Collaboration. Partnership. Relationship. Connection
1. the action on working with someone to produce or create something
Words synonymous to col·lab·o·ra·tion: partnership, relationship, connection
I’ve always loved words. Even more than the words themselves, I’ve loved the definitions behind them.
Collaboration. Partnership. Relationship. Connection.
For the last 5 years, these four words have captured our experiences with CCCD.
All different by definition, but synonymous at the same time.
With our CCCD family: we’ve prayed, shed tears, laughed heartedly, witnessed empowerment, endured change, and seen the Lord work through the students, staff, and missionaries of this organization.
As a partner congregation, and an annual short term missions team, we’ve shared over 200 different trip experiences in these past few years, and witnessed transformation in lives of our students, and in the lives of those we serve with at CCCD.
While our teams have poured cement, painted buildings, and have found collaboration through completing work projects; a cornerstone of these week long endeavors has always been found in relationships.
CCCD has become a place where we can experience:
Relationship with others; with staff and students, who continually point us to how Jesus uses His followers to bless those around them.
Relationship with God; where our campuses have become a sanctuary, a place set apart, for each of us to experience Him in a new way.
Relationship with Creation, in which a dirt track around a mango tree in Kingston, or firepit in Knockpatrick leads to oneness with His Earth and His people.
Relationship with ourselves, where each person feels freedom to create space for God to move in and through us.
And each year, these relationships strengthen, grow, and challenge us.
So, if collaboration is the action of working with someone to produce or create something--then these past years have been used to create something that God uses for His Kingdom and for His glory.
In Ephesians 4:4-6, it says:
“There is one body and one Spirit-- just as you were called to one hope when you were called-- One Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, and who is over all and through all and in all.”
As partners, we approach our time at CCCD believing in the unity we have in Christ; and how working to create something together is actually how God calls us to lives like Paul writes about in Ephesians.
As a team, rather than “fixing” or “changing” our partners in ministry-- the view many of short term missions teams, we want to be a team who does LIFE with the ones we come to serve alongside of at CCCD.
To come with :
Opens hearts, to learn from our brothers and sister in Christ.
With the capacity to invest in long-term relationships that reach beyond a 7 day, 168 hour time span.
To experience fellowship, that draws us to one another, and celebrates our individuality in God’s image.
And where encouragement is given to those who are living into the path they’ve been called to.
As our 5th trip returned just three weeks ago, I am again reminded of God’s faithfulness in our partnership with CCCD. I am reminded of the value of relationships, and why our connection to one another allows us to experience something much greater than ourselves.
And my hope for you, is that you’re prompted by the opportunities of partnership with this organization.
That your mind is opened to the chance to learn and invest, to commune and encouraging our brothers and sisters of CCCD.
That you are expectant of the way God could move through you, and this organization to transform the lives of His people and for His Kingdom.
It is my prayer, that you become a team that does life with this organization, a sponsor to a child who is loved and lead by staff of CCCD, are inclined to present to your local congregations or businesses about potential financial support, or simply tell the amazing story that God has woven for CCCD.
Nazareth College-Age Ministry Director, Cedar Falls Iowa
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