Reach Local: Speaking Through Sign Language
InFaith field staff Thomas and Kristine Rogers reach out through creative ministries such as puppetry, magic, and art on the Oregon coast. One night they were performing for a Good News Club in Woodburn, Oregon. Kristine often uses sign language during their performances and that night was no different. Except that that night, there was a girl in the audience wearing hearing aids.
When Kristine went forward and began to sign the song, the little girl’s whole face lit up. She began to sign along with Kristine, as did her mother and little brother. Afterward, the little girl's mom kept saying over and over again, “Thank you. Thank you for speaking her language!”
As Thomas and Kristine left the church, they saw the girl and her mom talking with the pastor about using sign language in Good News Club in the future. She had gained confidence to use her language to share God's Word!
What language or special gift do you have that, by sharing, could deeply impact someone’s relationship with God?
Candidate Profile: Kim Lokken
Meet one of our candidates, Kim Lokken. Kim is involved in prison ministry in Minneapolis, Minnesota and its western suburbs.
Our prisons and jails are filled with people who are desperate for something different for themselves, but live in fear, helplessness, and hopelessness. They simply don’t know where to turn or what to do. Although correctional facilities offer various programs to help inmates, a staggering 68% return within three years and 77% within five years of their release. It’s clear that something is missing. These people need advocates who offer support, encouragement, community, and life-building connections ‘on the outside’. And they need a rock-solid foundation — whose name is Jesus.
“I want people to know the Truth, the Way, and the Life,” Kim says. “In coming to know Christ, they will find everything they have been looking for!”
Through Kim’s involvement in prison ministry she has become impassioned to also support those reentering society from corrections. She has had people in prison tell her, “I struggle with addiction. I am homeless. And I’m getting out soon.” Those words were a call to greater involvement for Kim. Her God-given vision is to one day offer a place of transitional care to those reentering society from corrections.
Read more about Kim to see if you’d like to partner with her and enable her to continue to lead others to experience the fullness of life that is only found in Jesus Christ.
By Ridge Burns, Executive Director/CEO
I was in a meeting with some of our missionaries recently. It was an amazing group of people. We brought them together to see if there was a common thread in their ministries, so we might create a system that would use that common thread to be more effective in reaching our nation for Christ—which is our hope, our dream, and our mission.
One story sticks out in my mind from that meeting. One of our missionaries is a woman who has ten children, most of them adopted. They live incarnationally in an urban, ethnically diverse neighborhood. We were talking about the hassles of ministry and her big hassle was that the drug dealers on their street would set their water bottles on her car. That just bothered her. She talked about how she had to get over that, because it’s not that big a deal. But in moments of weakness and flesh, it becomes a really big deal to her.
I was sitting there thinking, “I don’t have any problems like that.” I have no drug dealers in my life. I have really good people in my life. I don’t have to spend 50 minutes looking for a parking spot and then the lady next door doesn’t want you to park there because of some unspoken rules in the neighborhood. I was so drawn to their commitment to live in that neighborhood, and the only reason they live there is that God has called them. So, they deal with issues I never have to deal with. They deal with issues that just seem scary. And God uses them in powerful ways.
It was really interesting to watch these missionaries affirm that a walk with Christ on the wild side where they live is hard, and messy, and it’s a battle. I have so much respect for them. I recognize there are many ways that our Lord uses people in different contexts, and that not everyone is called to that work. But everyone is called to be called. What I mean by that is that every Christian, every follower of Christ, has an anointed call on their life that they must live. Whether it’s being a teacher and spending time with students for the purpose of sharing the gospel through friendship, or working in a factory, or working in an office, or going to school, we have a call to be what God calls us to, in order to share the good news.”
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