Thursday, July 12, 2012


          Collaboration is one of my favorite concepts, especially in working with the church. There is something beautiful about bringing together diverse groups and individuals with a variety of skills and passions to work towards a common goal or value. After almost a week in Beirut, my mind and spirit are racing with thoughts of how Calvary can more fully participate in collaborative work with Christ followers in this community.
          Dar El Awlad is a sacred place. Walking around the grounds, I am filled with an overwhelming peace. This should not be the case considering the chaotic and traumatic lives that have brought most of the boys to the residential program and children to the school. However, it is clear that God is working here. The hearts of the staff are true in their desire to love the Lord by loving these children. We are blessed to know, serve alongside, and be served by them.
            This same sacred peace was felt Wednesday night on a visit to the Lebanese Society for Educational & Social Development, also known as the Lebanese Baptist Society. This ministry collaborative houses six different ministry branches that serve Lebanon and the Arab World. These include Beirut Baptist School (K-12), the Arab Baptist Theological Seminary, a publishing house, Community Relief and Development, Children & Youth Ministry, and SKILD Special Education.
          Take a moment with me to reflect on the many different passions and skills of Christ-followers at Calvary (or whatever your local context may be). Now, looks at the common purposes pursued by Dar El Awlad and the Lebanese Baptist Society. Is it not blatantly obvious that God has provided a plethora of options for collaboration to come alongside our brothers and sisters in Lebanon who are sacrificially devoting themselves to kingdom work?

            It is obvious that our short three days with the boys have impacted them and us as I watch the boys flock to Trevor, Josh, Les, Tim, and Jason during play time, repeat in detail the stories told by Lanna, run to hug me goodnight, and beg us all to join them in their units. My heart is full of joy, hope, and anticipation of the possibilities of further collaboration and kingdom work to be done. Please join us in praying about how God might use you to join this collaborative work. The smiles, hugs, and calls of “Miss! Miss!” are beautiful rewards.
~Hannah Abernathy

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