This week is one of my favorite home weeks of the year that doesn’t technically constitute a special holiday. It is Missions conference week. Which means epic church supper (which we missed due to bachelorette party… Good thing the party was awesome) and then four days of awesome Bible teaching and guest missionaries coming to speak on God’s work in their ministries.
I am not actually someone who is in to missions. I mean, I think they are important, but I have never had an overwhelming urge to do missions. But, this conference is really cool. And it made me decide many years ago that one day I want to do some sort of medical missions in the future.
I love having good teaching and I am a geek, so Bible teaching over many days is a big win.
But, it is the updates from the missionaries I find amazing. To hear what is happening in other countries. The crazy things God is doing. The crazy things these people are doing.
This year, we had a man from India who helps run programs for children teens, widows and lepers. It all started with two kids coming to his door begging one day. His Mom convinced him that they could help tutor the kids. And then he learned they often had no food all day, so he gave them some. Then, he started telling them to bring friends. On it went. Now, they help over 3000 children. And started a bunch of other programs as spin offs.
Last night, the executive director from our local pregnancy resource centre came in to speak. The city we are in has the highest teen pregnancy rate in Canada, so this is pretty big. It is cool to see how the services they provide are going and the impact they have on both the women and men they serve.
Tonight is D, the staff worker for InterVarsity Christian Fellowship in our area. Given, I worked with him as the secretary/treasurer for years and have had a chance to support he and his wife in their ministry, I am pumped to hear what he has to say.
My favorite night, though was puppet night. Okay, it was also the scariest night.
There are these two missionaries who have spent the better part of the last 28 years in the Philippines doing a variety of programs, namely a values program in the public school system and some vacation Bible school type stuff. The whole notion of living in another place for that long blows my mind completely. They speak the language, get the culture. I think it is as much home there as it is here. But, now they decided they have done enough there and are moving on to a small country in East Africa.
It amazes me how people can just give their lives like that. I know it is a calling, but it still such a sacrifice and so very intense.
But, the most interesting part about these ladies is that one of them is a ventriloquist… Complete with a Filipino dummy. Yes… A dummy. With moving eyes and eyebrows and his own mini Bible. He creeps me out a bit… He creeps the Child out a lot. But, for some odd reasons, most kids love him… And so do many of the adults.
The dummy is very punny and they really play up that he travels in a suitcase. They also cracked him out for Sunday school for the first time since they left the Philippines. His head almost fell off. It was disturbing, yet hilarious.
Their prayer cards have a picture of the two of them with the dummy (and even more freaky was that it was making eye contact with the camera, sort of).
I think it is interesting how they use their talents. And that the talent is partly surrounding a very creepy dummy. I guess it is proof that God can use anything, no matter how strange or eerie.
Missions conference is amazing. Because we get to see what God is doing in the lives of millions. And there are treats. And Bible study. And a dummy. All in all it is a great couple of days. And thus, I was ridiculously pumped to be home for it.