"Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, 'The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers in to his harvest field.'” - Matthew 9:35-38
We are so grateful to be part of a church that has such a strong commitment to missions. The Village Church of Irvine has two international areas of focus in El Salvador and South Africa. We are honored to send short-term teams overseas annually to both of these areas of the world with a focus on serving orphans and those who are impacted by HIV/AIDS. Last month our 2014 summer teams were invited to share how God moved through the teams in our church service. It was so incredible to see how many people from our small church had served the Lord in short-term missions this summer.
We are also excited by the fact that so many team members continue to return year after year, with a long-term commitment to the countries in which they serve. During the trip report one of the members of the South Africa team, Bryan Watanabe, announced that his family is praying about moving to South Africa long-term. There were tears in his eyes as he shared how God has burdened his family and broken their hearts for the South African people. There are also four El Salvador team members who are praying about moving to El Salvador in the future. We are thrilled that God is raising up workers within our midst!
Please pray that God continues to raise up both short-term and long-term laborers for our ongoing work in El Salvador and South Africa. Pray for our team leaders and ministry partners, that they will be filled with the Holy Spirit as they support, encourage and lead others to take the gospel to the nations. And finally, pray for those whom God is calling to serve in 2015; that their hearts will be open to leave the comforts of home for the life changing experience of serving in his marvelous harvest field.