Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Walter Jespersen's Obituary, Seattle Times

Walter Jespersen, 100, passed away July 15, 2013. He was born March 12, 1913 in Stony Plain, Alberta, Canada. He resided in the Seattle area since 1954. He spent his life loving and serving his Lord. Although born to a farm family and loving the farm, he heard the call of God on his life and went to China as a missionary where he met and married his wife Helen Cope. They served together in China with the China Inland Mission and then on the home staff of the CIM/Overseas Missionary Fellowship representing the Mission in the Pacific Northwest. In retirement they served in local churches counseling, teaching and leading home Bible studies. He was known for his infectious smile and positive outlook.

He was preceded in death by his wife Helen and by five brothers and three sisters. He is survived by his brother Ralph (Bernice) and his children, Margaret (Doug), Carol (Terry), Linda (Nelson), Dave (Rona), Steve (Jean), 15 grandchildren and 36 great grandchildren.

His Memorial Service will be at Westminster Chapel, Bellevue at
2:00 pm, August 3. In Lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Mission organizations served by his children and grandchildren. Action International Ministries, Gospel Mission of South America, SIM, and Grow International Ministries.

Published in The Seattle Times on July 28, 2013

Invaluable Ministry – Administrative Assistants

What would we ever do without ministry assistants, those who help behind the scenes in running a ministry to the glory of God? Recently I’ve been under pressure in keeping up with correspondence, appointments, writing, as well as helping plan a memorial service for my dear father-in-law, Walter Jespersen. I have still been able to dictate emails and letters since I take my dictaphone with me most everywhere (such as today in the car and also on my mile walk).  My ministry assistants have been an invaluable help with correspondence and other tasks, which not only assists our family but also an invaluable ministry continuation worldwide to the glory of God.

I would desire all leaders to trust God for such team members to assist in ministry that the work of the Lord will continue despite our inabilities, inadequacies and lack of time

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Missionaries or Nationals – Not Either/Or, but Both/And

This is God’s world and too often we divide ourselves by countries or borders.   We say, “Let the Indians take care of themselves.” Or the Africans. Or the Filipinos. Or the Cambodians. “Let them reach their own countries.”  The problem is there are three billion people who have no Christian neighbor to bring the gospel to them. Someone has to leave their own country, village, or town and cross a border to share the gospel.

We need to send missionaries and support nationals.  In India, the most unreached area of the world, we can support nationals, but there are not enough Christian nationals! We need to pray that God will raise up workers from whatever culture at whatever cost to send missionaries to India, Malawi, Uganda, and the Philippines, which now has 100 million people with only 10% being evangelical!

Making money the issue is sinful disobedience and foolishness. It may be cheaper to support a national, but that does not excuse us from the responsibility of going into all the world. Churches worldwide should ask God to raise up workers from among them, in addition to supporting nationals who do not have the means for local support.  It is not either/or, but both/and. We must reach people around us as well as those beyond us with the glorious gospel of Christ.

So, throw away the “support nationals only” books, look at Scripture, and ask two questions:  What Filipino, Cambodian, or Indian would God have me support, and also ask, who in our local church should we trust the Lord to send out with the glorious gospel of salvation in Christ alone?

Let’s not just send our dollars but also in obedience, send our sons and daughters.

Money is not the issue, but obedience!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Retiring from ACTION, but Not from Full-time Ministry

This is to announce that, after much thought and prayer (especially over the last eight years), the Lord has led Margaret and me into a season of transition in our senior years toward a new venture in missions.

I stepped out of the International Director’s position of ACTION six years ago, ACTION leadership is in place on all fields, and we have moved out of all leadership responsibilities. It is, therefore, the Lord’s time for us to phase out of ministry (retire from ministry with ACTION) to a larger international missions outreach beginning this year October 1.

We will devote ourselves fulltime (in our senior years) to be Global Missions Advocates/Facilitators to represent “missions in general” to the evangelical church worldwide. We will continue to work in ministering to the “Diaspora,” pastoral leadership development, mentoring of leadership in missions, and as advocates for street children and orphans.

We will also continue to serve with key ministries and missions in these areas — ministries we have helped build and/or networked with for many years: Christian Growth Ministries (Philippines), Filipino International Network, Global Diaspora Network, Trainers of Pastors International Coalition (to untrained pastors), Grow International Ministries, and others.

 Our sponsoring “service” mission agency will be Commission to Every Nation (CTEN USA and Canada), a “networking and service” mission working internationally with many evangelical churches, missions and ministries “to help Christians become personally involved in fulfilling the Great Commission to every nation.” As a service mission, CTEN presently handles receipting and pastoral care for 450 missionaries.

The following statement is by the ACTION International Council comprised of country directors and Board chairmen:

“We praise God for Doug and Margi Nichols and their 39 years of leadership and sacrificial service with ACTION.  Over the past few years, God has been stirring the Nichols' heart to transition and invest their gifts and mission experiences in the larger cause of worldwide outreach in general. We thank the Lord for Doug and Margi Nichol's inspirational leadership and bless them as they pursue God's leading.”                             

To emphasize again, even though we are retiring from ACTION, we are NOT retiring from full-time ministry. As the Lord leads, we would, therefore, ask that you prayerfully consider supporting Margaret and me as your “international missionaries.”

Our ministry and responsibilities are not lessening, but expanding!  As always, we still need to trust the Lord for all monthly support for our personal needs as well as ministry expenses which include support of our staff, mission travel and other ministry expense.  I will retain two of the Founder’s Office staff and continue to cover their salary from our support and ministry income, as long as we are able and there is a need.

We want to express our appreciation and care for our ACTION family and the 39 years we have served together, and trust that the mission will continue to expand as they minister worldwide.

" . . . for a wide door for effective service has opened to [us], and there are many adversaries . . . Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men [be mature], be strong.  Let all that you do be done in love" (1 Corinthians 16:9, 13-14, nasb).

Thank you for your prayer for Margaret and me as we continue to move forward in faith in our senior years with the gospel, discipleship, and compassion to the masses of the world.

Sincerely in Christ (and still serving fulltime in ministry),
Doug (and Margaret) Nichols
Global Missions Advocate/Facilitator & ACTION Founder

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Is the day of sending missionaries over?

The answer to this question is, “Absolutely not!”

There is an estimated 3 billion without a Christian nearby to tell them the gospel.  If you divided this 3 billion into groups of 5000, this would mean a need of 600,000 more missionaries!

Even the small mission that I work with, which works in twenty-six countries with 265 missionaries, has an urgent need for many additional missionaries: ministry to Seafarers; workers on the streets taking the gospel and compassion to street children, prostitutes and other children in crisis; vocational instructors for street children and prisoners; teachers in schools for missionary children; workers in prisons; mentors for needy pastors; book publication and much more.

So, perhaps you would pray about the possibility of taking the gospel to those who have never heard (or repeat it to those who have heard!).

Doug Nichols
Global Missions Advocate/Facilitator & ACTION Founder

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

It's All Good!

Walter Jespersen's (March 12, 1913-July 15, 2013) memorial service is scheduled Saturday, August 3 at 2 pm at Westminster Chapel, 13646 NE 24th Street, Bellevue, WA  98005.

Dad's favorite saying was "The best is still ahead!"  Well, for him, it has now arrived, and in Heaven it is all good, yes, very good!