Last month the Simply Mobilizing International Center, in Butuan City, Philippines, hosted the 2019 Global Development Consultation. This gathering included 48 Simply Mobilizing leaders from 12 global regions around the world. Colleen and myself (Joshua) represented the USA as part of the North America global region. Butuan is where the Kairos course was dreamed up and developed many years ago, and it’s where the Simply Mobilizing headquarters still is. Working so closely with the Kairos course for almost ten years now, I’d always wanted to visit its birthplace and it was great to finally get a chance to do that.
We were blessed to be in the company of such a passionate and committed group of mobilizers each striving in their part of the world to ignite the church in pursuit and engagement of God’s mission. We spent the week reporting on and celebrating progress in our regions, discussing and troubleshooting challenges, and planning ahead for the next phase of progress regionally and globally. 2020 will be the next big international conference for Simply Mobilizing and this consultation was a strategic time for us to work as a global team as well as solidify goals for our specific regions and countries.
One tremendous highlight was hearing these regional progress reports and seeing how God was at work everywhere, even in some of the most challenging places. One region where Simply Mobilizing has seen some of the most amazing growth is also where the church is experiencing some extreme persecution. We were humbled and awed as the coordinator shared with us a message from that region, asking that we not pray for the persecution to stop, but simply that they would continue to be faithful.
It was a really exciting time and an incredible group of people to fellowship and strategize with. It can be easy, even in our modern globalized world, to fall back on an old mindset of mission being an effort of the western church to the rest of the world. However, it’s in settings like this that I’m reminded, humbled, and encouraged by the amazing way God is at work through an endlessly passionate, highly skilled, and deeply devoted global workforce partnering together for His mission purpose.