This is a story of the journey of Sandy’s prayer coordinators. Sandy is a partner of Interserve Singapore who serves in Central Asia. Names of our partners have been changed for security reasons.
We met on a warm Sunday afternoon. Rachel was in a bright-coloured dress and Anthony in his casual best. Both are attending Bukit Panjang Methodist Church. Rachel was originally from Calvary Chapel, the church that Sandy introduced her to after they first met in school. Their friendship grew through the fellowship in church. Through Sandy, Rachel also learnt more about missions, and her first missions trip was to Cambodia.
Likewise, Anthony was involved in missions and it was on a trip that he first met Rachel. Both of them continued pursuing the missions interest together by attending the Perspective Course. There, they learnt the importance of prayer, which led them to join prayer meetings like Interserve's monthly prayer at Bartley Christian Church.
As Sandy’s calling into the field became more definite, Rachel was asked to be her prayer coordinator. This resonated with her growing commitment to God's mission and also with Anthony’s. So both took on the challenge of supporting Sandy in the pursuit of her call. The missions field in a Muslim dominant world is very different from the Southeast Asian fields. The heightened tension and regional instability in those regions make the commitment very real and harsh. As I spoke with Rachel and Anthony I sensed both were very committed and passionate individuals.
Rachel is into special needs education, which requires a prerequisite of great patience and skill. She has recently joined a new school where she teaches autistic children with. As for Anthony, after his legal training he is now working in a well-known firm in the city. Although his schedule is tight he is just as committed to support this prayer venture.
From their training and exposure, they realise that a prayer coordinator plays a key role in missions between the person on the field and his or her local fellowship. Prayer Coordinators hold the lifeline for the field partners in Interserve. As Rachel puts it, they are like the people holding onto the rope of the one who is going down into the well. For the rescue mission to be successful, those holding the rope cannot let go. I thought that image was apt and well grasped! I have seen Rachel presenting her findings of the field needs at a prayer meeting. And what an awesome sharing it was. She certainly read up a lot and gained a comprehensive sense of the people to whom Sandy was called. I was educated indeed.
Both Rachel and Anthony are themselves on the threshold of a life partnership. They are willing and eager to learn to invest in others. It seems to me their commitment to being prayer supporters and coordinators for their friend Sandy is like a rope of three strands. This is a rope woven around the Lord and bound by their mutual faith and love for Him, and which helps make impossible missions possible!
Much of the world’s attention is focused on the one at the end of the rope climbing in and out of the missions fields. No doubt their sacrifices are great, but it is team effort. Without such commitment of prayer partners like Rachel and Anthony, few of us would dare venture into the hard places where the neediest are to be found.
It was a warm afternoon indeed. I left our interview struck by warmth emanating from within. Thank you Rachel and Anthony. May the Lord grant you both strength and grace for your vital role in a prayerful journey of missions.