Here are some questions I am frequently asked about missions:

When are you moving to Cameroon?

I will begin fund raising in September 2013 and finish my studies at Boyce College in May 2014. After finishing these and some other, smaller World Team requirements, I plan to begin year-long French studies in October 2015 and arrive in Cameroon around Christmas in 2016.

What kind of ministry will you be doing in Cameroon?

I will be engaging in pastoral training and discipleship among the Bakoum people in the east region of Cameroon. My primary focus will be life-on-life, relational discipleship based on close friendships with Bakoum church leaders, teaching them how to follow Christ in their homes and churches. I will also train on various topics in periodic, organized settings. The goal of this strategy is to the the Bakoum church built up in love, holiness, and unity, beginning with its leaders.

How do you know that you are called to Cameroon?

The Lord has led me to seek ministry in Cameroon in very practical, down-to-earth ways. I haven't received a special revelation from God telling me that Cameroon is where I should serve. No writing in the sky, no person with a "word from the Lord", not even a particular passion for Cameroon or the Bakoum people. Instead, I was led to ministry in Cameroon when at my home church I met my ministry partners Dave and Stacey Hare, who were already pursuing Bible translation in Cameroon through World Team. When we realized that their passion for translation and my passion for discipleship complimented each other well, a partnership was born! Then I joined World Team and was appointed to serve with them in Cameroon.

Why go to Africa? Why not serve God here in America?

The gospel of Jesus Christ is a message for people from every tribe, tongue, and nation of the earth. In the end, every single people group on the earth will join in harmonious worship of the Lord Jesus Christ around his glorious throne (Rev 5:9, 7:10). The gospel message contains the power of God to save sinners from every one of these tribes, but they can only respond to it in faith and repentance, and thus be saved, if someone shares it with them (Rom 1:16, 10:14-15). Furthermore, just before he ascended to heaven and took his rightful place at the right hand of God the Father, the Lord Jesus commissioned his people to go to all nations and teach them to observe all that he has commanded (Matt 28:18-20). Salvation is God's work, but it has pleased him to carry out his work through his people, and he does this by equipping us to serve in various capacities. I feel that the Lord has given me the skills, knowledge, abilities, and gifts to serve him effectively in Cameroon. And most of all, he has given me the desire to serve there! The Christian's joy and the glory of God are inseparable. In the words of John Piper, "God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him." Serving in Cameroon what I want to do. I don't want to stay in America. I am willing and able to go Africa. God certainly fashions lots of his children to spend their lives serving in America, but not me. I feel like he's fashioned me to serve in Cameroon. It's that simple, really.

Why not serve with the International Mission Board?

The IMB requires about 20 credit hours of Master's level schooling. I studied at Boyce College for 5.5 years and, due to financial constrains and a commitment to not accumulate debt with school loans, I was able to earn about half of a Bachelor's degree. After all that time studying, I still have nowhere near the amount of credit hours the IMB requires to serve as a career missionary. However, World Team requires no degree to serve as a missionary. I've completed their educational requirements, which were tailored to my calling and place of service, and so my time in a classroom is finished. When I began my studies to prepare for the mission field, I originally planned to serve through the IMB; but God had other plans.

1 comment:

  1. Praying for you brother. I know you have a heart for missions, especially the people of Cameroon. You have had this desire for a while now. Please keep me updated Richie. God bless.