Nicaragua (MNN/GAM) — God is working in Nicaragua. At a recent conference held by Global Advance, over 700 pastors and leaders representing churches throughout the entire country and other surrounding nations received a powerful touch of hope, encouragement, and vision for fulfilling the great commission.
At this Frontline Shepherds Conference, each leader recommitted their lives to serving God and reaching their communities with the hope of the Gospel.
David Shibley of Global Advance says of recent years, “The Government seems to have taken a more moderate posture, and this has allowed the church to become more vigorous and grow, even though sometimes there are some disagreements and confrontations.”
As a result, the country is revitalized with a passion to do God’s work and a strong vision for missions. Shibley says, “I was particularly impressed with the quality of the pastors, their ardent love for Christ. But so many of them have been discouraged in their work. As a matter of fact, over the last couple of years we have picked up on this: worldwide, a phenomenon of many, many pastors who are ready to leave the ministry and often our conferences at Global Advance are kind of the last stop on the train for them.”
Shibley explains why there is discouragement even in the midst of success. “When the church does become strong and begins to grow both numerically and consequently in influence, there is a backlash, and the enemy sees to that.”
The conference combats this by refocusing and providing a reminder of the hope we have in Jesus Christ. “The Lord meets with them in a special way, their vision is refreshed and renewed, they leave with strong tools for better equipping the Body of Christ, and they do go away–as we’ve said for years–with a vision in their hearts and tools in their hands.”
The conference also explains that churches can grow in any area, and that as they grow numerically they will grow in influence. They emphasize evangelism, church planting, and discipleship.
“Many of these pastors still are very bereft of effective resources. So any resource that is put in their hands becomes a tremendous lifeline for many of them,” says Shibley.
A couple of days after the pastors conference, Global Advance also convened 130 business owners and marketplace leaders. Many were impacted with fresh truth related to their role in the marketplace. Numerous people proclaimed they see their work in a new light. Marketplace leaders committed their work to God and are aiming to disciple others in the business community. All of this will build strength, dignity, and righteous prosperity to the nation of Nicaragua.
As part of their continued investment in the indigenous leaders of this nation, Global Advance will also be sponsoring a Marketplace Missions training event at the conclusion of the Frontline Pastors training. Many of the churches represented at the Frontline Pastors training sent their business people to receive further training and consulting. This was a great opportunity to see local churches and businesses resourced for growth, giving them a better chance to become self-sustainable.
Please pray for Global Advance’s upcoming Esther Project event for Women Leaders in Nicaragua. This event is scheduled for April 2014.
Shibley shares another way to be praying: “A very specific request would be that the Christian business persons in Nicaragua would rise to the challenge and begin to strengthen economically the churches and ministries with whom they are associated.”