Middle East Christian Outreach (MECO) is celebrating 30 years of serving and building up the church in the Middle East this autumn but is making no time to rest as the mission group looks to return to first principles.
The celebrations come as the Middle East faces an uncertain time in the aftermath of Israel's recent war against Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.
Mike Parker, MECOs new Middle East director, is not only looking back at the organizations progress as it celebrates its 30th anniversary; he is also thinking seriously about the future work of the organization that can build on the progress over the years to advance the gospel even further in the Middle East region.
This autumn we celebrate MECOs 30th anniversary, he wrote in the October edition of MECOs magazine Crossroads.
We rejoice for all that God has accomplished through His people; the progress that has been made over the years and the innovative ways that have been developed to share the Gospel message in the Middle East.
He added: It is also a time to reset our own foundations, to return to first principles.
And things are definitely moving forward. Not only does MECO have a new team in place at its International Services Office in Cyprus, but it has also laid out its international focus which will be firmly set on recruiting, training, placing, reviewing and supporting to improve partnerships with churches in the Middle East.
Today, the focus of the world is on the Middle East, wrote Parker. There is great fear about the region, which seems lose to meltdown. The need to stand with and hear from those who live in the Middle East has never been greater. And never has the message of hope in Christ been so welcome.
The Middle East director appealed for culturally sensitive Christians who are eager to come to work alongside churches in the Middle East and commit themselves fully not only for a few months but for the long term, but most importantly people who are willing to share and model the love of Christ.
He gave thanks for the people like this who had served MECO over its thirty-year history and gave the prayer that more like-minded people would sign up to take the organization forward.
Its a massive challenge to find such people in western nations where churches are declining. Its a golden opportunity for fast-growing churches in other parts of the world.
Parker challenged Christians feeling the call of God to the Middle East: As we move through the next thirty years, will you join us in praying and working with the churches in the Middle East?