Church Journeys: Wheaton Bible Church
I'm still trying to update my Sunday updates from when I am on the road preaching. Three out of four Sundays, I am at Grace Church, where I volunteer as lead pastor. However, once a month I speak for a friend somewhere on the road. Most recently, that was Wheaton Bible Church for their missions weekend.
The church is one of the two largest in Wheaton, IL, which is this weird bastion of intellectual evangelicalism in the suburbs of Chicago. (I could list a bunch of ministries there, but you get the picture—it's another Colorado Springs, Orlando, etc.).
I had a great time the night before with some of the staff, and then came the morning. Here's a view of their sanctuary.
What was most encouraging to me was the missions legacy of the congregation. I snapped a pic of some of the missionaries the prayed for that morning—from around the world.
In my message I shared some of what was in their program:
WBC supports 91 couples and singles serving in over 40 countries on 6 continents with a 1.3 million dollar annual investment.Native Americans in Ontario, Children at risk in Costa Rica Teens in Germany University students in Kazakhstan
Week in and week out, @27 cents of every dollar given at WBC goes to our mission to reach the world.
This month, WBC invested $15,000 to feed and reach out to Syrian refugees. This year, $20,000 in WBC relief assisted the persecuted church in South Asia.
This summer, we sent 4 new missionary units to Germany, Mexico, the Philippines, and Turkey. 10 young adults are participating in a "hands on" cross-cultural training program called "MOVE IN".
We invested $100,000 this year with our HOPE KENYA partners toward transforming communities together. 3 GO Teams visited Kenya in 2013.
GO Teams also supported our MOVE missionaries reaching Muslim immigrants in France and Spain in 2013.
In total in 2013, 180 youth and adults took part in 15 separate 1-2 week mission trips. Their outreach includes
They gave me an assigned text (and translation) so I went shared from:
"This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God's wonderful grace" (Colossians 1:6 NLT).
It's a great theme considering how the gospel really has gone out all over the world from their church.
From my notes:
The gospel came to you. Now, in this case it is to the Colossians, but someone founded this church—brought the gospel here.
In 1920, this church was started, but someone still brought the gospel personally to you.
Someone brought the gospel to you. But, then the expectation is that you will bring it to someone else.
Don't let Wheaton Bible church ever become a cul-de-sac on the Great Commission Highway.
"But how can they call on him to save them unless they believe in him? And how can they believe in him if they have never heard about him? And how can they hear about him unless someone tells them? And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, 'How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!' " (Romans 10:14-15).
That's how you get beautiful feet.
Totally unrelated to the theme, let me share two other observations. First, I love that they take membership seriously.
And, let's just say they know how to pick a small group resource as well!
Thanks, Wheaton Bible, for the invitation to visit and for your passion for God's global mission.