That was the question put before an audience by a guest speaker at World Vision years ago, at a time when our family was living in Southern California and Dad was by then in charge of at least a couple such “programs” with the Christian humanitarian organization. The question marked a turning point in my father’s life: it catapulted him down the path of a life dedicated to “transformational prayer.”
In the years to come, the joke in our immediate family would be that Dad picked for his destinations the countries at the top of the State Department’s travel warning list. Bosnia and Sierra Leone in the height of war there- the latter of which required a last-minute airlift out of trouble. Pakistan. Afghanistan. (Usually the countries ending in “stan”‘ tend to be on that list.) Just weeks ago, Dad was in Egypt, where an unhappy electorate’s clashes with President Mohamed Morsi’s government were sending shock waves around the world.
Funny thing is, as a kid growing up, I never really knew how to explain my dad’s job. It was just plain weird. Whereas other friends’ dads worked in real estate, fixed cars, or managed investment portfolios, Dad was off in some strange, exotic part of the world organizing prayer initiatives to bring warring peoples together to pray. I mean, how do you explain that, really, even when you’re not a teenager with mild acne and a fierce desire to fit in?
The other day, Dad sent on the above video to us kids, which was recently recorded at the “Testify Conference” in Albuquerque, New Mexico and is an eye-opening glimpse of what Dad has been doing with his time all these years. The next fifteen minutes will, I suspect, provoke and maybe even inspire you to think more deeply about the church, God’s mission and how prayer fits in. I’m curious to hear your thoughts!