International (MNN) — Camp retreats are wrapping up, summer outreaches are coming to a close, and many are preparing for the dive into fall classes or change in schedules.
With the end of any phase or season, there can be less motivation to “finish strong.”
But David Shibley with Global Advance says this mindset of winding down with the summer should not affect ministry. “There is always urgency in the task of the Great Commission. There is this very tragic verse found in Jeremiah 8:20, ‘The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.’ And so even as the physical summer is coming to an end, we want to be sure that we are putting our shoulder to the plow, doing everything we can and not taking a vacation from the Great Commission.”
To carry out this initiative, Global Advance is conducting eight training events for pastors and marketplace missions from now through the end of the summer. These events will take place in regions of Africa, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.
Shibley explains why Global Advance’s pastoral training is unique. “Global Advance goes to the 92% of majority world pastors in these under-served nations of the world; the 92% who never get to go to Bible school or seminary. They’re just slugging it out the best way they know, and so we go with onsite training to them.”
The three-day pastoral training sessions equip indigenous pastors for discipleship, evangelism, church planting, and fostering community transformation through the Gospel. Global Advance also gets to know the pastors and addresses personal issues in their lives.
“In that way, we can give them a real clear track to run on,” says Shibley. “We put a vision in their hearts, by the grace of God, and tools in their hands to advance the Gospel.”
In addition, pastors are given resources to continue training after the conference is over.
Global Advance also sends successful Christian businesspeople to train leaders in the marketplace for evangelism there. According to Shibley, “[We] give them best business practices, but also that’s in a bedrock of Biblical economics and understanding that they can create businesses to be Great Commission businesses that fund the advance of the Gospel in their area of the world.”
It’s a great networking opportunity for pastors and businesspersons in their region. Over the course of the next eight training sessions, Shibley estimates they will see between 7,000-8,000 trainees. Global Advance trains an average of 30,000 pastors and businesspeople every year.
And it’s all for the spread of the message of Christ. “Over and over again, we have seen a tremendous spiritual hunger. We have seen great interest in the person of Jesus and great response to Him,” says Shibley. “That’s why we go to the wonderful contacts in many nations on every continent equipping the leaders of the church there to fulfill the Great Commission.”
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