The life of evangelical churches and their spiritual leaders has been portrayed in some recent films and series. Can they help us start conversations?
A participant of the European Mission-Net congress shares what she took home from Offenburg, Germany.
Everyone to his own tastes, or at least that’s what they say. For each type of person, a certain church —since the church is supposed to go with your personality: depending on what you are searching you have a wide offer of seminaries, conferences and camps.
But something I have discovered, as time has gone by, is that we go to the seminars that we think we may enjoy most, instead of the ones that would better benefit us. Not to say that we go to church every Sunday to renew our relationship with God, hoping to see what others have prepared for us. It is like a tourist in Germany who is searching free wifi in a restaurant. If he doesn’t buy something for lunch, the owner will probably annoyed.
And why all this strange introduction, you may ask. Well, I wanted to talk about a particular congress. I’m going to highlight the differences between this one and others I have been to. And I will also talk about Germany, since this congress was celebrated there.
The Mission-Net congress is a camp/conference/fair which is celebrated every two years. But somehow it is also a camp because you need to bring your sleeping bag, your mattress and everything you could need to use during five wonderful days. This year it was between December 28 and January 2.
It is also a conference, because we had lots of speakers, worship times, mime, dance, interpretation in more than 10 languages, etc.
And it is a fair because many missionary agencies explained their work, and encouraged us to be part of it. They offered a bird’s eye view of what is happening in missions around the globe.
I was mesmerised when I heard about the big need for young Europeans who have a heart that is ready to serve God. Missionaries who have spent their lives serving God and still do, were sharing this vision with us. In the Dream Center they were open to hear our stories too, because this is what they do: they serve others.
Seminaries were another big part of this time spent in Germany. Many challenged us and also showed different ways to serve God today.
There was an outreach in the town of Offenburg and I liked the vision they had. We served the community, giving, playing children with young adults and even older people. We shared the love of Christ has given us with everybody. There was no sermon with a microphone. People came to reach us asking why we were serving the community. What a wonderful way to preach the gospel!
I also had the opportunity to serve in my way during Mission-Net. It was very rewarding for me to be in the backstage. Nobody could see us, the interpreters translating the sessions so that everyone could understand the messages in their own language. This helped me understand what Mission-Net really is.
Two years of organization had left a very well planned congress, but involving many of us participants, made us feel part of every event.
We did not go to ‘receive’, but went to learn and to be prepared to go wherever God wants to send us. There is so much need in the world and it is time to take the Great Commission as a command.
The Spanish team is looking forward to grow, to have more people involved. Together we can impact our communities, change our reality, so we can change the reality of others, too. We always will be secure, because it is Jesus the one who sends us out. As one speaker said: “There’s no better job than serving God.”