Start small, dream big

As a Pastor it has been my privilege to meet some of the world’s most amazing people. I have held hands with those who pass through the threshold of pain in the shoes of faith. I have prayed with those who face every danger up to and including death in order to preach the Gospel.  I have witnessed time and time again the alchemy of faith which transforms the base metal of suffering into the gold of hope.

On two occasions I have met people with a visionary zeal of New Testament proportions. One of them was Johan Lukasse, then Director of the Belgian Evangelical Mission. The other was Matthew Frost, Chief Executive of Tearfund, whom I met for the first time today. Like Johan Lukasse, this is a man with a loud vision and a soft voice.

Speaking to a room full of bloggers, he shared his vision for transforming the world through the epicentre of the local church. This man is a tweeter’s dream, with sound bites just rolling off the tongue:

  • We want to be authentic and Christ-centred.
  • How do you reach deep enough to touch the human heart?
  • We want to reach 50 million people through 100,000 local churches.
  • We are doing everything we can to challenge the theology of the church.
  • Development is birthed in the local church and earthed in Scripture.
  • Prayer is the most powerful development intervention.


Matthew recounted the story of his visit to a local church project in Uganda, and could barely contain his (slightly impish) joy when he said “they neither thanked me for anything nor asked me for anything”. Maybe seeing the puzzled faces he explained that this was their story, and therefore there was no need to thank him.

The week before Holy Week is hardly the easiest for a local Pastor to take the day out to dream – but I am so glad I did. I come away inspired once again by the power of a small idea to effect big change.

Thank you, Tearfund