To glorify God by cultivating spiritual and physical flourishing through cross-cultural ministry.
A world that recognizes and declares God’s glory as individuals, communities and nations experience healing through truth and compassion.
1. Biblical Mandates
Because we have received the great healing (Isaiah 53:5) we obey the great commandment (Matthew 22:35–40), the great commission (Matthew 28:16-20) and the great requirement (Micah 6:8). These passages summarize the Christian life: glorifying God by making disciples, with spiritual and societal healing as the result.
2. Dependence on God
We recognize that the fulfillment of our mission cannot be accomplished by human strategies. There is a direct correlation between how we engage with our sovereign Lord and participating with Him in fulfilling His Kingdom purposes. Consequently, prayer, fasting, seeking wisdom from Scripture and other spiritual disciplines are essential to our practice as an organization, and in any strategy for community development implemented by those living in a developing nation.
3. Wholistic Discipleship
We believe that personal and social transformation is not possible without becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ. Discipleship happens in the course of understanding and obeying Jesus’ teaching, not from simply assenting to biblical facts. Consequently, we value wholistic discipleship that addresses all of life (spiritual and physical) as the primary element in development work and to effect positive change in affluent cultures. The Gospel is the gateway, the framework and the culmination of discipleship.
4. The Local Church
We believe that the local church, wherever it exists, is God’s primary vehicle in accomplishing His purposes. Therefore, we prioritize engagement with churches for the fulfillment of our mission.
5. Cross-Cultural Partnerships
We engage churches, groups, families and individuals in international partnerships. Special care is taken to break down stereotypes and address cultural lies that hold people in bondage to broken systems.
We facilitate projects of compassion and mercy, giving preference to the needs of the most marginalized. We avoid dependency and reinforcing ideas about helplessness by working hard to ensure no one does for the poor what they can do for themselves, when they have a proper understanding of their capacity and resources.
7. Care For People
The love we seek to share internationally will also be evident in our cultural ethos. Donors, project recipients, project partners, volunteers, staff and board, all who are involved in the work of this organization, will be treated with respect and value.
Jesus commissioned His followers to go into all the world and make disciples of all nations, teaching them to obey all that He commanded. The global church has sought to carry out this mandate ever since it was given. Around 200 years ago, as the world got smaller through western affluence and technology, the efforts to make disciples increased exponentially. However, as the west flourished, propelled forward by a biblical worldview that had birthed reason, rights, liberty and economy, tragedy occurred; the message and practice of missionaries became truncated by a false distinction between the “sacred” and “secular.” Beginning in the late 1800’s, many Christ followers began to see the Gospel message as simply related to the spiritual, while physical life (including compassion ministry) became “worldly” and incidental. Displaying God’s love through social work was left for liberal churches with a low view of the Bible, while fundamentalists focused on getting people prepared for heaven. Instead of making disciples, missionaries by and large made converts; people who accepted a message primarily perceived as applying to the afterlife, and a God to simply add to their current folk religious belief system. Consequently, most of the cultural lies and factors that perpetuate spiritual darkness and poverty remained in play. With unconverted minds, the “reached” world has remained in large part undiscipled and biblically illiterate. And the west, seeing the gospel as a personal salvation message only, was seduced by materialism and belief systems that are antithetical to the Christian message.
Today there are millions of people who live in spiritual and physical poverty because of broken systems, broken governments, broken relationships and an abridged Gospel. They need the truth in God’s Word to transform their minds, and sometimes a “hand up” to begin to flourish. There are also millions of people living in more affluent cultures longing for a deeper spiritual life, but who are mired in a naturalistic worldview. They need wholistic discipleship that addresses all of life, coupled with opportunities to love neighbors locally and globally. Healing Nations exists to bridge gaps; to provide wholistic discipleship tools and coaching to those who need them; and to connect churches and groups across borders for appropriate ongoing cross-cultural discipleship, relationships and compassion work.
We all need a transformed mind from God’s truth and a passion for God’s glory. Christians globally are hungering for spiritual depth, with many missing out on the spiritual formation that comes from joining God in His mission in the world. We believe God is inviting all of us to join Him in healing the nations, both the affluent and poverty stricken, through the power of His Word and the obedience of His people to live out all that Jesus commanded.
God is healing nations and inviting us to join Him in His mission to bring more glory to His name.
Healing comes in many forms: spiritual, emotional, cultural and physical. For many people living in the west, stepping across a border to serve others provides an opportunity to join the mission of God and participate in His healing work. For those who are Christ followers, it’s also an opportunity for personal discipleship that can catalyze our priorities and understanding of the needs of the world. For others who are not Christ followers, it’s an opportunity for exposure to people living out Christ’s call to care for the marginalized, hopefully moving the spiritually unengaged toward their own spiritual healing.
The Name “Healing Nations” provides the content and context of this organization.
Content (What): The world is afflicted by sin, which distorts all relationships: with God, self, others and creation. We need to be healed, and that healing only comes through the great physician, Jesus Christ (Isaiah 53:5), who has reconciled the world to Himself (2 Corinthians 5:19, Colossians 1:19-20). The healing is both spiritual and physical; restoring our relationship with God and providing the Spirit-led capacity to pursue peace and flourishing in all other relationships and areas of living. Acts of compassion also address the healing and capacity of the physical lives of the marginalized. There are many affluent Christ followers who also need to be healed by the truth of God’s Word, utilized by the Spirit to deepen their love for Christ and expose idolatry.
Context (Who): God desires a people for Himself that come from all “tribes and tongues.” He desires for His glory to be spread among the nations. Thus, we have a global focus that encompasses all peoples. Many of the “reached” developing nations are not displaying evidence of transformation because the Gospel of the Kingdom of God has not been proclaimed in its fullness. We focus on these nations while acknowledging the need to reach the unreached.
There is clear evidence that God is moving in our generation through the efforts of wholistic discipleship and cross-cultural engagement in healing people, communities and nations … let’s join God in what He’s doing and spread the good news of the Kingdom far and wide.
Foundational Biblical Truths That Drive Us
JESUS IS KING (MATTHEW 28:18)
There is one God, eternally existent in three Persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit (Deut. 6:4; Luke 3:21-22). Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords (Dan. 7:13-14; Eph. 1:20-22; Phil. 2:9-11; Rev. 19:16). We proclaim with the prophet Isaiah: “Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end” (Isaiah 9:7).
HIS PRIMARY AGENDA IS TO ADVANCE THE KINGDOM OF GOD (MATTHEW 6:9-10) …
Christ’s purpose is to establish and advance His Kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven” (Gen. 12:1-3; Matt. 6:9-10; Matt. 6:33; Matt. 9:35; Luke 4:43; Gal. 3:8). This Kingdom comes as a worldwide reality and exists wherever the Lordship of Jesus is acknowledged in repentance, faith and obedience to His revealed will (Isaiah 9:6-7). The Kingdom is a present reality. It offers present hope for substantial healing and restoration, though its fullness is yet to come (Matt. 13:33; Luke 11:20; Luke 16:16; Luke 22:15-26; Rev. 11:15; Rev. 21:1-2, 23-26).
…BY MAKING DISCIPLES OF ALL NATIONS (MATTHEW 28:19)
We believe the Kingdom advances as individuals hear and accept the Gospel by faith, are spiritually reborn, and experience inward regeneration and transformation, expressed by their obedience to “all I have commanded.” The Gospel is the gateway, the framework and the culmination of discipleship; it is the gateway in that Christ’s death and resurrection secure our salvation. It is the framework in that our relationships with one another and the world are reframed by the Gospel’s power and communicated as we rehearse that Gospel in loving the broken other. It is the culmination of discipleship in that we live under the exalted reign of Christ over His kingdom, proclaim that reign and invite others to join us as His subjects. Nations are discipled as the church makes the Kingdom visible within its culture, by faithfully obeying God’s Word in every area of life and every realm of society, including the family, community, arts, science, media, law, government, education and business (Gen. 1:26-28; Col. 1:18b).
HIS KEY AGENT IN THIS TASK IS THE LOCAL CHURCH (EPHESIANS 3:9-11)
The church (the body and bride of Christ) is God’s principally ordained agent in advancing the Kingdom of God (Matt. 16:18-19; Eph. 1:22-23; Eph. 3:8-11). The present expression of the universal church is the living, worldwide body of redeemed people who have placed their faith in the person and work of Christ alone for the forgiveness of their sins, have been adopted as children of God, and have been given the Spirit of God as a pledge of their inheritance (Eph. 2:14-22; 1 Peter 2:9-10).
The local church is an intentional, community-based expression of the universal church. It meets regularly for worship, fellowship, teaching, equipping and deployment for service. Each local church is called to live as the incarnate Body of Christ. As the church follows its Head, the message of the Kingdom becomes credible within the church’s community of service.
Nations are discipled as local churches send their members into every sphere of society. Acting as agents of transformation, these members use their skills and God-given gifts for ministry and service to others (1 Peter 4:10). By lifestyle and intentional action, they promote the reign of Christ in each of their respective spheres (Eph. 4:11-13).
THE MINISTRY OF THE CHURCH MUST BE WHOLISTIC (COLOSSIANS 1:19-20)
God is Lord of all. Therefore, His redemptive concern is comprehensive. He seeks to bring healing and restoration to all things by means of Christ’s shed blood on the cross (Gen. 1:31a; Rom. 8:18-23; Col. 1:19-20). The Kingdom advances as local churches reflect God’s comprehensive, redemptive concern for the whole of creation (Matt. 4:23; Luke 4:18-21). Therefore, the ministry of the local church must be wholistic. It must minister to whole persons: spiritual, physical, social and mental. Further, it must encompass their relationships with God, with others and with creation. Answers to questions such as these should set the agenda for the local church: What would our village look like if Christ were chief? What would our city look like if Christ were mayor? What would our nation look like if Christ were King, President or Prime Minister?
THE MINISTRY OF THE CHURCH MUST BE INCARNATIONAL (JOHN 17:15-19)
The church is the body of Christ, just as Jesus was God in human flesh. The church manifests Christ as it ministers in the midst of the broken world (John 1:14; Rom. 13:14a, Eph. 5:1; Phil. 2:5-8). Christ’s compassion, love, sacrificial service and humble obedience should be clearly reflected as the watching world looks at the church. The Godhead is a community: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Therefore, God’s nature and character are more clearly manifested in the world as the church lives out the Kingdom life in incarnational community (Eph. 4:11-13).
THE LOCAL CHURCH MUST OPERATE INTENTIONALLY FROM THE WORLDVIEW OF THE BIBLE (COLOSSIANS 1:15-18)
The Bible is the inspired, infallible, powerful and authoritative Word of God (John 17:17; 2 Tim. 3:16-17). The Bible presents a comprehensive worldview, revealing God’s truth to all peoples about the nature of ultimate reality, the source of evil, the origin and nature of the physical universe, the meaning and purpose of human life, and the goal of history. Christ’s disciples must be transformed by the biblical worldview. They must have their minds renewed by actively putting off false worldviews, distortions of the truth that Satan uses to enslave individuals and nations (Matt. 22:37; Rom. 1:18-23; Rom. 12:2; 2 Cor. 10:3-5; Col. 2:6-8; 1 Peter 1:13). The discipleship of nations requires that Christ’s followers allow the biblical worldview to enlighten every area of their lives and carry it outward into every sphere of society (Isaiah 11:9b; Matt. 28:18-20; John 8:31-32).