My wife Delma and I celebrated 45 years of mission faith finance on Saturday.
Chin wags are valuable. Our eldest daughter, a lawyer, a wife and mum of two (13 and 10) regularly walks around her Sydney northern suburb and this is when Pop gets a call. The discussion on Friday was on our 45 years of faith finance mission and how we initiated it.
Our four children grew up on this - there was always money for school uniforms, groceries, and 'ear marked' money for chaplaincy travel with the Australian cricketer team.
A philosophy of life is important here as faith finance ministry has been part of the Gospel motif with Jesus. I was always comfortable with faith finance living - and whenever it got a bit tight I asked Delma to pray - something would come in. We counted the pennies. My parents were significant financial supporters of missions. I grew up on this. The norm.
Faith finance process
For us, the process of faith finance - writing to those people we knew - including parent's friends - explaining the nature of our mission and seeking monthly financial support. Then sending a monthly newsletter. It remains the same today. We too financially support faith finance missionaries - always have done. This is the biblical philosophy.
Missions accountant Shirlene Bennett - with us for 40 years - along with two Government reviews / audits. 1998 & 2021. Our mission accounts are fully audited - remittances. receipts, accounts posted to Shirlene every month. There are two parallel lines - following the biblical philosophy (funding) and accountability (mission expenditure).
Delma says faith finance 'philosophy of life' is a specific gifting from the Lord. We're ordinary (I stutter and Delmas 80% low tone deafness). When I became the Australian cricket team chaplain in 1984 (17 years) it was a former train driver who spoke like them. I was earthy and had a young family like numbers of them. I stuttered like a number of former Test cricketers. A man with a passionate love for Jesus. Educated beyond measure with two doctorates. The following 18 years of Life After Cricket followed the same pattern. 35 years in cricket ministry.
I knew how to stand up to challenge as I did as a train driver to recalcitrant station masters. I was a hockey man and wrote 5 books on hockey and a stringer for The Australian as a hockey writer for 24 years to 1994. I was a Board Member of the NSW Hockey Association. Sport dramas 'are us'.
The late Reverend Roger Reid the inaugural chairman of the Sports and Leisure Ministry (SLM) wrote on the reasons behind Heads of Churches supported me in initiating sports chaplaincy way back in 1982.
Mission projects are ear marked giftings. Every mission have projects and our's is no different. Basil Sellers AM is a stalwart supporting our many mission projects.
Mission Projects are separate to our faith finance living. We constantly thank those who provide faith finance and prayer. Yes, we're good at counting pennies.
Every faith finance mission person coins this one philosophical word - Trust.
We're trusted with people's gifts. Why is 'Trust' a philosophical analogy. Go to any supermarket and ask where to find these items –
packet of Trust,
jar of honesty,
container of integrity,
bottle of fulfilment,
box of passion ....
A list of some of the most important things in life !!
The Lord is no man's debtor (Hebrews 11 verse 35)
Dr Mark Tronson - a 4 min video
Chairman – Well-Being Australia
Baptist Minister 45 years
- 1984 - Australian cricket team chaplain 17 years (Ret)
- 2001 - Life After Cricket (18 years Ret)
- 2009 - Olympic Ministry Medal – presented by Carl Lewis
- 2019 - The Gutenberg - (ARPA Christian Media premier award)
Gutenberg video - 2min 14sec
Married to Delma for 45 years with 4 children and 6 grand children