Posted by: Andrea Mullins | 19 February, 2010

Go USA!!

When it comes to the Winter Olympics in Vancouver, I am not an athlete, will never fly through the air on a snowboard, or slide down a mountain at breakneck speeds on a bobsled, or race for my life around an ice skating track. But I am a terrific fan, and a More than Gold Olympic volunteer!

I arrive in Vancouver, Canada, on February 19 to spend a week side-by-side with Christian volunteers from around the world. Our purpose in Vancouver is to be salt and light to athletes, fans, world travelers, and Canadian home folk. With me is my team of 18 whose Olympic spirit is already evident in their willingness to serve. They have left the comfort of home and a nice view of the Olympic venues right in their living rooms to spend a week on the streets serving water and hot chocolate, greeting and meeting, and trading pins. And whatever they do, the message will not change. There is something worth more than gold, and it is found in Jesus Christ. What a week it will be!

New Hope Publishers’ parent company, WMU, has been sending volunteers to the Olympics since 1996 when Atlanta hosted the Summer Olympics. That was my first opportunity to represent WMU at the Olympics, and since that year I’ve led our teams to serve in Sydney, Salt Lake City, Athens, Turin, and now Vancouver.  In Sydney we worked in an official Olympic visitors center that hosted an Olympic Torch, an Aboriginal art exhibit, and a coffee house. We visited with people who came to hear the cultural programs and musical entertainment on stages outside the center. In Athens we visited hundreds of businesses with gifts and a witness, put on puppet shows, and staged large entertainment events. In Salt Lake City we worked in an inner-city ministry where we offered a free clean toilet and free water to both the homeless and wealthy government leaders from around the world. In Salt Lake City, we also hosted coffee houses and hung out in the pin trading tents. In Turin, Italy, we rode the trains to the Olympic venues and captured audiences with clowning and face painting.

Hundreds of volunteers are already in Vancouver. They are witnessing God at work as they lead people to Christ through their service at train depots and water stations. From chaplains in the Olympic Village to child-care providers at special events, volunteers are using their skills to leave a lasting impression of Christ’s love in Vancouver.

Will you pray for us this week? Please share your prayer thoughts in the comments for this post. Here are a few ideas for prayer:

  • Protection for every volunteer as well as the athletes and fans coming from around the world.
  • Awareness of opportunities and immediate obedience to His voice.
  • Influence on city leaders, fans, and Canadians
  • Reflection of Christ in our words, attitudes, and actions.
  • Opportunities to use our gifts and skills for the gospel.
  • Openness to engage other cultures.
  • Boldness to take a stand for Christ believing He has indeed claimed the victory.

Yes, I’ll be attending the women’s hockey semifinals, and I’ll be watching snowboarders win gold, but pray that these experiences and others will be enjoyed not only as the awesome sports events that they are, but as places where someone is searching for the Good News we have come to bring.

So watch for us. We’ll be there, and because you are praying many will discover there truly is something worth more than gold. It is found in Jesus Christ.

New Hope author Tom Blackaby, The Family God Uses, has also penned a prayer guide that the More than Gold team will be using throughout their trip. More information on the prayer guide can be found here.

Go USA!

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Responses

  1. Sorry, but GO CANADA!

  2. How was the trip for the WMU volunteers? Were you able to support the Georgians or Joannie? I don’t know how close the WMU volunteers were able to get to offer support in these difficult circumstances. I’m so glad there were loving hearts in the area for all these people even if you couldn’t minister right to them. I’d love to hear the stories of connection.


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