Leading Voices of Missio Alliance, Part III
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to participate in a learning community with Leading Voice, Dr. Dennis Edwards (introduced on the blog last week). I missed the connection before but he is now pastoring The Sanctuary Covenant Church that Efrem Smith planted in Minneapolis. Today, I have the opportunity to introduce the remaining Leading Voices of Missio Alliance: Dr. Kyuboem Lee and Pastor David Fitch.
Kyuboem Lee was born in Seoul, South Korea and raised in Nairobi, Kenya. His parents were missionaries. He was educated at Wheaton and Westminster, and currently serves as DMin Program Director and Assistant Professor of Missiology at Biblical Theological Seminary, and as general editor of the Journal of Urban Mission. His passion is “to see the global people of God know God and walk with God more fully in his world, and grow in their calling to declare his glory among the nations.” You can find out more about Dr. Lee and his being a “third culture kid” by reading his introduction. Also check out his recent article “Christian Witness in a Time of Anti-Muslim Rhetoric” which begins with the words, “If you are about good Christian witness among Muslims, you will vigorously oppose the current anti-Muslim rhetoric.”
Pastor David Fitch is a church planting pastor who has a passion for theology and the church. He is also a professor of theology, culture and ethics at Northern Seminary. You can find out more about Pastor Fitch’s passion and ministry by reading his introduction. You can also check out over 10 years of his writing and blogging by viewing his new author’s page. I found his most recent article on the Professor Hawkins Controversy at Wheaton College quite interesting.
In my attempt to get a general awareness of who these leaders are, I found it fascinating that these two Leading Voices are both Wheaton graduates from very diverse backgrounds, and both of their recent posts addressed the missional issue of Christianity and perception, response, and relationship to the Muslim community and Islamic faith. I do not believe they are only writing about this topic because its “hot” right now. I recently wrote about a mentor who has been facing this tension and struggle in her home and family for over a decade. If America is truly to live out the nature of her creed “that all men are created equal” and the rights of her citizens to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” and be true to the statements about the “freedom of religion” then as our society grows in diversity, we should expect to see move religious diversity as well. If we are not distracted or hardened of heart, this can be good news for our faithful practice and witness of loving God and loving our neighbor.
The true character of a leader is not how we respond when things are comfortable and everyone looks, thinks, acts, prays, and votes likes us. Our character is shaped and tested when we engage with people who are different, when we are willing to humbly confess our fears and not have our fears rule us, and when we are willing to listen and learn from others even when we don’t understand or agree.