At this time last year, we were all wondering when the world was going to get back to “normal.” While many things have changed this year and more changes are likely around the corner, the mission of the Church and of ITEC remains the same. Our mission is to equip indigenous Christ followers for meaningful participation in His Great Commission. We do this in three ways: developing tools and training systems for frontier areas, training indigenous Christ followers to care for physical and spiritual needs, and equipping others to do the same.
This mission is what drives us. It tells us both what to do and what not to do. When the world shut down last year, we were pushed to adapt our methods of accomplishing our mission to the new workings of the world. The command of the Great Commission did not change when the world paused. We were able to focus on equipping Indigenous Christ followers through virtual trainings when we were unable to travel to their location, as well as to participate in several in-person trainings in 2021. We also came alongside multiple new church partners and worked with them as they wrestled with how they could best participate in the Great Commission. Despite new obstacles, we continued to innovate how we serve the needs of the indigenous Church so that they will be most effective in reaching their communities with the Gospel.
We step into the new year prayerfully seeking the will of the Lord. James 4:13-15 reminds us “Now listen, all you who say, ‘Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.’ Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, ‘If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.’”
As 2022 begins, we see our primary work will be with indigenous Christ followers, churches who are wanting to refresh their mission strategies, and other mission organizations. We will continue to develop tools and trainings to empower indigenous Christ followers to reach into their communities and unreached people groups to show compassion for physical needs as a door opener to share the Gospel, and encourage those we train to utilize their newly learned skills to maximize the impact of the Gospel. We will also work with existing church partners and new potential church partners as they discuss how to have a long-term impact on short-term trips without creating dependency by utilizing these five principles: learn to listen, understand the need, build on what they have, go and train, and follow up. Working with other mission organizations can sometimes be tricky. However, while our mission focuses may differ, we will root for and encourage every organization with whom we interact as together we pursue the completion of the Great Commission.
We want to invite you to join in this mission. Please join with the growing group of those who pray for us and financially support this work. Share this mission and vision with your local church and mission-minded friends. We are excited for the year ahead and know that this will only be possible as the Lord uses all of us to pursue Him and His desire for worshipers of every tribe, nation, kindred and tongue.