New Year, New Nation, New Church Plant

One cool spring morning this March in Nashville, TN, I sat at water’s edge at Radnor Lake (think Walden Pond).  This was the spot I spent hundreds of hours seeking the Lord as a new Christian.  As I prayed about a transition Cindy and I knew was approaching, I heard a “still small voice” repeating over and over Penang, Malaysia.  Was the Lord leading us to Malaysia? Time would tell I thought.

To be honest, I knew very little of Penang, Malaysia.  What I did know was Penang is an island off the coast of Malaysia, it’s the birth place of Cindy’s father, Hokkien is spoken there (a dialect of Chinese Cindy speaks fluently), it’s EXACTLY 180 degrees from my birthplace Cleveland, OH (see Google Earth) and is home to a new Every Nation church plant.

As we continued to seek the Lord about the future, many more signs began to lead us to Malaysia.  We knew by June 10 our VISA’s would expire, we would need to move out from our rental home which was put on the market, our two congregations in Auckland would be combined into one for a season and we would be on an airplane to Malaysia for Cindy’s sister’s June wedding.  Then a van was leased for us and a house made available to us in Kuala Lumpur for free .

To make a long story short, our family has just spent the last 4 weeks in Penang “scouting out the land” and we know the Lord has truly called us to help plant a church in this amazing place.

In the last four weeks, we fell in love with Pastor Jojo and Ida Henson and family from Manila (planting their 5th church), the ethnic diversity of Penang (45% Chinese, 40% Muslim Malay, 10% Indian, 5% others) and we saw an amazing harvest field woefully short of laborers.  The Lord had made His will so clear it was impossible to say no.  So we said “Here we are Lord, send us!”

But without you, our church planting work with Every Nation would not be possible.  Your prayer and partnership is literally planting a church in a Muslim nation that desperately needs the light of Jesus to shine.  So we say to you also, “Here we are (in Malaysia), send us”.

Thanks so much for standing with us in the this time of transition.  We could not imagine life without friends like you.  You are so so important to our family.  We love you and God bless you and your family!

Posted on by John in Uncategorized