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A Missionary's Journal
By Dr. Mary Craig
I donít really keep a journal. Itís mostly "in my head." But as I sit here thinking about the mission trip into Australia/New Zealand, my thoughts run to the importance of hearing the Lordís voice and obeying it.
Many years ago now, we started doing spiritual warfare over cities. Then it extended to the USA and then to nations around the world and now to the continents. Australia was the fourth continent called to repentance and resurrection for Jesus Christ and the 42nd nation where MCM mission teams have ministered.
On these trips, the Christian life is just daily. It isnít always until team members return home that we all begin to see the many ways in which God was there. For example, every day we would come into a new place, a new city, and someone would comment that that day was the first day of sunshine since November. However, when we went to Ayers Rock, a desert region in central Australia, it began to rain shortly after we prayed at this huge monolith, declaring Jesus Christ to be The Rock and only Savior and Source, the only Creator, and speaking for water to come forth from that Rock.
Marcia Murray, who traveled with me, noticed how friendly the people are in New Zealand and how much they care for their animals. She noted that during a sheep demonstration, the guide covered the ears of one little sheep destined to become meat for someone. The people generally were very good to their animals, as was obvious by the wagging tails and happy eyes of working dogs. We saw only one case of animal neglect, at Pencarrowís Lodge in Eastbourne, on the Storm Coast, a case we reported.
Marcy felt her prior obediences to the Lord led to her being able to go on this trip. She had offered herself to the Lord and to us to be airport transportation for other teams, and now the Lord made a way for her to go herself. Also, she had prayed for many other nations and teams as part of the "home front" and had recently become the Co-ordinator for Warriors of the Word, the prayer support for the ministryís organizational needs.
From the first leg of the air travel, God put us with other believers. People would be drawn to us. One woman approached us in the airport at Ayers Rock because she saw Marcy reading a biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. That led to a wonderful time of fellowship and spiritual encouragement. On the last leg of our journey, I sat between two young believers and was able to encourage them in their walk with the Lord. God is good to bring times of refreshing to each of us just when we need it.
We ended up in Sydney, Australia, just in time for their Australia Day celebrations. We were able to see a fabulous fire works display at Sydney Harbor, a grand conclusion to our trip before heading home. There, the Holy Spirit gave me the following concerning Australia:
Repent, for I am coming to you in judgment for defiling the name of My Son, for scorning the shepherds of My people, for worshipping idols. For you have heard but do not heed. You have seen but do not look. Your hearts are hard.
Cry for the sins. Call out, but you will not. Thousands in the valley of decision, yet I do not know them. Neither do they desire Me.
I have My own in this land, those who remain faithful to My Word, to Me. These I will protect in the day of judgment. These I will hide from My wrath.
Honor the Blood, for it is your hope. They celebrate liberty, but they are bound. They shoot off fire but fear not the fires of hell. They look up but not to Me. I see what they do. And they shall see what I will do. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken it.
If Australia was about the Rock, New Zealand was about a spirit of blindness. New Zealand has such a glorious climate and, from what I could see, no natural predators. The people care deeply about the land and each other for the most part. Marcy and I remarked at the fact that the peopleís faces showed no anxiety and little fear. Yet it reminded me of Revelation where some did not see their true condition spiritually. As I prayed in New Zealand, the Holy Spirit just kept mentioning their blindness.
All this just told me to keep humble before the Lord and to seek His face and His righteousness. We need His perspective on the events of our lives and history. He is the Rock of our salvation. As our foundation stone, He will not erode over time and we will find safety in the crags. We must love truth at all costs so as to see our true condition. This means coming again and again to the Word of God and to prayer. It also means loving one another, living in community so we donít get isolated and get off track in our thoughts. We need to see that God in His love sends sunshine and rain upon the just and the unjust because He is a merciful and gracious God even to the evil and unthankful. He doesnít lower His standards but maintains His own personal integrity. We need to do the same.
There are a lot of good things coming out of Australia and New Zealand. It will be interesting to see what God does. And God was even looking ahead to the Antarctica Expedition we have planned for the end of this year. We were able to talk with people who had traveled there and had insight concerning such an endeavor and we went to an Antarctica Museum in Christchurch, NZ. Antarctica will be the last continent to be called in, as March will have Betty Patten and I traveling to Singapore to minister in Asia.
The Lord listens to the cries of His people. He sends His messengers everywhere, for we are called to go, in His Name, by His grace, for His glory.
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