So far, 2020 has been a massive year for Vision. Insecurity, uncertainty, and fear can lead people to guard their resources carefully. But you knew how many Australians needed messages of hope to overcome those things. 20Twenty’s Neil Johnson caught up with our CEO, Phil Edwards, last week, to chat about how you’ve helped us reach the people who need us most right now.
In March when the potential impact of Covid-19 became clear, Vision staff met to decide what the next steps should be. And one of the things that we said we need to do is we need to stay in contact with the Lord, shall I say, just to continue to keep our needs in front of him, and keep ministering to people.”
“I’m so pumped up that as I look back over what’s been a pretty turbulent time, we’ve seen the hand of God in continuing to supply what we need, and in particular the money that we need to keep operating. Because it’s such an important thing that we do, in helping people every day to keep focused on God, rather than focused on the problems that are so frequent and common around us.”
Vision was well-prepared to support people through the struggle of lockdown, which some of us are still enduring. Just before he appeared on 20Twenty, Phil had received a comment from Judy in Frankston, who said she couldn’t start her day without the Word for Today.
It keeps me in touch with the Lord, and is a daily reminder that the present circumstances of Covid-19 are temporary, and I will overcome by the grace of God. The best is yet to come.
As Phil points out, that sounds vastly different from the helplessness people without faith must be feeling. “All we do is we help people like Judy, and many others around Australia, to look up, to look to God, to be reminded that he is there, and to help them to understand what’s going on around the world through that biblical point of view.”
With churches closed around Australia, Neil and Phil discussed how what we’re doing is a kind of pastoral care. “What does a Pastor actually do? They help you. They guide you. Sometimes you might go to them when you’ve got a challenge. They help you to understand.”
Phil says Vision is doing all those things for people every day, in enough ways to reach a lot of different audiences.
“Even just this morning, the songs that we’ve played have been absolutely peppered with the Word of God, and with reminders that we can lay our burdens at the foot of the cross, that there is a bigger picture than what we hear and see in this narrative that is thrust on us all the time, whether it’s through other media or it’s people.”
“Over the years”, Phil said, “we’ve grown incredibly. We have over 700 points of broadcast around Australia. And even that’s a bit of a challenge for us, as to how we measure where our coverage is, because there are so many people engaging with us now through the internet. And you can do that anywhere, not just in Australia, but around the world.”
“So our challenge, moving forward, is how do we continue to reach people, and continue to Faithfully connect with them and minister to them in that pastoral sense. And we’re absolutely dedicated to that.”
“And I just want to say thank you. For those listening who are supporters, and part of the Vision family, thank you so much. You empower us to keep going on. And I personally value a number of you. Maybe there are some listening right now who have written me a personal note, a card or something, that have encouraged myself and the team to keep going through the challenges that we face.”