tribe will be debt free by 2014

6. Implement a strategic master plan for future training and sending from Chachalaca Bend

THE CHALLENGE

David Sitton, President of To Every Tribe, began the 2013 Open House at Chachalaca Bend with this challenge from Matthew 11:12: “The kingdom of heaven has been forcefully advancing, and forceful men lay hold of it.” (NIV) Christ, The Forceful Man who won the kingdom through His death and resurrection, is advancing his kingdom through “forceful” disciples willing to lay it all on the line for the gospel. Whether staying home in order to send or going as the sent, followers of Jesus have a responsibility to His mission of advancing the kingdom through a violent faith willing to do “whatever” for the gospel.

We are running headlong toward the challenges that lay before us in 2013 as Christ advances His kingdom through His people. Matthew 11:12 reminds us that Christ’s mission is a violent mission. 344 years ago, the Puritan preacher Thomas Watson noted, “The kingdom of heaven will not be taken without violence. The violent take it by force. The earth is inherited by the meek (Matthew 5:5.) Heaven is inherited by the violent. Our life is military. Christ is our Captain, the gospel is the banner, the graces are our spiritual artillery, and heaven is only taken in a forcible way…the right way to take heaven is by storm; or thus, none get into heaven but violent ones.”

The advance of Christ’s kingdom through To Every Tribe will not be without a violent faith, with war being waged against anything that would present itself in opposition to the gospel. This includes violence against the desire for all the baubles that this world has to offer. Paraphrasing Watson, Christ’s mission is military. But we do not wage physical weapons aimed at physical violence. We do not offer a sword of death and oppression. We offer Christ and his gracious provision in the gospel. Our sword is the Word of Christ proclaimed to the unreached, those who have no access to the good news of Jesus. This war is waged by sacrificial proclamation, sacrificial praying, sacrificial serving, sacrificial sending, and sacrificial going to those who have not heard the gospel of Jesus Christ. There are 3 billion unreached people on this planet. There are 3 billion reasons for a violent faith that takes heaven by storm.

OPPORTUNITIES TO PARTICIPATE

We are eager to see what Christ will do through To Every Tribe in 2013. And there are many opportunities for you to participate with us in Christ’s mission.

1. First and foremost, you can pray that Christ will be honored and glorified through To Every Tribe in 2013, and that He will continue to use To Every Tribe to spread His name and His fame among those who have no access to the good news of Jesus.

2. Your help is needed in serving in many diverse areas of ministry.

3. Your gifts are needed to come alongside local churches in helping train and send more risk-taking followers of Jesus to some of the 3 billion people who will never hear the good news of Jesus unless we tell them. We still need $90,000 in order to have full ownership of the 50 acres of buildings and land at Chachalaca Bend. We need your help. Participate with us in propelling missionaries into the harvest from Chachalaca Bend by clicking on this link: http://bit.ly/givenowTETM

God-given historic proportions. 2013 is going to be a year unlike any other at To Every Tribe. We look forward to partnering with you in the gospel for the advance of the gospel and Christ’s kingdom! Pray for us. Partner with us. The gospel continues its advance in 2013 and we are excited Christ has included us in His mission, a mission fueled by violent faith that sacrifices all to take the kingdom for the sake of Christ.

What’s With the Name (Of This Blog)?

The name of this blog, Reckless Abandon, comes from the quote on the top of the right sidebar of this blog.  The quote comes from a letter that Ed McCully wrote to Jim Elliot on September 22,1950, during his time as a law student and working as a hotel night clerk.

McCully’s statement–that he desired to live a life of reckless abandon for Jesus–exemplifies the driving passion of To Every Tribe.  To be recklessly abandoned for Jesus and the gospel means that we take seriously Jesus’ demands to lay down our lives–figuratively and literally–to spread the message of him and his redeeming message.  It means that no price is too great to risk taking the gospel to the hard-to-reach corners of the globe so that “those who have never been told of him will see, and those who have never heard will understand” (Rom 15:21). 

For Ed McCully, living a life of reckless abandon was a dead-serious matter.  At the time he wrote his letter, it meant leaving law school and dedicating his life to missions.  Eventually it would mean martyrdom. Here’s the larger context of what McCully wrote to Elliot just over five years before dying as a missionary martyr in Ecuador, South America:

Since taking this job things have happened. I’ve been spending my free time studying the Word. Each night the Lord seemed to get hold of me a little more. Night before last I was reading in Nehemiah. I finished the book, and read it through again. Here was a man who left everything as far as position was concerned to go do a job nobody else could handle. And because he went the whole remnant back in Jerusalem got right with the Lord. Obstacles and hindrances fell away and a great work was done. Jim, I couldn’t get away from it. The Lord was dealing with me. On the way home yesterday morning I took a long walk and came to a decision which I know is of the Lord. In all honesty before the Lord I say that no one or nothing beyond Himself and the Word has any bearing upon what I’ve decided to do. I have one desire now–to live a life of reckless abandon for the Lord, putting all my energy into it.

Ed McCully (left) with Peter Fleming and Jim Elliot

Maybe He’ll send me someplace where the name of Jesus Christ is unknown. Jim, I’m taking the Lord at His word, and I’m trusting Him to prove His Word. It’s kind of like putting all your eggs in one basket, but we’ve already put our trust in Him for salvation, so why not do it as far as our life is concerned? If there’s nothing to this business of eternal life we might as well lose everything in one crack and throw our present life away with out life hereafter. But if there is something to it, then everything else the Lord says must hold true likewise. Pray for me, Jim.

Man, to think the Lord got hold of me just one day before I was to register for school! I’ve got money put away and was all set to go. Today was registration day so I went over to school to let them know why I wouldn’t be back. I really prayed like the apostle asked the Ephesians to pray, that I might ‘open my mouth boldly.’ I talked to all the fellows that I knew well. Then I went in to see a professor I thought a lot about. I told him what I planned to do, and before I left he had tears in his eyes. I went in to see another professor and talked to him. All I got was a cold farewell and a good luck wish.

Well, that’s it. Two days ago I was a law student. Today I’m an untitled nobody. Thanks, Jim, for the intercession on my behalf. Don’t let up. And brother, I’m really praying for you too as you’re making preparation to leave. I only wish I were going with you.

Here at To Every Tribe we’re looking for a whole generation of young Ed McCullys who are so passionate about Jesus that they’re committed to living lives of reckless abandon for him.

Letter to Jim Elliot, September 22,1950, during his time as a law student and working as a hotel night clerk:

Since taking this job things have happened. I’ve been spending my free time studying the Word. Each night the Lord seemed to get hold of me a little more. Night before last I was reading in Nehemiah. I finished the book, and read it through again. Here was a man who left everything as far as poistion was concerned to go do a job nobody else could handle. And because he went the whole remnant back in Jerusalem got right with the Lord. Obstacles and hindrances fell away and a great work was done. Jim, I couldn’t get away from it. The Lord was dealing with me. On the way home yesterday morning I took a long walk and came to a decision which I know is of the Lord. In all honesty before the Lord I say that no one or nothing beyond Himself and the Word has any bearing upon what I’ve decided to do. I have one desire now – to live a life of reckless abandon for the Lord, putting all my energy into it. Maybe He’ll send me someplace where the name of Jesus Christ is unknown. Jim, I’m taking the Lord at His word, and I’m trusting Him to prove His Word. It’s kind of like putting all your eggs in one basket, but we’ve already put our trust in Him for salvation, so why not do it as far as our life is concerned? If there’s nothing to this business of eternal life we might as well lose everything in one crack and throw our present life away with out life hereafter. But if there is something to it, then everything else the Lord says must hold true likewise. Pray for me, Jim.
Man, to think the Lord got hold of me just one day before I was to register for school! I’ve got money put away and was all set to go. Today was registration day so I went over to school to let them know why I wouldn’t be back. I really prayed like the apostle asked the Ephesians to pray, that I might ‘open my mouth boldly.’ I talked to all the fellows that I knew well. Then I went in to see a professor I thought a lot about. I told him what I planned to do, and before I left he had tears in his eyes. I went in to see another professor and talked to him. All I got was a cold farewell and a good luck wish.
Well, that’s it. Two days ago I was a law student. Today I’m an untitled nobody. Thanks, Jim, for the intercession on my behalf. Don’t let up. And brother, I’m really praying for you too as you’re making preparation to leave. I only wish I were going with you.