LEVERAGING THE DIVINE EXPEDITION (ROMANS)
A little more than a year ago, Sharon and I felt it was time to leverage our years of training and experience by joining the staff of Global Training Network. I had just completed writing (with Linus Jr) The Divine Expedition: Where Are You in the Book of Romans? The book has done well and study groups are now using it to work through Romans in San Francisco, California and Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Ministry partner Phil Graf and I are using the Divine Expedition as a foundation (Phase 1) of training in Uganda, South Sudan, Kenya, and soon (May) in Uruguay and Brazil. We have invitations pending in Ghana and Zambia. The vision of our training is to “multiply viral, missional, church-planting, movements.”
Our four-phase On-Expedition training leverages our many years of training and experience in evangelism, discipleship, leadership and church multiplication, and emphasis on God’s great grace. It is clear from Romans that the Apostle Paul had a passion to reach others with the Good News of Jesus. So do we.
I was fortunate as a new Christian to be immediately trained to share my faith in Christ with others. My mentor, Ron Thurman, director of Campus Crusade at Oregon State University, taught me how to “share my testimony” and took me with him in to dorms and fraternities to share the Gospel message. I didn’t have time to talk myself out of doing it. Within weeks of coming to Christ, I was telling others of what Jesus had done in my life and marriage.
In like manner, our On-Expedition training not only equips others in how to share their own story (“what my life was like before knowing Christ, how I came to know Christ, and what Christ has done since coming to know him”), but also has them go out and share with others. On our most recent trip in Uganda, we sent some 30 pastors and leaders into the surrounding area with the assignment to connect, share their story, and give a brief presentation of the Gospel. In one hour, between 15-20 Ugandans opened their hearts to Christ.
Of course, our training emphasizes discipleship. Over the years, by God’s grace, we have not only had many find faith in Christ through our ministry, but also grow into fully devoted followers of Jesus. An example of this is an email I received from Richard Wheeler this past week:
“Love you, Linus and Sharon. Thank you so much for being used of God to help me stay the course for these past 41 years. 41 years ago this month Marilyn and I gave our hearts to Jesus in the Karlin’s den, within 6 months I was in the L&P house and you began to disciple me. Your influence and Bible teaching over me is profound, and I count you and your family precious in my sight and eternally grateful. Blessed Resurrection Day” —Richard “Little Bear” Wheeler
Here is another email I received just this past week:
“It was great to talk to you today. You have had a major impact in my life, and even when we don’t talk for years the connection remains the same and it seems as though there has never been a break.” —Ward Warren
LEVERAGING LEADERSHIP AND CHURCH MULTIPLICATION
Sharon and I are privileged to have seen many of those we have influenced for Christ also grow into leaders. Over the years we have played a role in launching more than 50 churches.
We are now leveraging years of study and practical ministry experience (again by God’s grace) to multiply even more leaders and churches around the globe. Following Jesus, we want to “make disciples of all people” by “going”, “baptizing in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit”, and “teaching to obey” everything Jesus commanded” (Matthew 28:16-20).
LEVERAGING GOD’S GRACE
When the Apostle Paul met with the Ephesus elders he said,
“I consider my life worth nothing to me, if only I may finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me — the task of testifying to the gospel of God’s grace“ (Acts 20:24).
By God’s grace, Jesus rescued and saved me as a last year university student at Oregon State University. By God’s grace, He rescued Sharon’s and my marriage, and has given us six wonderful children who love Jesus. By His grace He has led us and used us in the areas of evangelism, discipleship, and leadership and church multiplication.” By His grace we are leveraging all that He has entrusted to us to “multiply viral, missional, church-planting, movements.”
It is all by His grace…and yours.
Bringing a return for and through our Savior-King,
Linus and Sharon
 My first Doctor of Ministry degree focused on church planting and church growth, and my second Doctor of Ministry focused on transformational leadership.
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Love hearing about you guys and what you’re doing.