The Value of “Being With”
We recently finished the 6-week Applied Practical Leadership Course (APLC), and with great fulfillment. What a joy to come alongside the 12 participants from Thailand and Asia to give them practical tools for growing their ministry and themselves as leaders. As we prepared for this course, the Lord kept reminding us that the main priority was to just “be with” them – to come alongside, hear their stories, answer questions, and walk with them on the journey of leadership. Mark 3:13-14 reminds us that Jesus called the disciples first to just “be with” Him before He sent them out. There is great significance in taking the time to be with those who are growing in leadership, and we found that our most valuable moments in the APLC were these times.
This lesson was repeated again as I spent a week in Myanmar “being with” first the 20 national leaders from around the nation, and then the entire 120 YWAM staff volunteers. We had discussions about cross-cultural issues in leadership; listened to their greatest challenges, and conducted workshops on self-leadership. In addition, I got to lead worship together with some of the Myanmar staff. I was so inspired to hear the stories of how God is working through them, despite the enormous challenges of corruption, warfare on their borders, poverty and lack of development, to bring the hope and love of Jesus to so many! What a privilege and honor just to “be with” them!
While I was away, Cindy stayed in Bangkok to “be with” one of our Thai leaders who is expecting her first baby in a few days.
In the meantime, preparation continues for the YWAM Together 2018 global gathering on Sept. 2-8. God continues to surprise us and remind us that He has a special purpose for this event. Although we had a goal of 1,000 people registered by April 30, instead we had 2,500 people registered by that date! And there are still 4 months to go! One of the unique elements of this event is that ALL the attendees will be involved in some form of outreach in the city of Pattaya on Wednesday of that week. Just imagine 3,000 or 4,000 YWAMers spread out through the city of Pattaya giving away Bibles, worshipping, praying on the streets, reaching out to ladies in the red-light district, helping the poor, etc.! What a wonderful opportunity for Immanuel to reveal Himself as “God with us” to the people in this city!
While I focus on networking with leaders and the Thai church, Cindy is busy mobilizing 300-400 volunteers from around the globe to assist with this historical event.
On the family front, Derek is now engaged to Camille Beckingham, and they will be getting married in Thailand on July 1. We are thrilled to be getting a precious new daughter-in-law, and also thrilled that our entire family will be together for the first time in 6 years!
Please continue to pray for us as the coming months promise to be both eventful and challenging. We want to balance the family time and celebrations with the preparation for the biggest ministry event we’ve ever been involved in. This will require daily wisdom from the Lord.
You too can be involved in YWAM Together 2018! We need generous people who can:
- Sponsor a participant from a developing nation – $300.
- Donate toward the 100,000 Gospels of Luke to be distributed – $500 per 1,000
- Pray! We need lots of prayer for provision, wisdom and spiritual breakthrough!
Thank you for standing with us! You are loved and appreciated!
Phil & Cindy
P.S. NEW online donation system – As very few people write paper checks these days, we finally have an online method for donating financial support. Simply click the link at: https://giving.ywammontana.org/support/portersinthailand which will enable supporters to set up one-time or recurring donations via various methods. We are so grateful for all who continue to invest in our ministry!