Editorial

And now, a word from our sponsor . . .

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As a reader of this magazine, you peer with us into some of the most captivating works of God taking place in our world. And this issue is no exception. You’ll read about a drug lord who turned to Jesus and is pointing others toward Him. You’ll find out how God opened a door for an Alliance worker to care for HIV-positive women in the Congo. You’ll learn how churches in a small Ohio town set aside rivalry to reach out to area youth.

This issue, however, promises to challenge us beyond captivation and into participation. At the end of each article is an opportunity to support Alliance work similar to what is featured in that story. If you are moved by what God is doing, this is your chance. As you read, ask God how He would have you respond. And as you ponder the various giving opportunities presented, please allow me to rave a little about the Great Commission Fund (GCF).

In Matthew 28:18–20, we read Christ’s final charge to the Church: “Go and make disciples of all nations . . . ” From its inception, The Alliance has taken this command very seriously—so seriously, in fact, that we make it a priority for our international workers to focus on the task of making disciples without the burden of raising funds for support. This is why the GCF was created.

Keeping our workers equipped and strategically positioned to help push back the darkness in some of the world’s most spiritually desolate places is one of the immediate fruits of the GCF. But its longest lasting fruit is produced as these workers train national leaders to grow national churches. Because we, the Alliance family, have committed ourselves to this task for more than a century, by God’s grace, there are now more than 2,000 Alliance churches in the United States and nearly 20,000 fellowships in 81 countries around the world. Nearly 5 million Christians call themselves “Alliance,” united by an unquenchable passion to reach our communities for Christ and provide access to the gospel where no access yet exists.

That’s why whenever an earthquake, hurricane or tsunami ravages a Latin American city, a Gulf Coast community or an Indonesian village, Alliance people always seem to show up to lend a helping hand. That’s why Alliance workers and churches in Africa and Asia are providing round-the-clock compassionate care for victims of HIV/AIDS and malaria. That’s why when an oppressive regime fell, an Iraqi Alliance pastor had already answered the call to proclaim Jesus as the Light of the world in the heart of war-torn Baghdad. And that’s why a Chilean Alliance pastor was on the scene to counsel and comfort 33 trapped miners shortly after the mine collapsed. And I could go on and on.

Because Alliance people have given faithfully to a central missions fund for more than a century,

  • Every four minutes, someone prays to receive Christ through the worldwide outreach of Alliance ministries
  • Every hour, three patients, many of them ravaged by AIDS, receive physical and spiritual care through Alliance medical work
  • Every day, via 43 radio broadcasts, people who have had no gospel witness hear the good news
  • Every week, nearly 3,000 new believers are baptized
  • Every month, 253 churches and church groups join the worldwide Alliance family
  • Every year, nearly 10,000 students are trained and equipped for ministry through 125 overseas Alliance theological schools

Oh yes, and by the way, without the Great Commission Fund, you would not be holding this magazine—not only because the GCF helps fund the printing and distribution of alife but also because without GCF-funded ministries, we really wouldn’t have many stories to tell. (Now maybe the title of this editorial makes a little more sense.)

God has privileged the Alliance family to join Him in some pretty monumental works over the years. But we’re not done. Let’s not lose momentum as we face some of the most daunting challenges that lie ahead in finishing the Great Commission task. The “giving link” at the end of each article will enable you to designate a financial gift to one or more of the causes represented in this issue—including the Great Commission Fund.

With an ailing economy and high unemployment, it may defy conventional wisdom to give a little extra this Christmas. A much more prudent plan might be to put a little something away “just in case.” But experience has taught us that God NEVER withholds His provision when His people exercise faith, obedience, risk and sacrifice in carrying out His plans and purposes. And oh, what He can do with a few more loaves and fishes!

Past Alliance Life Issues

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