George Wieland at the Micah Global Consultation 

“Your will be done on earth.” This was the abiding impact that I carried with me from the Micah Global consultation last month. I had spent over a week in Manila in the Philippines with 450 participants from 65 nations who had gathered to talk and network with others who share the conviction that God’s mission is integral, comprising word and deed, compassion and advocacy.

I was challenged by the courage and resilience of Christians who practice costly compassion in contexts of staggering need, speak and act against injustice and corruption in their governments, and call their churches to more authentic kingdom life and witness.  I sensed a shift from concern with building the hardware of institutions to recognizing that it is in the software of culture that power for transformation is found. “Change happens only within the narratives of a culture.” (Melba Padilla Maggay) At a time in history when the hardware of democracy increasingly seems to be run by the software of authoritarianism, we need to know the story we are part of, tell it with passion and live it with integrity as participants in the gracious, mysterious, transforming mission of God.