Caleb and Kelly Bales
Caleb and Kelly were both profoundly changed when they met Christ in their late teens. It was around that same time as they became followers of Jesus that they went on their first individual trips to Europe; Caleb to Italy, and Kelly to England. It was then that they each saw firsthand the great spiritual neediness across Europe.
They met a couple of years later, attending Central Christian College of the Bible, in Moberly, MO, following the calling pressed upon them to full-time ministry. Attracted by each other’s hearts for following God and the joy and laughter they created together, they fell in love and were married in May of 2009. They lived in Columbia, MO, for a decade, having their three daughters, Lydia, Jovie, and Imogen, and involved with their local church. A difficult season of chronic pain and job hardship brought them to Phoenix, AZ, where God continued to heal and shape them.
It was in this desert season, they both felt convicted to be obedient to God’s calling in their life to full-time ministry. They reached out to Kontaktmission, which Kelly had interned with, and began exploring what God may have in store. Through prayerful research, they began to discern where God was leading them and finally after a year and a half of waiting through Covid, in September of 2021, they were able to take their first trip to Scotland. They saw that “the harvest is plentiful, but the workers few,” (Matt 9:37) and they desired to be a part of what God was already doing there.
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Scotland is a land in need of a revival
Scotland was once a land steeped in the Gospel and has a great Christian heritage. John Knox led the reformation in Scotland which made way for Protestantism. The church grew in this time greatly. In the late 1800s, a large portion of the Church of Scotland divided to form the Free Church of Scotland. This time acted as a sort of revival and was considered a continuation of the reformation. During this time, many came to Christ and churches were planted and leaders were trained up.
This now serves as a sharp contrast to the state of the church today. It is estimated that 1.5-2% of the population of Scotland are born-again believers and it is now considered an unreached nation. With some churches assimilating to the secular culture around them, rejecting Biblical authority, and others closing their doors with little attendance or no leaders to lead them, it is clear that Scotland is in great spiritual need. The people, which for many, are a few generations removed from gospel exposure, are in need of God’s saving truth, healing, and love, as many of them live in hopelessness. Drug use and drug-related death are major problems in Scotland as well and are symptomatic of the larger heart problem and spiritual need.
This would be a bleak outlook if it weren’t for the mighty God we serve. There has been a mindset shift for many Scottish Christians who see the vital importance of being missional where they are and sharing the gospel boldly. There is a dependency on unity between churches moving forward and a desire to see churches planted and leaders trained. There is a confidence in God and Biblical authority that is growing. God is moving and at work in the hearts of Scotland and we desire to be a part of what He is doing there as “the harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.”
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It is no secret that from the very beginning of the church Christians have taken an active role in being missionaries and sending missionaries. Yet not all are called to be missionaries. (We are all called to make disciples)
Being a missionary is a calling, but have you ever considered that sending missionaries is also a calling? So what is your calling? Are you the missionary or a missionary sender?
All Kontaktmission staff live on support, meaning we believe that God will provide for his mission, through his church.
Please consider joining our sending team by partnering with us in prayer and partnering with us financially.
- Please pray for the people of Scotland to hear and listen to the Gospel and that we can be an effective part of communicating it.
- That we would form real and lasting friendships with the people there.
- For safety in travel and our children growing up while striving to understand where home is.
- Pray for more Scottish partners and co-laborers.
- Prayer for continued support raising as we move along and prepare for what God has in store for us and His people.