I remember one of the first times I came into contact with Serge (then World Harvest Mission). It was on one of those early summer Saturday mornings. I had given up precious free time to hang out in a church cafeteria and listen to people I barely knew—but had heard good things about.
Specifically, I’d gotten wind of a weekend teaching event based on the Sonship course. Friends were testifying that Sonship, taught by World Harvest, helped them really turn a corner and have new freedom and joy in their walk of faith in Christ. With my friends’ enthusiasm in mind, I figured this was worth a Saturday morning sacrificed.
The speakers—Steve and Jeff—were engaging. They knew how to tell stories. Steve kicked off the time by sharing a chart comparing orphans vs. sons (or daughters). He said that over the course of history, lots of really driven, really successful people actually had started life as an orphan.
Their drivenness came from a lack of security. One speaker talked about, “How to love a jerk.” And I thought, these people are kind of gritty, raw—I could smell freedom.
This weekend, along with several other moments in that season of my life, were turning points when I learned that I could not only be saved by grace but also live by grace. I’m still learning that lesson, by the way.
Somewhere along the line, I discovered that this same organization was not only providing mentoring, conferences, and resources in what we commonly call “spiritual renewal” in the U.S., they also sent out missionaries. What I didn’t realize was that sending missionaries had actually started first.
Yes, Serge originally developed Sonship and lots of other resources for a group of international staff who were serving all over the world in frayed and fraying places. Just like me, as these people engaged in mission, they needed reminders to constantly apply the good news of Jesus to their own lives.
So the coin flipped. I could see that the effective renewal work Serge was carrying out among people engaged in international missions was actually becoming a blessing to the American church.
I don’t know which side of the coin you have encountered in your contact with Serge. Maybe you know Serge as the Sonship people (renewal). Maybe you are walking with a Serge missionary. Maybe you’ve served on a short-term team.
Whatever your Serge experience is, I hope you will take the time to look into an organization that is deep, wide, and seeking to respond to God’s
Spirit’s leading to be a blessing as far as the curse is found.
And I hope you are reminded of the good news of the gospel. It’s for you, for me, for missionaries, and for those who are yet to believe.