Some Thoughts on Accountability

We talked about accountability today at church. It makes me think of my cute little neighbor back when we lived in Colorado Springs in the mid-nineties. He must have been just three years old when he came to visit and told me he was learning RESPONSIBILITY. Such a long word for a little guy! Res-pon-si-bi-li-ty! It was hard for him to pronounce it, but he learned it. Today he is an awesome young man! God bless you, Bradley! God bless his mother who taught him well! God bless his dad!

Accountability is the responsibility we have towards God and our fellow man.

Here is a quote I picked up from the sermon today: Accountability is the glue that ties commitment to results.

We are all accountable to God.

So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.
Romans 14:2 ESV

When we stand before God there will be no excuses. We will not be able to put the blame on anybody. It will be just me/you and God.

For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. 8 For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord both of the dead and of the living.

10 Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God; 11 for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.” 12 So then each of us will give an account of himself to God. Romans 14:7-12 ESV

Jesus said that we will give an account for every careless word we speak.

“I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, 37 for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
Matthew 12:36,37 ESV

To be accountable is to take responsibility, like my cute neighbor Bradley was learning. Taking responsibility for our actions!

This morning I read an interesting account of what happened to Miriam, Moses’ sister, because of her jealous actions. It made me reflect on the seriousness of speaking against a servant of God.

Miriam and Aaron spoke against their brother Moses and asked if God had only spoken through him. Had he not spoken through them also?

The Bible tells us Moses was a very meek man, more than anybody else. God was not pleased with Aaron and Miriam, and he rebuked them saying,

“Hear my words: If there is a prophet among you, I the Lord make myself known to him in a vision; I speak with him in a dream. 7 Not so with my servant Moses. He is faithful in all my house. 8 With him I speak mouth to mouth, clearly, and not in riddles, and he beholds the form of the Lord. Why then were you not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?”
Numbers 12:6-8 ESV

How were they made accountable for their actions? “The anger of the Lord was kindled against them,” and Miriam became leprous. Moses had to plead with God to forgive them and to heal Miriam. God heard his plea, but Miriam had to be shut outside the camp for seven days.

“Touch not my anointed ones, do my prophets no harm!”
Psalm 105:15 ESV

King Saul hated David. One time he took three thousand chosen men to pursue him. Saul went into a cave to relieve himself, not knowing that David and his men were sitting in the cave. David’s men saw this as his opportunity for revenge. But David did not want to touch God’s anointed. What he did was cut off a corner of Saul’s robe. But he felt remorse for doing this and said to his men,

“The Lord forbid that I should do this thing to my lord, the Lord’s anointed, to put out my hand against him, seeing he is the Lord’s anointed.” 1 Samuel 24:6 ESV

David persuaded his men not to attack Saul.

I have chosen “serve and obey” as the theme for this year—really, it’s the theme for my life. To serve and obey Jesus has been my passion as far back as I can remember. I’m accountable to God for my actions. The scariest part is that we will give an account for every careless word we speak.

We need to talk about this another time, about our careless words. We throw words around as if the wind would take them and blow them away forever. But that’s not the case.

I’m glad that I have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ!

He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2 ESV

I must repent time and again for careless words. Many times our words hurt someone, and we don’t even know it. Let’s make this week very special in being accountable for what we speak. May we serve and obey Jesus with wholesome words out of our mouth.

Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.
Colossians 4:6 ESV

This is the verse that inspired me to write the Salt and Pepper story. I wanted to talk about gracious speech. It has evolved into a story like the “Energizer,” that keeps going, and going, and going!

Have you checked it out? This week it’s chapter 22. In Spanish we are up to 30!

Welcome to read about Salt and Pepper with Daisy, and the Treasure Club at Miss Beatrice’s house.

SALT AND PEPPER STORY

Let me just put a period here. Or else, I will keep going, and going, and going. May you have a blessed week and a good start of February!

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A Heart-Warming Surprise

In the 1970’s my father started a Bible school in the city of Huancayo, Peru. It turned into Bethel Bible Institute. One of the students was Julio Rojas Flores.

In the 1980’s the Shining Path terrorist were attacking the area were Julio lived. He and his family had to flee, because they didn’t want to join the terrorist movement. When Julio came to us at the Bible Institute asking for advice on how to proceed, it was not easy. I don’t remember all the details but for some reason Julio had to go back. We all gathered around him to pray. I felt like we were telling Julio, “Go back and die!” because we knew he would not join the terrorists and they would probably kill him. That was the first time I heard Dad cry. It was a desperate and loud cry because of the plight of a brother in Christ!

Years later, when there was no more threats from the terrorists, Julio returned to pastor a church in Ayacucho. He is still working tirelessly there. I see his posts on Facebook about the different villages he visits teaching the Word.

This morning I got the most heart-warming surprise I’ve had in a long time. Julio has made a video in memory of my father, Pedro Anderas as he was known in Peru.

Such a treasure, to remember the man whose only desire was to serve others. In the video my father mentions the Bible verse that moved him to do just that.

So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. Galatians 6:10

The video is in Spanish and the Kichua language and has some of the typical music for the area in the Andes Mountains where Julio ministers.

Video in memory of Missionary Pedro Anderas

https://youtu.be/ssJq1fePHO8

Per Anderas as a young missionary doing what he loved most,
teaching God’s Word

My father’s motto for the Bible Institute was to prepare servants. Young people would come and ask what kind of diploma they would get. “You will graduate as a servant of Christ,” would be the answer they got.

The first graduating class chose as the name DOULOS as their theme. Doulos is a Greek word that means slave, bondman, servant.

I am so glad that I chosen SERVE AND OBEY as my theme for this year. I was reminded today of the heritage that Dad left me. He was a servant, whose greatest desire was to do good. In the above video he was 86 years of age. He told the people that in Sweden when they reach retirement age they don’t work anymore. “But I can’t do that,” he said. As long as he had strength, Dad wanted to continue serving the people God had called him to.

My mother had a missionary calling since childhood, but she didn’t want to be a missionary. When she met Dad she was excited because she was sure he would not be a missionary. But every morning when Dad had his prayer time, he would see a map of South America before him, and he understood what it meant.

One day, Mom asked him if he had thought about being a pastor, because for her that could compensate for not following a missionary calling. “No,” said Dad, “but God has called me to be a missionary.” That settled it.

They had fifty and a few more years together, and their life was devoted to serving others. I will be sharing stories about their missionary life of service in the coming days.

Just as they obeyed the calling to serve God, I want to come to the age of 86 and say the same thing as Dad: “Others stop working, but I can’t do that!” As long as there is breath, I want to serve Jesus!

May you have some heart-warming surprise! Blessings by the bushels! Have a wonderful day!

Service and Obedience

Half of January is gone. I feel like I’ve lost a big piece of 2018. I like to start the year with my theme, but we don’t rule over unexpected things that happen. As you know from my previous blog, the year ended with the loss of my father and being hit with the flu.

The loss of my father is his gain. The funeral is over. My youngest brother officiated. It was a cold day; everyone was shivering at the grave site. Somebody remembered how it was at my mothers funeral, right after 9/11. If you remember there were minutes of silence on the Friday after. It happened exactly at the moment my mother’s casket was lowered into the grave. Very impressive.

If Mom and Dad would have been looking down on Dad’s funeral, Mom surely would have said to him, “They didn’t do it for you! There were moments of silence when I was lowered into the ground!”

I can picture them having this discussion. Somebody in our family thought of the “joke.” It lightened the mood on that very cold January day in Vrigstad, Sweden. Now Mom and Dad are happily united, awaiting the resurrection and the meeting of all the saints for the great Supper of the Lamb! I’ll be there! I couldn’t be at their funerals, but I’ll see them again!

As I’m awaiting the day, I will continue my tradition of picking a theme for every new year. It’s a little late in coming, but here it is!

As I was reading the book of Joshua by the end of last year and came to the proclamation of the people of Israel about serving and obeying God, I had a strong desire to choose SERVE AND OBEY as my theme for 2018.

And the people said to Joshua, “The Lord our God we will serve, and his voice we will obey.” Joshua 24:24

 

As a backdrop I have the commands Moses gave the people.

“And now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments and statutes of the Lord, which I am commanding you today for your good?” Deuteronomy 10:12,13

Close to the end of his life, Joshua reminded the people of the same thing.

“Only be very careful to observe the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded you, to love the Lord your God, and to walk in all his ways and to keep his commandments and to cling to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” Joshua 22:5

This is what Moses the servant of the Lord commanded:

  • love the Lord your God
  • walk in all his ways
  • keep his commandments
  • cling to him
  • serve him with all your heart and with all your soul

As you can see, I like to use my hands to remember things. What God required of the people of Israel fits in a hand. The same requirements are for us, and they fit with my theme.

Use this method to teach children. Maybe you are a parent. Teach these commands to your children. Maybe you are a teacher. Teach the to your students. Maybe you are just you. Teach them to yourself!

Micah 6:8  What does the Lord require of you but

  • to do justice
  • to love kindness
  • to walk humbly with your God

Would you like to join in with me on making this a year of service and obedience?

We will talk more another day. I am now preparing lessons for the children on the adventures of faith with Moses and Joshua, 20 lessons to inspire obedience. Sorry, they are in Spanish!

Our Lord and Savior gave us the example:

“For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Mark 10:45

Have a wonderful week!

In Memory of a Beloved Father and Friend

Father, daddy, friend, hero, pappa, papito… they say in Sweden that a dear child has many names. My world is empty; I don’t have the man who shaped my life anymore. He was not just my Dad. He was my friend, my partner in mission work for many years, my hero throughout my life.

Per Hugo Anderås did not want to be called hero. He was the faith hero in my life. He was an example to me and my siblings of what it means to live a selfless life, a life in service to God.

As a child I did not appreciate Dad as I should. I thought he was too strict! But soon enough I began to appreciate this. Having a father who led me to find God’s way is a legacy that cannot be measured in gold. And that he was strict helped to keep me on the straight and narrow.

We used to dress up in Peruvian costumes
for our mission services.

Dad was not a people person. That was my Mom’s strong side. Sometimes he was harsh in expressing himself, but he meant well. He had problems with contacts, but his heart was in the right place. Thanks to his selfless love, many people in the Peruvian Andes have been richly blessed by his missionary endeavors.

In 1948, Dad, Mom and I left Sweden for a missionary life in Chile. In 1956, we arrived in Peru as the first Swedish missionaries. From Arequipa we moved to Tarma, and later to Huancayo, where Mom and Dad spent most of their lives. In addition to planting the church, Dad established a Bible institute, a home for children whose parents were in prison, organized children and youth camps, helped single mothers, had clean water installed in a poor neighborhood, opened feeding stations, etc.

My Hero Father feared the Lord and delighted in His Commands. I am most thankful because he taught me to fear God and delight in honoring God’s Commands.

Many times I’ve asked myself, how come I was so privileged to have missionary parents, more than that Christian parents? I don’t have words enough to thank God. Dad hoped to reach 100, but he was given 97 years! I will not be able to attend his funeral but let me leave here some of my memories.

What was the best thing about my Dad? That he led me to know the best Father in the universe, my Heavenly Father. The older I get the deeper grows my gratitude for being born into a Christian home and having received a father whose mind was set on proclaiming God’s love. Dad was a young man when he came to know Jesus.

These are a few of all the things that I will always remember and cherish about my father:

ROLE MODEL
His life as a true follower of Christ has been a role-model for me. One thing that impressed me very much years ago, was when Dad were slandered. I thought he should defend himself, but he said that he would just leave it in God’s hands, and that truth would prevail. The people that were planning on having his blood run down Main Street got the shorter straw. Dad lived to be 97!

Whoever walks in integrity walks securely, but he who makes his ways crooked will be found out. Proverbs 10:9

Love, honesty, sincerity, generosity, patience, joy, faith, humility… these are some of the features I saw in my father, but most of all integrity. He could be harsh, and at times, kind of blunt. He said what he meant and meant what he said! He always did what was right, but sometimes he didn’t do it exactly right!

FRIEND
I love that Dad was my friend. When I was fifteen and Mom worked as a house-mother at a boarding school for missionary kids, I stayed home and “took care” of him. I loved it! I think that’s when we built our friendship. It all started when he lost confidence in me (because I had gotten a boyfriend). He told me I had to rebuild the confidence, and in rebuilding it, I built a friendship.

If you wonder about the boyfriend thing, keep in mind that my parents were “old-fashioned” Swedes and were not used to the American custom of “dating.” At the time we were attending an American school in the jungles of Peru.

FAITH-BUILDER
Dad taught me to have faith in God, to trust him unconditionally. For that I am most thankful. I have seen him do missionary ministry by faith, building and constructing, helping the needy, and trusting God for every penny. I’ve admired him many times and I am glad to follow in his footsteps.

DISCIPLINARIAN
Dad did a good job as disciplinarian. Of course, as a kid I didn’t like it. He was too strict! Now I appreciate it. I don’t know if I ever got spanked, but he did it with bare hand on bare butt. Sometimes we’d have to go to bed without food, or just go to bed in the middle of the afternoon. My sister Ingrid said one time that she’d rather get a spanking and be able to go out and play.

SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER
When we started a church in Arequipa, Dad was my teacher. The interesting thing is that thirty years later, I would come to the United States to work on revising and renewing the curriculum Dad had used back then! What twists and turns life takes!

BIBLE TEACHER
I have been his student in Bible schools he led and I had the privilege of working together with Dad as a fellow-teacher in the Bethel Bible Institute he founded in Huancayo, Peru. And I have listened to uncountable Bible studies at church with Dad as a teacher.

PASTOR AND MISSIONARY
My greatest experience with Dad as my pastor is when he helped me give my heart to Jesus as a five or six-year-old. He was my pastor as a child and as a teen-ager, and then later when my late husband and I worked with him, and Bengt was the co-pastor.

My first great memory of Dad and I in a missionary endeavor was when he took me on a journey to the jungle, far from the main roads, with just paths for mules and walking. I was thirteen and he looked so young people thought I was his wife. We had a hard time convincing a lady that I was his daughter. Of course, as a missionary, I was with Mom and Dad since I was two years of age and they took me to Chile.

COLABORERS IN CHRIST
Dad and I were co-laborers in Christ. We worked together in Tarma, when he was building a church there. I worked together with Mom and Dad in starting a church in Huancayo. We have co-labored in the Bible Institute I’ve mentioned above. Dad was not only my father and friend, but we worked together for the sake of Christ.

TRANSLATOR
This was a hat that Dad wore with all honors. Since the beginning of the 90’s I’ve had a freelance translation ministry. Dad helped me very much to keep it going and he helped us stay alive as a family because we all depended on that extra income. When Mom and Dad lived in Wisconsin we had “Branch 2” of Royal Palm Translations. I cherish that memory!

TYPIST
Not only has Dad helped me with translations but for a few years he was a very prolific typist. All the materials I had written over the years and that I started to publish on my Spanish web sites he typed. He has typed at least 160 lessons and for sure 100 stories at least. It was sad when his eye-sight failed him and we could no longer have that working relationship. With Dad helping me, he helped so many others.

CARPENTER
When Dad as a young man told his mother that he would become a missionary, she said, “How are you going to be a missionary? You cannot build a house?” He couldn’t, but he learned! He did a lot of constructions over the years! A carpenter father is what all his children probably remember very well!

 

Mom and Dad starting one of the many building
projects during their missionary journey

When I was a kid Dad made me a dresser with each drawer a different color. When that dresser was “lost” due to sad circumstances, he made a replica, in the United States, a little dresser that now has an honored place in my home. I love it! Dad made the changing table for my babies. What a sad day it was, years later, when somebody had taken that treasured piece of furniture and made it a rabbit-cage! Dad also made a bunk-bed for our girls when we lived in Peru. Many people have benefited from Dad as a carpenter, and he has taught many young men and women to do carpentry!

PACKER
Dad has been very helpful to me and Bengt through the years with packing. He packed up our things in Chaclacayo, when we had left them for a family to use and they messed up. He helped us pack when we moved to Bolivia. And he came to Springfield to help us pack up when we sold our house and moved to down-size a bit. It was cheaper for me to buy him a ticket from Sweden than to enlist movers. My late husband’s health was too weak for him to do the job. Dad was a good packer!

CARE-GIVER
I appreciate so much the way Dad took care of Mom. During the worse of my cancer treatments, sometimes I felt a little “envy” because of the good way Mom was taken care off. He surely showed what a loving husband is like. After Mom’s passing Dad remarried, and in his last years he had a cute little wife that took care of him!

A BLESSED FATHER
Dad was blessed with 5 children, 19 grandchildren, and 38 great-grandchildren.

 

Dad with my grandson David in 2004

SPIRITUAL LEADER
I’m leaving the best for last. What better can be said of a father than that he has been a spiritual leader? For that I am forever grateful. I’m walking the paths of God because Dad walked before me. He appreciated my talents and let me develop them during the times we labored together for Christ.

HERO
Let me wrap this up with declaring Dad my hero. I am sure Ingrid, Agneta, Pepe and Lars agree with me. Dad is our hero! How privileged we are to have had such a Dad. He was not perfect; none of us are. But as perfect at a father can be, he was. Whenever I told Dad that he was my hero, he didn’t like it. He did not consider himself a hero

I’m sorry I will not be able to attend the last farewell. It will be in Sweden, January 8th. I got a strong flu the same day Dad moved home to God. But I will be part of the welcome party in heaven!

My biggest wish is that we should all meet there one day.

At Jesus’ farewell discourse to his friends he talked of the many rooms in his Father’s house and that he was going to prepare a place for them. “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also” (john 14:3).

There is room for everyone around the table with Jesus. I will meet my loved ones that have gone before! Dad we will meet again!

Do you have the hope of meeting up in Heaven?

Jesus invites you!