This Changes Everything
Jul 27, 2020 | 4 min read | Tyler Patty
“No way. How come no one ever told me about this before? This changes everything!”
Štěpán is one of those young leaders with an infectious joy. When God is doing something in his life, he can’t help but share it. There is no question about the things that energize him—people, music, and his Savior. This joy is a great gift to those he leads in the Fusion ministry in Pisek, Czech Republic. God has used this ministry in Pisek to not only draw the lost to himself, but also to equip believers to share their faith and use their gifts to glorify God.
Although Štěpán had previously studied to be an EMT, his experiences in leading an outreach ministry caused him to reconsider his life trajectory. What if God was calling him to serve, not just a few hours a week, but with his whole life? Although he grew up in the church, he recognized that he needed to grow in his understanding of the Bible, theology, and missional leadership. When Matt, a JV missionary and Štěpán’s mentor, shared about a new opportunity to get this kind of training, Štěpán was eager to learn more.
In September 2019, Josiah Venture launched a bachelor’s degree program with ForMission College to train young leaders across Central and Eastern Europe for God’s mission. Twelve students, including Štěpán, answered the call to mission and have begun their three-year journey through the degree program. During the first intensive teaching week at our conference center, we opened up a “simple topic”—the Trinity.
Together, we discovered something fascinating. Far from a dusty concept that is reserved for the theological elite, the doctrine of the Trinity has a profound impact on Christian mission. This three-in-one God has always been in a loving, self-giving, interdependent relationship within himself. This love “bleeds out,” as God longs to draw others into this perfect relationship. Mission is not something the Church does for God, but something God does out of his nature. God as Trinity is a God on mission.
As we discussed this in class, the lights came on in Štěpán’s eyes. “No way. How come no one ever told me about this before? I always thought that God needed us to experience love. I thought of myself more as a soldier, with a job to do to make God happy. Now I know what it means that ‘God is love!’ I get to be a servant of this loving Trinity, drawing others into his love. This changes everything!”
Štěpán’s first year of studying at ForMission College has been challenging. He’s faced some significant hurdles in his personal life as well as his ministry. But, this truth about God and his mission has anchored him. It’s not about what we can do for God; it’s about what God is doing, and where he is inviting us to join him.
This kind of deep transformation is exactly why we launched our campus with ForMission College. When we look at past movements of God, a key to their longevity is investment in the theological training of young leaders. A sad example of this is post-Reformation Poland, which, after a passionate first generation, was infected with an anti-Trinitarian heresy. When second-generation leaders weren’t able to deal with these theological challenges, the country soon reverted to its pre-Reformation state. Without a rich understanding of a loving Trinity, the Church easily loses sight of the mission of God.
As students across Central and Eastern Europe choose to study at our college campus, we pray for many more “aha!” moments like Štěpán’s. We pray that God ignites in these leaders a fire for his mission, emanating from his mysterious and beautiful nature.
Related Blog Posts
Dear Friends, “I don’t think we will find a solution.” My wife Connie looked back at me with a bit of surprise, since she rarely... Read more
“We see that there are many young volunteers in churches who really love to serve and God has called them to serve, but they don’t know how;... Read more
Wait!? I thought there were 12 tribes! Don’t panic. You have indeed read your Bible correctly all these years. God did bring all 12 of the... Read more