Thanks to an AMAZING team from Hill City Church in Rock Hill, South Carolina we were well prepared for the start of our “Mad About Science” summer! From left: Charles “Char Cam” Olsen, Laura Zellmer, Andy and Ellie Stager. Also on the team (not pictured) were Doug and Cindy Stelzig and Fred Shope. Special thanks to MTW, (Mission to The World), for sending us such talented summer volunteer teams!
By Andy Stager
My parents said they never wanted their kids to outnumber them, and so they had two.
My wife Ellie was one of four, and she was number three. If her parents had decided not to let their kids outnumber them, she wouldn’t exist! Needless to say, she doesn’t believe in the “two kid” limit, so we have three.
However, as it turns out, there is something to the being outnumbered concept. If I take one of our kids out and my wife has the other two, she often remarks how much easier it is for her to manage. I don’t know the ratio of tutors to students here at Operation Exodus, but I can tell you this. The “being outnumbered” principal does apply!
Once we arrived, we learned very quickly what you tutors manage on a daily basis. You get something good going with a student or two on one end of the classroom, only to have an argument break out on the other side of the room. On the way to the park, there’s always two or three playing around, seeming as if they wouldn’t mind getting hit by a bus. The Exodus tutors are definitely going up against the “rule of two,” every day.
There are several places in the Scriptures where God deals directly with the problem of being outnumbered.
In the book of Judges, Gideon went into battle with far too many soldiers, at least from God’s perspective. Gideon thought, “Hey, the more the merrier!” But, the Lord whittled down his army until he had only 300 soldiers.
It’s not the size of your army that counts, but the amount of dependence on God you need to face the battles ahead. When the kids and parents, staff and volunteers, are coming at you, they may not always understand the pressures you face. Take heart. Even as you are outnumbered, He wants you to open your eyes to what’s invisible, but all around you. The “Lord of hosts,” in fact means the “ruler of armies.” He will surround you, and support you in your work.
We know of someone else who was outnumbered. Folks from his hometown thought Christ was a joke. Some thought he was evil. Religious leaders were lined up, wanting him dead. In this once instance, God did not send an invisible army of angels to protect Him. Despite this, Jesus trusted in God the Father.
So friends, when you feel outnumbered, just remember you are never alone. Paul promises that your labor is never in vain. In fact, He is at work making sure that everything you do counts for something, something that will last forever.
Church planter Andy Stager was the founding pastor of Hill City Church. This month he and wife Ellie and their three children are moving to Seoul South Korea.