God’s mysterious work

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Since arriving at the Adventist Media Network (AMN), I’ve experienced so many things –big and small– that have unexpectedly contributed to our mission. Sure, some people might put all of these events, people and circumstances down to coincidence or luck—a little good fortune or a bit of a break. They may even attribute it all to good management, a professional team or adept leadership.

I know that’s wrong.

We don’t always understand how God works, but there is one thing I’ve learned: prayer works.

We don’t always understand how God works, but there is one thing I’ve learned: prayer works. That is why I begin every day seeking God’s guidance and His blessing. I know how weak, how vulnerable, how completely helpless we are without Him. And that it is only through Him that anything of worth can be done.

Take for example the wonderful news we received recently. It involves an issue we’ve been laying before our Lord for months. And yet, when it came–it felt like it came in a flash. The Australian Government has officially recognised the cultural contribution Adventist Media Network makes to Australian society. This may seem like a small thing, but let me explain the process and ramifications of this, and I think you’ll agree something remarkable has happened.

Yes, in some nations obtaining recognition from the government is a straight forward process. Not in Australia, where cultural trust status is highly prized. In fact, our petition for the status went all the way to the Prime Minister’s office for approval. We have always had a dream that Adventist media would reach into every corner of society—including our highest echelons—but I never dreamed it would happen this way!

The recognition is also a very practical answer to prayer. You see, not only did the Australian Federal Government recognise the cultural contribution of AMN, it granted us the right to create the AMN Cultural Trust—a trust that can receive tax-free donations.

Once again, in some nations, nonprofit entities receiving tax-free donation status is routine. Not in Australia! I see this as yet one more remarkable answer to prayer.

So, today, if anyone wants to support Adventist Media—from Signs Magazine through to It is Written Oceania, from Hope Channel to the Discovery Centre and everything we do in between—for the first time in history they can make a tax-deductible donation to the AMN Cultural Trust.

For once, no matter our politics or nationality, I think we can all agree with the Australian Government’s decision! Because, Adventist Media not only contributes to Australian culture, but it does so in the best and most important way. It produces media designed to inform, inspire and to uplift our culture. And that has to be the greatest contribution any creative arts organisation can make. 

As some of you know, my time at Adventist Media hasn’t all been smooth sailing. Just a few months ago, I had a major seizure and was involved in a serious car accident—and my car was totalled. There have been plenty of other challenges as well, including the grief of seeing my mother die from cancer last year. That is the story of everyone living in this sinful world—the Bible stories make that clear. As far as I’m concerned, Christ can’t come soon enough!

But until He does, I will be on my knees, experiencing the embrace of our all-loving God. And every day until then, I’m privileged to see Him working all around me.

Neale Schofield is chief executive officer of Adventist Media Network.