Equipping leaders from around the world

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I still remember it was April 20th, 2015 in a small meeting room at Lake Hart (Cru’s global HQ in Orlando) where a few of us were in a planning meeting.

We were asking the question… ‘how can we guide our global movement towards digital maturity, so that we can adequately serve 10 million multiplying disciples by year 2020?’

The idea for ‘Digital School of Leadership‘ was hatched that day!

God was already orchestrating this move, and we had the privilege to play a part to shape what would become the curriculum to equip our leaders and volunteers to think, engage and maximize digital strategies to build His kingdom.

We launched this whole idea in January 2016, and in less than 18 months, we’ve seen 319 global leaders and volunteers complete Digital School of Leadership (DSL). Lillian and I have been part of 3 gatherings (all in Asia), while others in Latin America, the Middle East, Europe etc. have been going on this past year. Here are some snapshots.

Here are some snapshots….

DSL Asia in Pattaya (with participants from Mongolia, China, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Korea, Indonesia, Philippines)

Participants from Taiwan ‘multiplied’ themselves quickly! Right after they returned from DSL Asia, they conducted another training for their counterparts!

DSL South Asia, in Bangalore (with participants from India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka)

While I was training our South Asian brothers and sisters last February, I remember sitting in the classroom being so thrilled… watching them learn and explore the possibilities of leveraging all sorts of digital tools and platforms to reach the multitudes in India. My heart welled up with gratefulness to the Lord for all that he’s done! And to think that I got to play a part in making all this happen is just so beyond me.

And to think that I got to play a part in making all this happen is just so beyond me. Thank you, Jesus, for counting me in this great adventure of Yours!  =)

DSL Eastern Europe – the most recent training that just concluded this week. To date, 319 leaders and volunteers around the world have been equipped as digital missionaries and ‘champions’

The Great Adventure Update – December 2016

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We left Orlando (our home for the past 5 years) in July and moved back to Singapore. Many of you have asked us how we are doing and how our transition has been. Thank you! Considering that it’s a major change for us, especially for the children, we thank God that it has been generally smooth. Sometimes we feel like we are still trying to catch up with life…

Here’s a snapshot of the past few months since we returned:

  • stayed for a month at friends’ home
  • our flat was renovated in a record 6 days!
  • we started homeschooling (again)
  • moved to a new church plant to help start the work
  • attended a re-entry retreat that was so good for our souls
  • started a new cell group
  • Lil’s mom came to live with us
  • Lil joined Simon’s team (Global Digital Strategies) and is also serving the Cru Singapore digital strategies team
  • Simon continues his role in the global team, and is also mentoring and coaching leaders in Singapore
Our Financial Needs

As many of you know, we raise 100% of our salary. Without faithful partners praying and giving, we won’t be able to do what we do. In the coming year, we need to raise for a shortfall of $3000 in monthly support, and an additional $15,000 for the upcoming US staff conference in July ‘17. We desire end 2016 and begin 2017 with strong financial support. If God has blessed you, would you consider giving a special Christmas gift of any amount to help meet our needs? Please take a few minutes to pray that God would provide for us and ask Him what part He may desire you to play.  

Here’s more info on how you can partner with us –  give.seow.cc 

We consider it a great privilege to share our prayer needs as well as our financial needs with you. However the Lord may lead you to respond, we are grateful and take joy in knowing you are standing with us for the gospel.

Your partners in His service,

Simon & Lillian Seow

(Staff with Cru Singapore)

Digital strategies and tools that are impacting lives

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She was 5 weeks pregnant and desperate. Her partner kept pressurizing her to abort the baby. Depressed, she searched online for help and found ‘Boiling Waters’, a FaceBook page set up by a few brothers in our Philippines’ ministry. She was touched by the  inspirational posts and  started chatting with one of our staff. It led quickly to a spiritual conversation. She was then invited to watch ‘FallingPlates’ – a powerful 4-min gospel short-film by our team, that has been watched by millions on YouTube. In tears, touched by God’s unconditional love for her, she received Christ and said she will not abort the baby.  Praise God!  This is just one of many stories of lives being impacted and ministered to as a result of this unique FaceBook page strategy.

In tears, touched by God’s unconditional love for her, she received Christ and said she will not abort the baby.  Praise God!

One of the effective tools our team has worked on is GodTools. It now has 50+ language versions of the Four Spiritual Laws. Coupled with other useful tools, it helps any follower of Christ communicate the gospel simply but clearly. Recently updated, it has been used in 198 nations, daily usage has increased by 500%. In an unnamed country in the Middle-East (which has little to almost no missionary presence), it is used an average of 199 times a month. The Lord is moving in a powerful way, to help our Arab friends discover and use it to either learn or share the gospel (even in a ‘closed’ country!)  

We’re thankful for partners like you! Because of you, we are able to make headway into the digital world, impacting the lives of people who are desperate and lost, yearning and seeking to discover true hope in Jesus.

We want to invite you to be part of this great adventure with us! Learn more about our current needs, and the opportunities to be partners in the gospel!

 

Read our 2016 Year-End Newsletter

They leave everything behind….but their mobile phones

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syrian refugees

Image source: REUTERS

For the refugees, these smart devices are not playthings, but a vital lifeline to their family back home, to receive updated information, and get connected to important resources for their journey. Our Digital Strategies teams (in the Middle-East and Europe) are working hard on providing wifi and mobile hotspots to help them. And also to give them access to Arabic bibles and the Jesus Film to help them discover true hope and peace.

“These people have never heard the gospel. Don’t be sorry for them. Because of ISIS, thousands are hearing the gospel for the first time, and coming to Jesus.”

– a member in the Middle-East

Would you PRAY for this important strategy that will see many coming to Jesus? We know that the Lord loves these people dearly, and desire for them to come to Him. Cry out to Jesus on their behalf!

He made my day

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Oomen the driverMe to the driver: Sorry to trouble you that you have to stay up so late to take me to the airport (my flight leaves 330am).

Oomen: ‘That’s my pleasure, no…’ (said with the classic Indian head shake, and coupled with BIG smile on his face!)

How the simple things in life can bring you simple (but very tangible) joys!

So blessed by the authentic ways of this man.

After I took this picture, he said to me… ‘When you remember me, pray for me and my two kids +1 and +2’ (he meant his 1 and 2 years old who are in Kerala).

‘Everyday I talk to them on the phone, and every few months I get to go and visit with them.’

A glimpse of God’s mysterious ways

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God often works even when we don’t see it. Every once in a while, we get a glimpse of it, and tonight was one of those nights. 🙂

7 people came for our meet-up this evening. One guy, Anil shared that Indigitous Bangalore (which I helped organized this February) helped inspire and clarify for him the desire to start his own media company! His company is distinctively mission-minded, with the desire to create short clips that lead to spiritual conversations.

The girl in the middle, Deepti, who works in IBM marketing & communications, started a blog ‘WonderCatcher‘ specifically targeted at reaching the lost, communicating hope and love to a hopeless world.

By God’s grace, Indigitous has had an impact on them, and they continue to take steps of faith, in their desire to be used by Him.

The movement keeps growing! So cool for me to get a inside glimpse of God at work!

Thanks for praying for my time here in India!

Multiplying Disciples in Digital Strategies

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Growing up in an African nation where Christians face persecution for their beliefs, Teresa felt isolated as a new follower of Jesus. She wanted to grow in her walk with Christ but didn’t have anyone to talk to about it; she felt a call to spread the gospel but didn’t know how. Where she lives, there are no printed Bibles and no churches, and any believers who meet together must do so discreetly and in small groups. Despite those challenges, Teresa felt called to share the love of Jesus with her community.

Because it’s unsafe to discuss such topichabeshastudent screenshots openly, Teresa turned to the internet in her quest for answers. While searching for material on spiritual growth, Teresa found HabeshaStudent.com, the Amharic version of EveryStudent.com. She began emailing the volunteers and staff who provide support to the website. Her primary concern was finding a way to share the gospel without having access to a printed Bible. Efrem, an Indigitous volunteer with HabeshaStudent, introduced her to an Amharic Bible app for feature phones that he developed during an Indigitous event in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. She excitedly took this app and used it to share the gospel with her friends and family.

Teresa is especially concerned about helping her family members to know Jesus. “If I don’t share the gospel with them, who will?” she asked. Upon her urging, Teresa’s family has started reading one chapter of the Bible every time they meet. Her prayer is that her family will come to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior.

Teresa has also started leading a Bible study group out of her home, though it is unsafe to meet in groups of larger than three or four. Teresa is passionate about evangelism, knowing what is at stake. “Whenever I think about eternity, I get shivers,” she says. “I believe that it is not good that our brothers and sisters go into eternal death as a result of not knowing the truth.”

Teresa’s biggest need is evangelistic materials that fit her context. She is grateful that due to digital strategies, she is able to get the help that she could not get locally. “Nobody around me was able to give me advice on how I could serve and do ministry, but even if you are 1,000 kilometers from me, God used you to equip me for this work.”

reblogged from Global Leadership site

 

Completely Undeserved

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‘Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”

And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more” – John 8,7,10-11

The woman knew she deserved to be punished. She expected death. Yet, Jesus – full of mercy – spoke in a very unexpected way, and extended grace to her, much to the surpass of the people watching. (If we were in the crowd, we probably wouldn’t understand it as well). Grace was clearly given where none was deserved.

 

Grace undesrved

 

Do I really understand grace?  Do I really know that it’s completely undeserved? 

Grace cannot be earned. Yet, if I’m completely honest, I often live my life as if to earn it, to ‘prove’ that I deserve His grace… either through my behavior, my commitment and service, or my hard work. Or even worse, through my so-called acts of righteousness.

What have I done that has given me the right to be His child, to be fully accepted by Him, and now to have the awesome and crazy privilege of serving Him full-time? Nothing! 

I don’t deserve it, but I am a grateful, a very grateful recipient of His abundant grace in my life.

I know I desperately need to be anchored on this precious truth. 

Divine appointments in Korea and Manila

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You prayed, God heard and moved. I definitely felt very supported.
My time in Korea and Manila was really fruitful. God not only accomplished what He desired to accomplish, in the strategic stuff, but also opened up several doors for me to for personal ministry. All in all I believe I spent personal time with about 10 staff, including 2 couples. Half of them were really ‘divine appointments’ – something only the Lord could have orchestrated. One guy told me later that he really appreciated me taking time to listen and pray for him. (I only met this staff one other time, 2 years ago). He shared that it was totally unexpected, but desperately needed, and such a God-gift!  I feel completely undeserved, but so blessed that I can be part of God’s plan. =)
10 days in 2 cities, I engaged with various global leaders, and had opportunities to encourage, coach, mentor, train, teach, cast vision, and more. It was a really enjoyable!
God surely exceeded my expectations! (and to think at first I honestly hesitated about the trip because of various reasons) =)
Filipino bros Korean brothers Pakistan NTL KyungSoo DS Vincent & Christine Taiwanese brother