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Warren Reeve: Lighthouse Church Kuwait

Global Church Conference Spotlight:
Warren Reeve: Lighthouse Church Kuwait

As we prepare for the upcoming ‘Global Church Conference’ next April in Hong Kong, we would like to feature leaders from the sponsoring networks. One of those leaders is Warren Reeve, pastor of Lighthouse Church in Kuwait with Missional International Church Fellowship. Learn more about Warren and his passion for international church ministry below.

Q: Tell a bit about your background: where you were born and raised, where you went to school and what you studied.
I was born into a Christian home as the first of four kids.  My parents loved God.  My Dad drove for A.W. Tozer so he knew him personally and requested that Tozer dedicate me as a baby, so on July 15 ,1962 that happened.  I have had incredible mentors through life and ministry beginning at the interdenominational Camp IAWAH.  The Avenue Road Chrisitian & Missionary Alliance church that moved to the Toronto suburbs and became Bayview Glen church (which remains our home church today). The three most influential mentors are Youth Pastor Marv Penner, Ministry Mentor Martin Sanders and Spiritual Director Leighton Ford.

Q: Please share a brief version of how you met Jesus and how God called you into full-time ministry.
God called me to full-time ministry at age 13.  By 18 I had ministered with Teem Missions in 79 and 80 in Bolivia and India respectively. I began preparing through high school, finished early and went to Capernwray in England and Austria. Started my Bachelors or Religious Education at Canadian Bible College when I as asked to lead an evangelistic team to the PSALM fraternity in the the Philippines for a year.  Then started a Masters of Divinity and Canadian Theological Seminary.  Moved to the United States took Leighton Fords Arrow Emerging Leadership development mentoring diploma. Graduated with a Doctorate of Ministry from Gordon Conwell in 1998. Then took the Arrow Executive Leadership development mentoring diploma.

I am married to my junior high sweetheart Debbie Reeve.  We have three grown children and one son-in-law.

Q: Tell us about some (or all) of the places you served and how your ministry path led you to work with international churches.
I started in Canada. I lived in the Philippines for one year.
Got married then we moved to the United States. Before our kids were teenagers and after dispelling diapers we moved to Indonesia for 11 consecutive years where our kids grew up.  Five years ago we moved to Kuwait to join the staff at the Lighthouse.  Within the first month of arriving the Senior Pastor was diagnosed with cancer and passed away within eight months.  Jerry had been the longest serving International Pastor in one place at the time at 27 years.  They called him the Protestant Pope of the Middle East. I was selected to take his place four years ago.  Youch!  It has been an uphill climb…but the snowball is now just beginning to roll down the other side of the hill. Lots to tell here.

Q: Where do feel that the international church is today in terms of opportunity and growth; and where do you see the international church headed in the future?

I see the international church as ‘lawn lights’ and as ‘traffic intersections’. Let me explain.

Lawn lights are used to show the way or display the beauty of a well-groomed garden. Once upon a time electric lawn lights lit up gardens. They were connected via an electrical cord buried beneath the surface of the earth.  Those days are long gone!

Now individual solar powered lights accomplish the same thing without a central control station. Mini solar panels daily draw energy from sun to light the way; energy efficient, more effective, without the overhead and trouble of a switch connected to costly electric power.

International Churches are like solar powered lawn lights. While independent they draw strength from the same source. We show the way to Jesus and parade the power of God in the beauty of his garden.

The International Church is divinely positioned in the center of the diaspora intersection.  People approach the red lights and stop, the yellow lights looking and the green lights to go.  The International Church is poised to direct the way towards Jesus.

People are moving toward God through the crossroads of travel. God is moving people out of earthly temporal homes internally and internationally. At the same time God is drawing people into an eternal heavenly home.  The International Church resides inside the intersection of leaving and arriving.

The International Church is called to lead people towards salvation in Christ because of the situational proximity to people coming and going. When people approach the red, yellow and green lights at the junctions of choice, the International Church is there to show the way.

Q: What do you feel are the biggest challenges facing international churches today?
1. Tribalism
2. Denominationalism
3. Transferred Leadership vs Contextualized Leadership
4.  Pastors that do not know the five fold ministry leadership according to Ephesians.
5.  Lack of training for IC Pastors ….. we are a hybrid…not missionaries but not fully Pastors either…..It is a new calling.
6.  Lack of Denominational support.

Q: What do you feel are the biggest challenges facing international churches today?
The International Church is the intersection of the Global Diaspora.  One in every eight people on the planet are away from home.  300,000,000 are out of country. 700,000,000 are internally displaced.  That means that wandering around the earth are people scattered that need to be gathered, colliding that need to be collecting.  Acts 13:1-3 is the biblical narrative that inspires the story of the missional international church.  Opportunity abounds!

Q: How do you believe that organizations like the Fellowship of European International Churches and the Global International Church Network can help the international church movement today?
* Continue in the attitude of humility that the question comes from.  Let’s learn together.
* Remain teachable.
* Avoid denominationalism
* Link arms with a Global Church for a Global World

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