Sometimes the best results start with painful experiences. As a newly formed mission agency, World Harvest had just sent its first crop of overseas workers to the field. But in short order they were fighting with each other so hard and so publicly that they embarrassed themselves and were alienating the very people they came to reach. Our founder, Jack Miller, looked at the situation on the ground and came to a startling conclusion: We can't take the gospel to others unless we know it for ourselves first.
In that crucible of brokenness, strife and conflict, the lasting identity of World Harvest was formed. Jack was convinced that "the gospel is the power of God for salvation" and that meant that it was powerful enough even to change Christians! And pastors! And even missionaries who couldn't get along with each other on their team. Jack's belief in the power of the gospel not just to save but also to transform and send us forms the core of World Harvest Mission today.
We believe that the gospel is God's power for salvation in a way can touch every part of each believer's life. The gospel isn't simply the door to a new relationship with God and the promise of eternal life. It is also the power that transforms us to be like more Christ as he increasingly draws us into his own mission to redeem and restore a lost and broken world. This fundamental commitment--that we need the gospel everyday just as much as those we are trying to reach--sets World Harvest apart as a uniquely gospel centered mission.
Today more than ever, World Harvest Mission sees ongoing, daily renewal and sacrificial mission as inseparable parts of one whole response. As we learn to live by the same gospel grace that we are making known to others, we are being equipped for good works to bless those around us with a taste of who God is in places like Sudan, or London, in India or Prague.
And as we struggle with our own unbelief, in our conflict with our teammates, and even as we sometimes forget just how much God loves us, we are always pushed back to the gospel for new forgiveness and strength to renew our calling. Mission work makes us need the gospel more, not less. And the better we know the love of God, the more we want to reach out to others. So our teams are centered on the gospel. We are always renewing mission.
Our continuing pursuit of renewing mission---God renewing us by His grace to reach out with love in the unique ways that God calls every one of us into his work—isn’t just for the "professional" missionary. Every believer can find the power of the gospel at work renewing mission.
That doesn't mean that everyone’s part in God’s mission is going to look the same, though. For some it will mean home, for others it means foreign lands. For some their work in God's mission is quiet, even hidden. Others serve in more visible and public ways. But together God's grace renews us all and sends us all. And as we step out in faith to love, to give, to obey, to go, we see again and again our deep need for the grace in our own lives.
For almost 30 years now WHM has been seeing God’s willingness to use even weak people who believe the power of the gospel to do amazing things. Today our workers evangelize in Prague and Nairobi, plant churches in Prague, Spain and London, work for community development in Sudan and Delhi, run clinics and schools in Uganda, and reach out in love to our enemies for Jesus’ sake in countries we can’t even name for security reasons.
We are working around the world in many places to transform communities and multiply movements of churches.. Currently we send more than 150 missionaries to 14 countries. Our gospel centered discipleship ministries bring renewing grace to churches through leadership mentoring, resources and seminars And by God's grace we have many new opportunities and continue to grow, both in our love for the One who has saved us and as a band of missionaries helping others to know Him, to make Him known.