A couple of people have commented to me about the discouraging fact that "this is a horrible time for a missionary to start deputation." On the contrary, I can't think of a better time; because right now, I am not trusting in the affluence of the churches, but in the supernatural provision of God.
I have been amazed at several of the churches we have been in while on deputation during this recession. On more than one occasion, churches that have had several of their men lose jobs increased their faith promise commitments by substantial amounts. One church in South Carolina- a church of about 300- jumped from committing $130,000.00 per year to over $200,000.00 this year! "Well, they are probably a very wealthy church to do that," one might say. But this church is feeling the brunt of the economic downturn as much as any. But praise the Lord, the Holy Spirit worked during the missions conference, and the people responded in faith. I believe, according to Philippians 4, that this church is going to be just fine during this economic crisis. Why? Because they are functioning according to God's economy, not our governments economy.
Over these first two months of deputation, God has given us over 20% of our support. He has provided for our every need. He has allowed us to be in some of the best-spirited missions conferences I have every had the privilege of being in.
I have been so encouraged by the faith of God's people. I pray that churches all over America will see this economic downturn as an opportunity to see God keep His promises. We have stepped out by faith to begin deputation at this time, and to go to Cambodia with the Gospel. I pray that pastors and Christians all over America will step out by faith as well, and not take a step backwards in the area of missions, but a step of faith forward. May we learn to function according to God's economy. The number one requirement to succeed in God's economy is faith.