Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Orphans and Preaching in the Bush

We drove precariously through the narrow cow-lane up into the hills towards the village clearing. The battered old Land Cruiser wheezed and groaned as it picked over the rocks and through the deep ruts and holes in the dry red dirt. The vehicle was packed to over-flowing with people and equipment for the outdoor evangelism service we would start when we arrive in the remote village.

We had just ministered to several orphans at a local church off the highway. We were so blessed to be able to deliver new t-shirts, soap, and notebooks to the children. They all live with a foster-family, but they are often overlooked when provisions are made within the families. The children listened closely when they heard the story about Cain and Abel and how God can give us strength to resist temptation to do wrong things. Danny and Lindy Bravo elicited roars of laughter when describing how the Azungu (white folks) had such a hard time flying all the way from America to see them in the little thatched-roof brick church. Several bright faces responded to the invitation to follow Jesus with their lives and hearts.

Now we were crowded with 17 of us in the rusty and dilapidated Land Cruiser, carefully trying to find a way up to the village high up in the hills. We had learned that the “traditional animal dancers” – those who worshipped animal spirits and strived to emulate animals themselves - were due to hold a ritual dance that night – in the same spot we had chosen to preach and teach! We prayed fervently that God would give us favor and that those who would be normally worshipping created beings would instead hear about the one true God who loved them more than any animal.

We set up the spot under two large trees. Unloading and starting the generator, we soon powered up a small soundboard, speakers, a keyboard, bright lights and microphones. Night had fallen and music and invitations over the loudspeakers drew locals out from the bush from the dark of the evening. Many had never been to church and didn’t know the traditional responses to shouts of Alleluia and praises to God that came from the local team as they began singing and dancing in worship to Jesus.

After much joyful worship and dancing, Charles shared a story of God’s love proven through creation and the sending of His own son to die for the lost and His resurrection to eternal life for all. Steve Konzman shared from his own testimony about how he found God in the midst of trouble. A drama emphasized the hold that sin has over us until we turn our lives over to Jesus. Finally, the invitation was given to those who would receive and many hands were raised as they prayed to ask Jesus to save them.

God is at work in these people – they are seeking and searching for deliverance from their spiritual bondage. Wheresoever Ministries is hard at work, bringing the Good News to those who have never heard. They are in need another vehicle, as our trip here has amply demonstrated.
Pray for God's provision for this. Also, please continue to pray that our team would be effective in bringing God’s message of love and salvation to the people of Mozambique.

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