If you’ve spent any time with us, you know that we are all about people!
We are always seeking the people that God is calling to become ‘Oaks of Righteousness’ and who will display his splendour (Isaiah 61:3).
What on earth does that mean? Well, it simply means that God can use his people to be like strong trees in their communities, they can bring shade, shelter, home and safety to those around them; they can bring life! Many trees together make a forest, and in the same way that forests are intertwined with the water cycle, bringing life back to desert lands, we have seen that God’s people standing together can bring his life back to communities.
So, we’re all about people. We are seeing the wisdom of this strategy in this time. We have only ever invested in people. We’ve never been about buildings or infrastructure. We’ve diligently worked to equip people, to train people and to unite people. And now, as international travel and lots of national travel is restricted we see the wisdom in that strategy. In every community where we are working, there are people who are reaching that community. They don’t need to travel. They live there! They are carriers of God’s Holy Spirit. They are loving their neighbours. They are standing together to bring life. They have been perfectly positioned by God for a time such as this.
And we are cheering them on! As we all know, communication and connection are so important. We are determined to stay connected to Life Groups across sub-Saharan Africa during this season. We want to stand with them.
Publishing ‘Love Your Village‘ online is one of our first simple steps. We’re sharing via social media and WhatsApp and team members are disseminating this through Life Groups. Feedback has been good from those who have received it – groups are finding it helpful and are encouraged that they have not been forgotten.
Gertrude and Kennedy in Petauke are sending the material on to people they know so they can learn while they are at home. For Percy and Mwandi who don’t have smart phones, team members are sending on abridged versions via SMS. In Chinsali, Mufmbwe, Mpongwe and Luanshya Life Group members know someone who has a smart phone and have been able to receive material through them.
So what? Well over the years we have seen Life Groups help people to know Jesus, we have watched as they’ve supported people out of addiction, we’ve witness them build bridges, mend roads and apply for boreholes and we’ve been amazed as they’ve fed the hungry and cared for the elderly, the sick and the orphans. As they have experienced the love of Jesus in their lives, they have stepped up to carry his love to those around them. Right now, this is what all our communities need.
By diligently working to help Life Groups to grow in their understanding and love of Jesus, we have seen many people coming to know Jesus and many being lifted out of poverty by those around them.