Celebrate #GivingTuesday

Written by Lee Heyward on Tuesday, 01 December 2015. Posted in Blog

Celebrate #GivingTuesday

"I do not believe one can settle how much we ought to give. I am afraid the only safe rule is to give more than we can spare. In other words, if our expenditure on comforts, luxuries, amusements, etc., is up to the standard common among those with the same income as our own, we are probably giving away too little. If our charities do not at all pinch or hamper us, I should say they are too small. There ought to be things we should like to do and cannot do because our charitable expenditures excludes them."

C.S. Lewis, English author

Dear Friends,

We have a day for giving thanks. We have a day for getting deals. Now, we also have a day called #GivingTuesday, a day devoted across the globe to giving back. It’s sort of an underground movement of generosity.

It’s a very simple idea. Just think of a way for your family, your business, your small group, your community or your organization to come together and give more. Invite your friends to join you, and be a part of a global celebration of generosity.

As you plan for #GivingTuesday, or any year-end gifts, we hope you will consider making a gift to BrookLink. Help us further the work of equipping, empowering and releasing church leaders across the globe.

To make a gift to BrookLink this #GivingTuesday, please visit our website.

Thanks for joining the celebration!

Many blessings,

Thanksgiving

Written by Lee Heyward on Monday, 23 November 2015. Posted in Blog

Thanksgiving

Dear Friends,

In just a few days across America many of us will gather around tables with family and friends to celebrate Thanksgiving.

At BrookLink we have many reasons to give thanks. Let me share a few with you.

We give thanks to you for your faithful partnership with BrookLink. Throughout 2015 you have not only served us, but countless pastors and church leaders have benefitted from the ministry of BrookLink this year.

We give thanks that the global church continues to grow rapidly across parts of Asia, Africa and Latin America. In many of these places churches and church leaders face enormous adversity and opposition. That’s why we believe equipping and encouraging pastors and church leaders is so necessary.

We give thanks for our overseas partners who have written to express the ways their lives have been impacted:

  • "Thank you for the preaching seminar. Your training has transformed my perception and view of preaching and has brought about a renewed passion to be faithful in handling God's truth."
    Pastor Kennedy Dick, South Africa

A Leap Forward

Written by Lee Heyward on Wednesday, 11 November 2015. Posted in Blog

A Leap Forward

Dear Friends,

I remember the day well—July 20, 1969. As a fourteen-year old my eyes were glued to a flickering black and white television set. Late that evening, astronaut Neil Armstrong planted his foot in another world and uttered those now famous words, “That’s one small step for man, one GIANT LEAP for mankind.” I, along with an estimated 530 million people watched Armstrong’s image and heard his now famous statement.

NASA’s Apollo 11 mission is just one example of a ‘LEAP’ forward in history, and there have been many! Another leap occurred during the 1st Century when a young medical doctor-turned-historian decided to write his eyewitness account of the growth of a spectacular movement. In less than 30 years, this fledgling group became a worldwide phenomenon, impacting kings and kingdoms alike.

And in case you’re still wondering, the aforementioned doctor’s name is Luke, his book is “The Acts of the Apostles” and the movement is called the church. Sprinkled throughout the Book of Acts, Dr. Luke repeatedly reminds us of the growth and expansion of the church—orchestrated entirely by the Holy Spirit! It was a GIANT LEAP forward!

Compassion for the Displaced

Written by Lee Heyward on Monday, 28 September 2015. Posted in Blog

Compassion for the Displaced

Dear Praying Friends,

It’s hard to miss the heart-breaking stories of the day-to-day crisis developing across the European Continent regarding the tens of thousands of men, women and children fleeing oppressive regimes. The continent of Europe is facing enormous challenges politically, economically, ethnically, and even spiritually.

For many years, Europe has been known as the post-modern epicenter. Yet today, many experts believe there is a new spirituality emerging out of this post-modern context, and it is potentially favorable for the Christian Gospel. Did you know that church planting is on the rise across many parts of Europe? And a great many of those church plants are sprouting up among the various migrant populations that are flooding the continent.

Terry and I saw firsthand evidence of this new reality on European soil when we visited Athens, Greece in May. We spent an entire week ministering exclusively among displaced Iranians, Afghanis and Syrians longing to learn of Jesus, and eager to draw hope from God’s Word. What oppressive regimes meant for evil, God is using for good by ‘gathering’ those scattered to Himself.

Study-Do-Teach

Written by Lee Heyward on Tuesday, 01 September 2015. Posted in Blog

Study-Do-Teach

Dear Friends,

If ever there were a ‘poster child’ for BrookLink, it would be Ezra. You can read all about his life in an Old Testament book named for him. Ezra lived during a very dark and discouraging time in ancient Israel’s history.

In today’s world, we hear regularly the plight of exiles forced from their countries because of famine, war or religious oppression. Stripped from their homeland and driven by desperation, these misplaced peoples risk life and limb for a better future. Who will minister to these displaced people?

Ezra was called upon by God to minister to a displaced people group who had just survived seventy years of exile. His mission is summarized in these words, “For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel” (Ezra 7:10).

Study, do, and teach—present a model for ministers around the world. Long-range effective teaching of the Bible does not happen without long hours of ongoing study of the Bible. We equip those we train in how to study their Bibles.

Multiplier

Written by Lee Heyward on Wednesday, 22 July 2015. Posted in Blog

Multiplier

Dear Friends,

It’s mid-summer in good ole Milwaukee. After a cool start to the summer, the temps have risen, the ethnic festival season is in full swing, and the debate ad nauseam about a new Bucks Basketball Arena has all but subsided. Wisconsin is a great place to be during summertime.

It’s been good to be home for a few weeks. June was a busy month for BrookLink with events in Seattle, ministry at the Advocate Summit of Mission Aviation Fellowship in Idaho, and my first-time trip to southeastern Poland to train ‘Free Church’ pastors and leaders in three cities.

This week I leave for Kinshasa, the capital city of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DR-Congo). In 2007 leaders from the African Evangelical Free Churches met to address the African Church’s need to reach Africa with the gospel. One leader shared, “It’s our job as African Christians to reach Africa’s unreached people.”  Pastor Nubako Selenga was their unanimous choice to lead this new movement.

From the Field | Poland

Written by Lee Heyward on Thursday, 25 June 2015. Posted in Blog

Letters from Lee about Ministry in Zamosc, Poland

From the Field | Poland

On Wednesday, June 24, Pastor Jacek Duda, Rich Frazer and I traveled to Zamosc, Poland. Zamosc is in the southeastern part of Poland and nearby to the Ukrainian border. Purportedly, Zamosc has the cleanest air quality on the European Continent, making it a resident and retiree-friendly place.

At its height this Renaissance-style city once enjoyed a population of around 70,000 people, however since WWII the city has seen its population dwindle to around 48,000. Founded in 1580 the city boasts a beautiful and colorful 2.5-acre town square, surrounded by a fortress wall. We toured the city and visited the site of the Rotunda, a circular structure just outside the city wall. During WWII, Hitler’s armies overtook the Rotunda and used it as an interrogation facility. Between 1940-1944 more than 8,000 members of the Polish Resistance were burned to death at this site. It was a grim reminder of the German and Russian atrocities committed against the Polish people.

Lee and Pastor Duda

Saying Yes!

Written by Lee Heyward on Tuesday, 23 June 2015. Posted in Blog

Saying Yes!

Dear Friends,

On June 15, 2015 the evangelical world mourned. Elisabeth Elliot, one of the most influential Christian women during my lifetime, passed away. Elliot was a wise mentor to many, a passionate spiritual writer and a towering model of an obedient follower of Christ. Several of her books are on my shelf. Terry and I remember listening to her inspiring story at an Inter-Varsity Urbana Missionary Conference in 1976.

Elisabeth married three times—her first two husbands preceded her in death. Her first husband was Jim Elliot. Jim and four other missionaries were ambushed by a group of Auca Indians and killed along a sandy beach in the jungles of Ecuador in 1956. Her second husband lost an agonizing battle with cancer. Elisabeth knew the experience of deep pain and loss.

Ironically, when I heard the news of Elisabeth Elliot’s death I was in Nampa, Idaho to speak at the Advocate’s Summit for Mission Aviation Fellowship (MAF). As I was preparing to leave the final day, my host took me to the MAF gift shop. There displayed was the actual frame of the airplane that flew Jim Elliot and the others to the very beach where they were savagely killed (incidentally, it was a MAF pilot that flew the plane that day). It was a surreal moment for me—and a poignant reminder of the costliness of obedience to Christ. I love what I do because I often have the privilege to meet similarly minded followers of Jesus.

Lee Teaching in IdahoLee Teaching in Idaho

Stories from Greece

Written by Lee Heyward on Wednesday, 20 May 2015. Posted in Blog

Stories from Greece

Dear Friends,

Recently BrookLink was invited by 222 Ministries to teach and train a group of Iranian church leaders in Athens, Greece. All of them had a story to tell! For a whole week my friend Paul Sinclair and I were teaching these men and women about God as our Father—a heavenly Father, whose extravagant and costly love set Him apart from even the best of earthly fathers.Paul Sinclair

During one of our sessions I shared with those gathered about how God as Father knows everything about us—even our tears do not go unnoticed. I quoted the following Scripture:

“You have kept a count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?” Psalm 56:8 (ESV)

There is a tradition in Middle Eastern cultures that a soldier going off to war gives his wife or girlfriend a small vial to be worn around her neck. Every time the woman would cry at night over the absence of her loved one, and as she wept, the tears would be collected in the bottle until her lover would return. This poetic imagery is the Psalmist’s way of teaching that God not only sees our tears, He preserves them too!

From the Field | Greece

Written by BrookLink on Monday, 11 May 2015. Posted in Blog

A Letter from Lisa Sinclair

Lisa Sinclair

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Dear Friends,

As I write, I am looking out over a sky so blue and a sea even bluer that make the white buildings that stud the rocky coast startling in their brilliance. It is beautiful. The kind of beauty that almost hurts to behold, and it is so hard to reconcile with the evil that we have seen in our world.

It is a great privilege to minister here in Greece with Lee and Terry Heyward of BrookLink to Iranian and Afghan refugees. Actually, it has been a complicated trip, and we barely understand ourselves who we have been with! Lee and Paul have been primarily with Iranians who live in Europe now, having come to know the Lord from Muslim backgrounds. But there are also Armenians from Eastern Orthodox background. All have been blessed to learn more of the Father's character and love as Lee and Paul taught from Luke 15, the story of the Prodigal son(s).  Paul taught on characteristics of the Father from the lives of Moses, Noah, and Joseph to describe mercy, long suffering, and faithfulness. He was blessed to lead the closing communion.

Terry and I have been working with a different group. Every day after worship with the main group that Lee and Paul worked with, we left to go to another building close by to work with women currently living in the refugee camps. Every day we worked with Afghan refugee women, Muslims, who had come to Greece via Iran and Turkey, by land or sea. We taught them about the Lord's love for wounded women, and how He values women using the stories of the Samaritan woman, the woman with the issue of blood, Mary, and the anointing woman. We thought this would be a good subject for them, but had no idea how hungry they were, nor how oppressed by men they had been. We ended our time together by learning how to dance in an Afghan way! At least 2 of the 13 had come to the Lord, and others are on the Jesus road. 

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