The "God loves me more than anyone else" attitude is ancient. It is first cousin to the attitude, "God cannot love you because He loves me." God is best understood through love (1 John 4:8). Is it not astounding to hear someone committed to God express lovelessness for other people?

Among the numerous active groups who bless this congregation is our missions committee. It is large, very active, and loves people. Their love of Christ is evident in their love for people.

They help many in a variety of circumstances. They maintain continuing, coordinated commitments to Laos, Thailand, Nigeria, Ethiopia, and Guyana. They maintain involved interests in Romania and New Zealand. This year a group plans to begin active involvement in the City of Children in Mexico.

Our missions committee plans and coordinates most of West-Ark's missions outreach. Several on the committee make short-term mission trips. Some finance their own efforts. All of them are generous and committed. When we are involved in a mission effort, they (a) stay informed, (b) supply meaningful help, and (c) have someone visit.

Our missions involvement takes many forms: evangelistic teaching; preparation of missionaries; training and supporting nationals on the field; assisting the Ethiopian deaf work; ministering to Ethiopia's drought crisis; providing moral support and spiritual encouragement to Christians in difficult circumstances; medical missions; and working with C.U.R.E. (one of our ministries) to provide medical supplies.

Since 1990 a team travels to Guyana each year to combine four intensive efforts in a week's work: (a) provide desperately needed medical treatment; (b) through that expression of physical concern create evangelistic opportunities; (c) teach in the schools; and (c) conduct evening gospel meetings in several congregations. Over one hundred members of this congregation have participated in that effort.

The weekend of November 12 will be devoted to missions awareness. In the morning assembly of the 12th, a special contribution will be collected. The purpose: to fund much of the committee's budget for 2001. The committee will soon share with us the amount needed for the 2001 budget. In the past the congregation has given or pledged from $110,000 to $140,000 in support of the coming year's work.

May we each think, plan, and pray about the help we will provide that Sunday. Someone recently asked about the significance of the flags in a corridor in our building. They represent the countries that have received teaching or help from West-Ark.

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 15 October 2000

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