Community Interaction and Development
We had heard it was a large group of children. When we saw them all together though, running and jumping we realized this was a really important ministry our friends invited us to. Some of our friends at the local school have organized an outreach to the community to children who have very little supervision and physical needs. It is awesome to see our friends love on the children, provide snacks, and teach them some structured education and games.
With almost 150 children coming twice a week, 2-3 workers simply cannot do it alone. One of the reasons
our presence as a family is needed is because Anne, and the boys (sometimes Chris also) can play and love these kids in a Christlike way. We believe that tangible love through our presence can make all the difference in a young life.
Community Interaction and Development
H, like many of the men who come through the Drug and Alcohol recovery center, was thin, with no expression on his face. He walked with his head down, arms and legs slowly moving forward when he walked. Taking one day at a time at the center, and as the days turned into weeks, H began responding to the gospel message by asking questions about what he was reading and hearing from others. H began confessing his wrongdoings of lying, stealing, and more while using drugs.
He was estranged from family. As he learned to accept forgiveness from God, his smile was contagious. We found he was a worker with many skills, and quickly placed in charge of projects to improve the facility. He began re-connecting with his family, and to apologize for the wrongs he had done.
This picture is the first time he shared his testimony publicly, how he served another god, and how He began to follow the risen Jesus. We are looking forward to continue to partner with our friends bringing hope working in the only known rehab center in the country.
Small Business Development Training
This moment was probably the biggest WOW GOD moment we experienced... I had finished my seminar under a tree with some men and was watching Anne finishing up her teaching to
80 women, mostly from the biggest unreached people group in East Africa. We watched them listen ever so intently to Anne as she taught cake baking on their ceramic stoves. When Anne was finished giving her cake demonstration, she shared her testimony of God’s grace in her life.
This was the first time hearing the gospel for most of the women. When she was finished we watched the women race to line up to obtain copies of the recipe and directions so they could start their own cake making business, in order to provide for the basic needs of their family. This occurred just before returning after our first term, and the climax of all of our language study, building relationships, and enduring through many trials. We will be partnering with the church and community more and more in the future.
Biblical Training and Leadership Development
We were walking on a dirt road and taking in the simplicity of life in Africa. The tiny mud and grass houses, the palm trees nearby, and the children looking intently at us, saying “Mzungu” (white person). While a few of our friends went to the children and I went to the head of the home, a man about my age. He did not make eye contact and his body language was less than friendly. I thanked him for allowing us to visit his village, and did he have the time to talk for a few minutes. He seemed surprised, and grateful that I had asked. I asked about his family and his religion. He also allowed me to share about my family and beliefs. He then allowed me to share the gospel with a large group of children/youth outside his home. You can see me and my friend B* sharing The Story of Hope with the group.
This village is an unreached village, about an hour and a half off the road. We are excited about the opportunities to continue to show Jesus Film, and train the missionaries serving in these
Biblical training and Leadership Training
I was really excited to see how our young adult group responded to the DMM training-how to read the Scriptures and share with others. I asked my friend T* (name meaning “hope”) to share what he learned with others in the group on Saturday mornings. About ten young men have been baptized from this small group, and they are now using their musical gifts to serve in the church. They also began a recent large youth event, called Ablaze, in which half a dozen youth made a decision to follow Christ. We are looking forward to greater discipleship opportunities in the future for more gospel change in the city!