Hearts for Mission

Popeye had probably never been on such a mission!

It was a wet and cold afternoon when one of the small but iconic fleet of recreational ferries which have carried locals, tourists and even royalty along Adelaide’s River Torrens since the 1930s, transported a group of diverse people who had two critical things in common.

While each has different skills and aptitudes, each one of the approximately 30 passengers has a heart for mission and has chosen to serve others with the gifts God has given them.

They, like many others, give of their time and talents in many different ways across Australia and overseas as volunteers with LCA International Mission.

Those on board included people who had visited LCA partner churches in Asia, perhaps sharing accounting or teaching skills to contribute to the health of a church in Cambodia or Indonesia. There were stamp cleaners and sorters for the Stamps for Mission project, who shared how a ‘task’ can become a ‘passion’. This passion resulted in more than $15,000 being raised last year to support the proclamation of the gospel.

Several congregational representatives, who help share LCA International Mission stories across Australia, also joined the tour, arranged as a thankyou to treasured volunteers. Lecturers heard from likewise unpaid workers who had helped relocate the Louise Flierl Mission Museum (see also Inside Story), learning of their enthusiasm to share our partnership history in PNG with the wider LCA.

Education advisors told stories of volunteering in Malaysia, while those who have participated in congregational partnerships, packed birthing kits and helped prepare mail-outs represented further ways people can serve with LCA International Mission.

Stephen and Natalie explained their service in West Asia for Interserve and the LCA, including adapting to a new language and culture and being part of a young church baptising those now in love with Jesus.

As I stood at the back of the boat listening, I thanked God for the joy of being with these loving, giving people. How and where we thank volunteers from across Australia may still need some thought, but the work they do and the lives they touch with their love for Jesus is simply wonderful. Of course, it is God who leads people to serve others and we thank him for volunteers whose hearts dance with his Spirit.

We are always looking for volunteers – especially for representatives to help tell mission stories in their congregations.

If you would like to consider the opportunity to serve as a volunteer in mission, serving in practical ways, teaching English, teaching in the seminaries and institutions of our partner churches, or in local churches, you are invited to phone Nevin on (08) 8267 7300 or email nevin.nitschke@lca.org.au. For more information, go to http://www.lcamission.org.au/join-gods-mission/volunteer/

Read more stories about volunteering at http://www.lcamission.org.au/category/join-gods-mission/volunteers/