Looking Back, Dreaming Ahead
18 Years of GPPD
By Matt Riggins | May 3, 2021 | Return to Blog
How it all Started
On May 3, 2003, official documents were signed stating that we were recognized as a legal 501(c)3 organization. Today, we celebrate 18 years of God’s faithfulness and provisions and give Him praise and glory for what He has done.
You may have heard it said, “it all starts with a dream.” One night back in 2002, Global Partners in Peace & Development literally began with a dream! Pastor Mike Grooms and his son, Jonathan, were asked by overseas workers to consider starting an organization to help them be more effective in the work God had called them to. Although hesitation was the initial response, Pastor Mike had a dream so vivid and real that he woke up with the name Global Partners in Peace and Development running through his mind. The idea of promoting peace and development while bringing the transformative Gospel to the nations immediately sent him to Jonathan’s bedroom in the middle of the night. He told Jonathan what God was putting on his heart and asked him to research the name Global Partners in Peace and Development. “If it is available,” he said, “buy the domain immediately.”
Soon after, GPPD was launched to make Christ known among the nations. We are passionate about providing help with physical needs which opens the door to share eternal hope found in a relationship with Christ. The heartbeat of our organization is found in James 2:14-17.
"What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, ‘Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well,’ but then you do not give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do? So, you see faith by itself is not enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless."
Why GPPD Exists
We serve as a bridge, connecting the local church with the global church. We desire to stand with our brothers in sisters in the faith, with a common vision, to show and share God’s love to the nations. We passionately encourage the local church to step outside the walls of their buildings to discover their purpose and they walk in obedience to the Great Commandment and fulfill the Great Commission. We challenge the local church to join God in His kingdom work around the world. Many have answered that call and partnered with us in the mission God placed in the heart of Mike Grooms 18 years ago.
I had a turning point during one of my first trips to India. One sentence changed my perspective of how to approach missions with Global Partners. We had spoken to a group who had gathered along the banks of a river in an unreached people group village. After finishing the message, a man in the back spoke up. Our translator told us he was saying, “Your message is really nice, but what we really need is water.” This sentence floored me. How can we help meet their spiritual needs if their physical needs are so lacking that they are struggling to live?
Rodney “Gipsy” Smith, a British evangelist in the late 1800’s and early member of the Salvation Army, once said, “There are 5 Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, and a Christian. And most people won’t read the first four.” This truth is one of the main reasons we must put our faith into action every day. Jesus met both physical and spiritual needs throughout the Gospels. Do our lives reflect this? Are we modeling our behavior after the example Jesus set before us? When they see us, do they see Him?
A Legacy of Taking Action
For 18 years, we have been joining God’s work and putting our faith into action. God has opened doors for us to impact refugees seeking safety in Jordan. In Slovakia, our team has been faithfully showing God’s love to the Romani community and teaching life lessons from a Biblical Worldview. In India, we are partnering with over 600 pastors. Through those relationships, we have cared for hundreds of children in our children’s homes and community centers, installed 383 water wells, given chickens, goats, rabbits, and water buffaloes, and launched a women’s artisan training program called the Nations Hope Store. In Haiti, we have helped raise children into maturing young adults in the Rev Home. These thriving young adults can earn money for college, and escape the cycle of poverty by working at the recently launched Rev Café.
What started as a dream many years ago is now a reality for thousands of people, whose lives have been changed because one person said yes to God in the middle of the night. Through Pastor Mike’s obedience, countless others have been encouraged and challenged to say yes. Because you continue to generously give, intentionally go to unfamiliar lands, and faithfully answer yes, people around the world wake up each morning with purpose, value, and the confidence of eternity with Christ.
We owe a great debt of gratitude to those who have walked this journey with us. We will remain vigilant, keep dreaming big, and trust God to show us our next steps, knowing He will lead us day by day. Thank you for being a part of the Global Partners family. We look forward to the next 18 years of bringing help and hope to the nations of the world!