What is the value of working together in an international fellowship?
We get a glimpse into the significance of the IFES global network for students when we look at the work of IFES staff. In every part of the world, they demonstrate how global partnership enables students to live whole-heartedly for Jesus, impacting the church and the world for Christ. This is a Great Commission vision of making disciples of all nations. And it’s a vision that is so much more compelling and God-glorifying when it’s for all nations than when it remains within our own borders. Isn’t there more power and wonder in the vision of a Saviour’s purposes that can be transposed onto rainforests and slums and suburbs, across oceans and barbed wire?
Lena Welch, our new Head of Global Resource Ministries, perfectly exemplifies this. The IFES Global Ministries exist to help all movements learn from each other as they grow in Scripture engagement, governance development, raising indigenous support, and other key areas vital to the health of national student ministries. This repertoire of needs and solutions will only grow as Lena listens to our movements and responds with new ways for the IFES global network to equip them in the future. The resources of the global fellowship are pooled and redistributed, so that the whole fellowship can be built up together.
Staff like Duncan Chiyani provide support on the ground. Duncan has supported the repioneering of movements in eSwatini and Angola, and has provided vital help for leaders elsewhere in southern Africa. He hopes to see a movement re-established in Namibia in the next two years. He also leads a team dedicated to Scripture Engagement in all 24 IFES movements in English- and Portuguese-speaking Africa. The collaboration of national movements which Duncan facilitates allows the work of student ministry both to break out to new places and put down roots in Scripture.
Duncan’s work with the southern African movements shows how the IFES fellowship helps facilitate new growth. It’s something from which an initiative like Revive Europe can emerge. Revive is more than simply a regional conference – it’s a cry to God for a transformation of the student generation in Europe. Sarah Breuel and her team are empowering students to pray a straightforward, simple, very big prayer for revival. In all its colour and fervour, Revive builds on the existing network of IFES movements to lift this cry for an outpouring of eternal life to God.
Global vision provides greater impact than a singular, mono-cultural approach. The international fellowship and the staff which serve within it allows movements to build one another up spiritually and practically, and every corner of the world has something essential to give.
Pray with us this week for IFES staff and their work for the IFES global network:
- Pray that IFES would serve national movements well, and that the perspective of each movement would be heard and valued through good communication.
- Pray that new God-glorifying initiatives will continue to be created through the coordination of IFES staff.
- Pray that each year more and more students in every movement would give their lives to Jesus.