Several weeks ago I sat slumped over my desk during what seemed like the umpteenth conference call of the month. I was dog tired. I was physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually worn out. Tired “every which way,” as my grandfather used to say.
The past two years at e3 have been exhilarating, exciting . . . and exhausting (how’s that for a new “e3”?). Adding a new e3 Partners $30/mo giving program. With those resources greatly expanding the help we give to our national partners over and above the campaigns. Taking on a new role of leading the development of national strategies, staff and infrastructure for the 30 countries in which we work. Changing our name to e3 Partners Ministry.
So for two years every decision our leadership team has made has been a brand new decision because of these changes. No coasting on past experience. Everything has reevaluated. Every big strategy and every little detail has been reviewed, refined and revised in light of these changes. While I loved the new doors God was opening, and thankful I was part of a strong team, it also was very tiring.
The conference call that morning was the first meeting of another new team. That team was to spearhead a deeper emphasis on prayer throughout e3. On the call were some of the strongest prayer warriors I personally know, and we were meeting by phone because they were spread from Tennessee to California. The agenda for that first meeting was . . . can you believe it . . . just prayer!
A picture came to mind as I closed my eyes and leaned back in my chair. It was a scene from Exodus 17. Joshua and his men were in the valley fighting. Moses was on the hill with the rod of God in His hand. The symbol to all Israel of reliance on God. When he held it up, they won. When his tired arms drooped, they got pummeled. So Aaron and Hur held up his hands, and God gave them victory. (Picture above from http://oneyearbible.blogs.com)
That day those prayer warriors supported my tired arms, just as Aaron and Hur had done centuries ago. God gave me a fresh sense of His creative power as His grace flowed through that Aaron Team—that “A” Team—on the phone that day.
God’s "A" Team for Our National Leaders
That call took place in the midst of our preparations to bring many of our national leaders to Dallas last month for our e3 International Conference. As I read, reread, meditated and prayed over that passage, I sensed that God wanted us to do the same for our national leaders. They have “Joshua Squads”—teams of people that are on the front lines of spiritual battles. Each national leader is like our Moses directing his team and keeping them focused on God and relying on His power, not their own. We wanted them to know that there is an A Team here lifting up their arms as the battles rage around them.
We started with a Leaders Summit as 30 leaders from 20 countries arrived in Dallas. It was a gathering for just the national leaders and a US based Strategy Coordinator for each country. We listened to their reports. We asked for their advice. We brainstormed with them. We wanted to learn from them more than we wanted to give them info. They then were the focal point of our International Conference.
But most of all we prayed for them. Frequently we prayed for them, sometimes symbolically holding up their arms, as Aaron did, to show that we support them in the spiritual battles they and their teams fight back home. You can see that in this picture of Vasily Dmitrievsky, our Russia National Director, as his A Team prays for him.
"A" Teams Pray, Give, Go
You are on the A Team for the nationals, too. As you pray for them, you are on their A Team. As you give to support the work in these countries through the e3 Partners program, you are on their A Team. As you go on e3 Mission Trips, you are part of the nationals’ A Team. You support them with your presence and encouragement. As you give so others can go, you are on their A Team.
Thanks For Being On Our "A" Team!
You make this ministry possible. God answers the prayers of our A Team-ers who pray for us. He sustains us through the financial help of the A Team members that give. He fills our campaign teams with A Team members that go. He encourages us through the calls, comments and emails of His A Team. Thanks for being part of God’s A Team!