Just recently we held a Zonal Conference in New Zealand for Army leaders in the South Pacific and East Asia area. The most internationally diverse of all the zones, I looked out on officers representing Salvationists in Korea, Japan, The Philippines, Taiwan, Papua New Guinea, Australia, Singapore, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Fiji, Tonga, Mongolia, Solomon Islands, Indonesia, Hong Kong and Macau.
Yet we have to see this international Army with our spiritual sight. We talked a lot about our different cultures, wore different uniforms, needed translation to understand and to be understood, and gave witness to our own unique backgrounds. Yet here we were, Salvationists from all over the world, proclaiming the name of Jesus, kneeling together in prayer, serving with hearts for the lost, desiring to be the people God raised us up to be and committed to fulfilling his mission. We were one.
I have no idea of the particular situation of everyone who receives this letter and I certainly don’t have personal knowledge of where you worship. But I know I am writing to a majority of Salvationists. When I share this global vision, I am conscious that it must also work on a personal and local level. Diversity is great. Division is tragic. Uniformity is impossible. Unity is a gift.
So wherever you find yourself today, may your eyes be wide open to what you, and your corps, can do when we move forward together into the world of the hurting, broken, lonely, dispossessed and lost, reaching them in love by all means, with the transforming message of Jesus, bringing freedom, hope and life.
God bless you richly,