Mark explains why we are committed to giving away resources and what to expect from this movement.
Sandy Millar wrote about John Wimber:
‘His generosity of spirit was a model for us. I don’t think we had fully appreciated the concept that what God gives you is to be given away. ‘You get to give to get – to give to get – to give,’ John said. [His influence and Legacy – Pytches, P.285]:
In the UK & Ireland we often hear John Mumford talking about his time in the USA with John Wimber during the early 1980’s. He tells how, before he returned to the UK at the end of his first visit to Anaheim, Wimber took John to their Anaheim Vineyard warehouse, which was stocked floor to ceiling with stacks of tapes and various training materials. Wimber heaped these wonderful resources upon an eager John Mumford, as much as he could carry, and sent him back to London. If he could have carried more he would have been given more, and indeed taken more!
These tools were freely given, to help train and equip John Mumford, who eagerly absorbed these gifts upon returning to the UK and has ever since readily passed on what God has given him.
Our heritage, in the Vineyard, is based on giving away what God has given us. We’ll often talk about ‘giving away our best’ because, after all, none of what we have is ours, we are constantly stealing from God. And so we give it away and bless others in the process.
The role of technology
Previously we have always had to charge for our National Leaders’ Conference recordings, for example. After all, the CD’s cost money; their reproduction costs money; even the boxes to put them in cost money. And, of course, the money to pay for these has to come from somewhere other than the collection plate!
Now, however, given new technology, the provision and distribution of resources is simpler (and cheaper) than ever before. Booklets can be turned into PDFs; conference recordings can be converted into mp3s; articles can be reproduced as online reading; insights can be filmed and uploaded onto the web.
If you have an internet connection, then you can be resourced, and this especially applies to the Third World and many emerging nations, who can benefit from our resources when they are freely given. This matters to us as an international movement. There are Vineyard churches planted in almost every continent – and finding resources isn’t always the main priority for a new plant, although it is often needed and always welcomed.
What an exciting time this is and what a position of responsibility we have!
From Pencil to Pixel
When we sat down to plan this website, it was agreed that resources would need to play a key role.
We have a rich heritage and now in many cases the baton is now being passed (or has already been passed) to those who aren’t ‘first-generation-vineyarders’. We have much to learn from our seasoned leaders, so we have undertaken many months of work planning the website, and working out how resources might fit into it.
To start with, we’ve been filming Insights from leaders across the movement (and indeed from friends of the movement); these have then been edited into short 2-3 minute bitesize films, so that they are easy to watch, absorb and share.
Vineyard Records UK have begun a long-term project of working through their back catalogue of conference recordings, and converting these from cassette to mp3, in order that we can give away these resources. Our thanks go to the team there for undertaking this project so that the wider church can benefit.
Vineyard Resources in the USA have also been incredible, digging through their archives and sharing what they have, so that we can give it away. Equally, what we have has also been shared with them. We’re not precious about our resources, but we are serious about getting them out into the public domain.
The result of this is that you will see many resources duplicated on both of our websites. The Vineyard family is a wonderful unit to be a part of, and working across the time zones with Vineyard Resources has been an encouraging and uplifting experience for all of us.
In the UK & Ireland we’ve also been trawling through cardboard boxes, lofts, book shelves, filing cabinets and any manner of dusty corners; rediscovering previously unpublished or forgotten resources – some dating back as far as the early eighties – which are now about to see the light of day.
We are really delighted that the give-away of these Vineyard resources is on a scale that we’ve never seen before. We are committed to continuing this process of finding and sharing good quality Vineyard resources; so expect more of them, both current and previously published. Not all of these resources are on this website yet, the scale of this task means that we are still digitalising many of these resources from cassettes and old printed materials, but we will continually publish both old and new resources.
On rare occasions we will charge for resources (such as a kindle book), and in these instances you are paying for the convenience of having a kindle book on a kindle device (for example); but where we do this, we will also provide a free PDF version as well.
We freely give these resources so that God’s church will be trained, equipped, and released for works of service. This website is only the start, we will continue to look at new and developing platforms in order to reach more people in the format that suits them.
“. . . to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up.” Ephesians 4:12 (NIV)
So enjoy these resources, digest them, share them, ponder on them. We hope they will encourage you and be tools that you can constantly make use of. They are not toys or trophies but are indeed tools, designed to make us all more equipped and effective in the work that God has called us to do.