It’s a bit hard to believe that this is the last Graceworks commentary for the year. This year feels more full than other years. Perhaps it has been developments in family, especially caring for mum in Penang. She is 92, living with dementia and other health issues. We go back once a month to see her. The happier family development is the arrival of Austin, our first grandchild. But he is in Melbourne so to see him we have to travel.
Work has also been demanding. Looking back, we give thanks to the Lord for giving us the privilege to be part of His purposes. We were privileged to publish some key books. One, Mental Health and the Gospel Community was a collection of essays on how the church can understand and reach out to those who grapple with mental illness. Like many of our best projects this was done in partnership, in this case a partnership with Yio Chu Kang Chapel. Publishing is a tough business and major publishers are struggling. We publish because it is what God has called us to do and because we believe the right book in the right hands can change a life or even start a revolution.
There continues to be many demands for our teaching and preaching ministry. Again we are grateful for our partnerships with key institutions and churches. I taught a course on ministering to young adults (twice) with the Biblical Graduate School of Theology and did a number of seminars with IDMC (Intentional Disciple-Making Church) Institute of the Covenant Evangelical Free Church.
We continue to be committed to relational ministries, hence our commitment to spiritual friendship and spiritual mentoring. For example, we continue to emphasize the need to mentor young adults as they make the transition from school life to working life through our Friends In Transition (FIT) mentoring ministry. We do this in two ways. We help churches do it for their own communities, and we run our own FIT groups. We were able to start three FIT groups this year because the Lord raised up a number of couples who are particularly gifted in this ministry to help run the groups.
We don’t talk about this often, but it is true that we can run Graceworks only with the help of sponsorships of people and groups who believe in us and what we are trying to do. So for those who have been helping to sponsor our work, thank you. We hope you will rejoice with us in what the Lord is doing through Graceworks. We also hope you will consider continuing your support for Graceworks.
Next year promises to be a significant one. There will be more sharpening of our ministry, more key books to publish, new staff, and possibly our own premises. We hope you will continue to support us. And if you have not supported us in the past, consider helping to sponsor the work of Graceworks.
Would you consider helping to sponsor the work of Graceworks in your year end giving and as you think about ministry support in 2020?