David Shibley, founder of Global Advance says their mission remains the same but has been tailored to fit an ever-changing world.
“Our goal at Global Advance over these last 23 years has always been to convene, connect, and commission leaders to become catalysts for the fulfilling of the Great Commission.”
Last month, Global Advance held a special training event for key ministry partners and leaders. The purpose of this four-day event was to cast vision, equip, and challenge some ministry leaders to engage in church planting and multiplication. This training event was led by senior leadership from a reputable church-planting ministry that has seen incredible success over the last 21 years of international ministry.
It capped off a year of initiative that grew faster than they could have hoped for. Shibley says, for example, “I think of the victory of Gospel Sunday. In June of last year, over 1800 people made professions of faith in Christ as we encouraged churches throughout east Africa to conduct an evangelistic meeting that day in a clear proclamation of the Gospel.”
There were also the 150 Marketplace Missions conferences that mobilized Christian business leaders, as well as numerous training conferences for Latin America’s youth leaders. “We saw the Holy Spirit just break down every barrier, laying the groundwork for cooperative efforts in nations that have been historically hostile to one another,” notes Shibley.
In fact, it was groundbreaking work like this Shibley credits for making 2013 the seedbed for 2014 growth. “The Lord has given us opportunity to see, in the midst of a darkening world, real victories for Christ this year in 30 nations. We’re anticipating going to 38 nations next year.”
Over the years, unique challenges for training the new generation of pastoral leaders have emerged. Unique challenges always require out-of-the-box thinking, special accommodation, and Kingdom-minded solutions to be overcome. Challenges also mean new opportunity for seeing the Lord work in creative ways. Through much prayer and deliberation, Global Advance is strengthening and deepening global partnerships. Additionally, new focus is being given to the development and distribution of resources for leadership development, discipleship, church planting, marketplace transformation, and reaching the lost.
In 2014, Global Advance will be piloting new initiatives and new methodology that is aimed at helping them reach the reproducible goal of training 1 Million Church Leaders and the Planting of 1 Million New Churches. A lofty goal? In a changing world, it may be, Shibley concedes, but it’s very doable if it’s covered in prayer. “Always, we need to pray for the protection of our teams and also the protection of our frontline leaders who are bearing the name of Christ, often in very hostile circumstances.”
A year to anticipate, indeed.