ABM Pilots Rob Dillingham and Mark Mowery had been trying to make a Pastoral Care Ministry Trip to those pastoring in the Aleutians for several weeks. Up to now their attempts to fly there had been stopped either by weather or scheduling conflicts. After hours of preparation and waiting, their plans, once again, appeared to be thwarted by bad weather.
Just when Rob and Mark had about given up on making the trip, Rob decided to check the weather one more time. This time, Rob saw a break in the weather with several nice days to follow! Both pilots ran home, packed their bags and took off from ABM headquarters.
Nervous about visiting people they had never met and going to a region they’d never flown they proceeded to follow God’s leading.
When God opened this door at the last minute with several days of good weather, it was obvious to them both that He wanted Rob and Mark in the Aleutians to visit these pastors. The good weather was indeed a confirmation from God; removing their doubts about the trip and giving them strength.
ABM Pilot Mark wrote…”When we arrived we were encouraged to share in the pastors’ stories of overcoming personal struggle in order to obey what God has called them to do.” Pastors are not exempt from struggles common to any family; from personal illness, aging spouses, and extreme living conditions to the stresses common to leadership; these church planters and missionaries carry on in sharing Jesus and living out their calling.
They were able to spend time, listen and pray with several pastors who are passionately planting and growing churches and serving their communities in spite of their own personal challenges. Rob and Mark ministered to these pastors offering them encouragement, friendship and time to process how things are going for them personally. Pastoral care is a vital part of helping sustain and disciple church leaders. ABM chooses to send our missionaries to visit “on-field”, in the context in which these leaders live and serve.
ABM Pilot Mark Mowery remarked, “God calls us to persevere, to stay the course. After this trip, I found myself asking, “when hard things come in my life or ministry, will I persevere and stay the course?” Is my calling to this ministry only good as long as things are easy, we all get along, I have plenty of finances, and am in good health? Sometimes there is a time to change ministry or God guides us to do something else because we have finished the task or lessons He had for us but may I never quite or change ministries because it gets difficult. It is in those times that God is getting ready to do His greatest work in us through is power and grace.” -Mark Mowery
Thank you Rob and Mark for your service with ABM! And thank you to those sharing Jesus and loving your communities well in the Aleutian Islands of Alaska. ABM continues stand with, pray and work for Healthy & Thriving Christian Leaders in remote Alaska & Canada.
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