An Agreement. A Handshake. Rapprochement.
Rapprochement: “Establishing or resuming harmonious relations between church administrators and mission agencies.“
A Story. One day St. Paul visited the church leaders in Jerusalem (You can read this story here.) They met to discuss great problems (if “discuss” is the right word for a thunderstorm). They talked till they reached an understanding of considerable significance for us today. They agreed there should be two administrations for Christians. Church leaders would administrate the structures that we normally call churches. Missionaries would administrate the spread of the Christian message among non-Christian peoples in “the regions beyond.” Then they shook hands with one another, having recognized two structures of God’s redemptive mission, one to govern the administration of churches, the other governing the missionaries. My entire mission in this series of blogs is to persuade church and mission agency administrators to shake hands and resolve the problem this same way. A thaw in the relationship is what I hope to see happen.
A Handshake. Perhaps ten times as many missionaries could be prepared to go to the regions beyond, if church administrators and mission agencies can shake hands, as they did in the story above. If you can think of anything more important than that you will have to tell me.
Rapprochement: So valuable is this rapprochement between church administrators and mission agencies that I am giving the rest of my life to help repair the breach. Dr. Ralph D. Winter (1924-2009) wrote a superb article, “Two Structures of God’s Redemptive Mission.” Winter explained the biblical basis of mission agencies and the history of the relationship between mission agencies and churches. He left it to a few of us to help church leaders and mission agencies resolve long-standing differences for the sake of our Lord Jesus Christ, “so that we might glorify God by completing the work He gave us to do.”