Good morning! Well, it is a lovely, chilly morning here in Bangor, County Down, Northern Ireland! I want to highlight the annual Bangor Worldwide Mission Convention that is going on this week August 25-Sept 1, 2018. Pastor Alistair Begg is the guest speaker and leader of morning Bible studies and there are many speakers representing missions around the world as well.
The Global Village is an exhibition hall featuring missions organizations that reach around the world. It is amazing to see the ways Christ is inspiring creativity in His people in reaching the lost, broken, and hurting in slums, cities, rural areas, online, and right next door.
Please visit the conference website at www.worldwidemissions.org to see video clips, audio clips and photographs from the conference. A LINKS page is available so you can visit the many ministries represented at the conference.
PASTOR UMAR MULINDE’S STORY
I want to highlight for you the story of Pastor Umar Mulindi, a martyr for the cause of Christ. His story is briefly written about here: Pastor Umar Mulindi blinded by acid attack (2011). After being transferred to a hospital in India, Pastor Mulindi was finally taken to Israel where he received the surgeries he needed to repair the damage done to his face, eyes and ear. The amazing thing, Pastor Mulindi related to my friend and I at breakfast, was that as a highly trained professor of Islamic studies, he had been trained to hate the Jews and now he was receiving the most life-giving help from the very ones he had been taught to hate. Pastor said that the Israeli culture has such a high respect for human life and he was able to see that firsthand when he needed it for himself. Of course, the focus of his message is on the power of Christ (and Christ alone) for salvation, but the overflow of that great love of Christ is seen in every part of his story. You can see his story on YouTube:
The Umar Mulinde Story: Muslims Attack Pastor With Acid (approx. 6 min.)
Pastor Attacked by Muslims – Rev. Umar Mulinde (approx. 11 min.)
Stay tuned to the worldwidemissions.org website to hear his most recent talk to be given tonight at the conference.
Pastor Mulinde has a passion for all to know that the focus of our attention in life is not about Islam or Christianity, but about Christ. Christ is the one with whom we must deal; He is the one who loves and changes lives.
Pray for Pastor as he continues to share his story. He has written at least one book that he would like to share with you and which I will post here on this blog post as soon as I can get a title and resource information for you to be able to purchase.
When we read Psalm 119 about loving the law of God, we know, along with the psalmist, that this love consumes all. God’s Word has a cost attached. Are we willing, as Pastor Mulinde is, to love it regardless of the cost here on earth? For Pastor Mulinde, his youngest twin sons have decided they want to be a pastor like their father. What he has given up as a love sacrifice to the Lord is already bearing seed in so many hearts and minds.
When we read Psalm 119, let us remember Pastor Mulinde and so many others who have staked their lives upon the truth, the promise, and the certainty of God’s Word for salvation. Let us remember them to encourage us as we meet with large and small opportunities each day to stand boldly for Christ, as Pastor Begg says, even in the small possible conversations “on the bus” or in the check-out line–those conversations we don’t normally initiate, but that prove to be so surprisingly fruitful when we do. Are we living with God’s eyes and His heart? Or are we too busy with the things of this world?
Lord, remove from me the distractions of this world. This is a bold prayer but I release into your hands all that this prayer means. Create in me the courage I need to not only bear the cost of the cross of Christ, but to also forgive and love others sacrificially, and blossom forth into good and bounteous fruit for your Kingdom. For the glory and honor and praise of Your Name, Amen.