October 2021 – February 2022 Moffitt Update
Volume 46, Issue 1
Please forgive the lapse in my communication since my last update in October 2021. The combination of Covid recovery and a mild heart attack since the last update has had an impact on my level of motivation that I did not expect. Still, I should have written, and I’m sorry for the lapse.
Let’s start with the attack. I was recovering from a mild bout with Covid which I reported in my last update written on October 2nd. On November 11th I was going to bed and felt pain in my left arm and lower left jaw. Recognizing those as potential symptoms of a heart attack, and at the encouragement of the local hospital’s phone advisor, I went to the hospital to check it out. They kept me overnight and placed two stints in my heart the next morning – fortunately through a vein in my arm. I was able to go home the next day. Diagnosis? Heart disease but otherwise no comorbidity. My surgeons told me that my condition was genetic and that I needed to continue doing whatever I was doing since most similar patients have multiple comorbidities. Recovery has been without complications but I find my level of energy somewhat decreased. It is coming back but slower than I would like.
Harvest is now in its 41st year of Ministry. As you can imagine, this is an important milestone for me. As I reflect on these forty completed years and think of what I have observed, I am aware of several core vocational/ministry concepts that have been foundational to any positive impact God has alowed. I have imperfectly abided by these concepts, but have intentionally tried to see them as the plumb-line/standard for ministry. These include:
Growth and influence in the world of Christian missions through Harvest has been organic. I have had a plan but have worked from the plan rather than being tied to it. This has enabled me to more easily adapt to the realities discovered in the journey.
1. Though Harvest has impacted how local churches see and carry out being ambassadors of God’s Kingdom in 30+ countries, that influence has not been so much the result of intentional expansion but by God’s bringing interested others who ask us to share what we have learned.
2. The resources needed for these forty years have not come via creative development strategies but by God’s bringing his provision through his people.
3. The practice of financial integrity is essential to His mission.
4. Social transformation from brokenness to the Biblical concept of shalom comes not through human brilliance but through alignment to God’s revealed principles of human relationships with Himself, others and the physical creation. Yes, God uses human initiative but the genesis of that initiative is his. In other words, this “shalom” is ultimately a consequence of divine intervention rather that human initiative.
5. Faith that God rewards obedience – whether or not we see that reward – is essential to endurance and effectiveness.
6. Seeking visibility for personal or institutional prominence is a huge detriment to true impact.
New Executive Leadership
Julian Gibb is our new Executive Director. He, his wife, Duffy, and two delightful daughters come to us with a solid academic and pastoral background. After graduating with a degree in Business, he went to Oxford where he completed a diploma in Biblical and Theological Studies, and then to Regent College, Canada, where he earned his Master of Divinity. I first got to know Julian when he was serving as one of the pastors of our home church in Phoenix. While there we both discovered our mutual interest in serving together. Julian joined Harvest in January of 2021. By October he, I, and our board felt he was ready to officially take responsibilities as our CEO. I retain the role of President and Chairman of our Board of Directors.
|Ministry In a New Context
As you know, Judy and I moved to California in November 2020. The Lord provided precisely the circumstances for this to happen: Julian’s interest in joining Harvest; The Board’s permission for me to increasingly move into a role of training/mentoring and serving on boards and programs of related organizations to share the experience of the last 40 years at Harvest; The simultaneous sale of our Phoenix home and identification of an affordable home in California near our oldest son and family; And the homegoing of Judy’s Phoenix-based mom – the last of our four parents to survive, and for whom Judy had significant responsibility.Since then, key ministry activities have included:
1. Collaborating with Julian as he takes responsibility as Executive Director.
2. The production of 9 videos that respectively summarize the content of each of Harvest’s key curricula. Link for completed videos: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLxTXTlrA1TVlu4qx0bAb7WtzpTPy8SNeR
3. Weekly mentor relationships via zoom with 10 individuals in Asia, Africa, and the Americas.
4. Teaching our Harvest curriculum:
a. Oct 25-29 – Zoom training of D. Min. Students from N. E. India with East Asian Theological Seminary
b. Jan 24 – Zoom training for international group that meets through a leader in Malaysia
c. Feb 9-11 – Zoom training for Youth with a Mission school in Baja, Mexico
d. Mar 1-5 – Zoom training of pastors for Asian Access in Mongolia
e. Invitations to teach in-person this year at several conferences in South America but these are on hold until I receive clearance from my primary care doctor to travel.
5. Hosted 11 Radio/Video interviews for “The Kingdom and It’s Stories.” See following link https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/16J5f0HitXzIKZGiyrL0Aep1ScrCeLi82W1TD6Gx5gRw/edit?usp=sharing
6. Continued and newly assumed board and program roles in four other international ministries: Disciple Nations Alliance; Trinity Education Global; Decade of Discipleship of World Evangelical Alliance; and Global Council of Nations.
Thank you: Judy and I want to thank you for your continued support as we make this transition. I am so thankful for the strength and ability to continue to serve our King in a truly exciting and expanded way.
Under the Same Wings,
Bob and Judy
Last night I was lying in bed after I sent my Oct – Feb update. Staring into the night I realized that I had not included what has probably been for me the key vocational/ministry concept in my list of seven. Why didn’t I include it? Perhaps because in my mind I assumed it was so obvious that it didn’t need stating. If so, I was wrong. It needs to be stated. So, I am sending this addendum. Here it is:
It is essential to have a clear vision of the end objective. In comparison, all of the other concepts are mere mechanics to reach the end goal and/or objective. Why? Without a clear vision of the end purpose, or reality to which God has called you, it is difficult, if not impossible, to plan a way forward.
In Harvest we have had many opportunities and directions to take the ministry. How does one choose? Unless you know where you want to head you may choose what looks “shiny” or “popular” or “the current mission fad” instead of the best way forward. If you clearly know what you have been called to do, you choose what best enables you to reach the goal.
For Harvest, our vision, our call is clear and has been from the beginning. It is to equip/disciple local church leadership to equip/disciple their people to witness to, or to practically demonstrate, God’s love and grace in their communities with local resources. How we choose to do that depends on what we believe is the most effective and efficient way to reach that goal in a given context. There may be many good things we could do, but choose not to because they are not the clearest/straightest path to the end purpose.
In short, the overlying vocational/ministry concept for me in the last 40 years is a clear vision of the goal/purpose.
OK, now I have said it and I feel at rest!
PS: So you don’t have to go back to yesterday’s update, here are the seven concepts I mentioned:
- Growth and influence in the world of Christian missions in our generation has been organic. I have had a plan but have worked from the plan rather than being tied to it. This has enabled me to more easily adapt to the realities discovered in the journey.
- Though Harvest has impacted how local churches see and carry out being ambassadors of God’s Kingdom in 30+ countries, that influence has not been so much the result of intentional expansion but by God’s bringing interested others who ask us to share what we have learned.
- The resources needed for these forty years have not come via creative development strategies but by God’s bringing his provision through his people.
- The practice of financial integrity is essential to His mission.
- Social transformation from brokenness to the Biblical concept of shalom comes not through human brilliance but through alignment to God’s revealed principles of human relationships with Himself, others and the physical creation. Yes, God uses human initiative but the genesis of that initiative is his. In other words, this “shalom” is ultimately a consequence of divine intervention rather that human initiative.
- Faith that God rewards obedience – whether or not we see that reward – is essential to endurance and effectiveness.
- Seeking visibility for personal or institutional prominence is a huge detriment to true impact.
Thanks for reading,
Please note our new snail-mail address:
7125 E Sahuaro Dr.
Scottsdale, AZ 85254
I think that I may be in a unique position to be able to draw some attention to the central focus of your vision.
I do hope we can regain our connection after so many years
My email has been recorded.
Grateful Graham (Kerr)
Your life and your message have been so key to who I am and my walk with the Lord! Thank you for your dedication and friendship.