Category Archives: Zimbabwe

Physical Food Leading to Spiritual Food

Physical Food Leading to Spiritual Food


Recently some of our missionaries visited a new “squatter camp” called Killarny, which is located just outside the beautiful suburbs of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. A “squatter camp” is what is known as a settlement with shacks made of wood, cardboard, tin and other scrap material, where whole families live in a single shack, the size of a garden shed. Most of these people have come from all over Zimbabwe in hope of a better life near the city, and hopefully a job. These few missionaries, along with the partnership of the local Baptist Church, went into this settlement in order to do a “food distribution” to those who are starving. We gave out mealie meal, oil, salt, soy products, beans and tuna chunks. But even more important we went in with the hope of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Most of the 150 people were only hoping to get some nourishment, but we also fed them the word of God, and gave them the hope of salvation which only comes from the Lord Jesus Christ.

Will you pray for Killarny, and for the local church who is reaching out to them, that much fruit would come from the teaching times in this community? The “harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few…so pray” says Luke 10:2. Pray that many would come into God’s Kingdom through the outreach in this community.

Curio Sellers Become Disciplers

Curio Sellers Become Disciplers

A new discipleship group has started among the street markets of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. This group is made up of curio and flower sellers who work in the city center. This group was started as the result of street evangelism by members of Bulawayo Baptist Church, and as an outgrowth of a discipleship group already established at another area of the city center. Each week, as missionary Ramona shares the lesson, they seem more and more hungry to learn the things of the Kingdom of God. Others come to listen who are not believers, but are curious about this group of people sitting in the middle of the market. Please pray that these onlookers will hear the truth of the gospel and come to believe. Pray also that group members will have boldness to share what they are learning, and will feel empowered by the Holy Spirit to share their faith with family, neighbors, and friends, and that God will raise up one or more of them who are willing to start other groups to then teach others what they are learning. Pray that like the apostles that these sellers will “turn their world upside down” (Acts 17:6b) with the Gospel.

Reaching Street Vegetable Sellers

Reaching Street Vegetable Sellers

The pastor of Bulawayo Baptist Church felt a great burden for the neighborhood surrounding the church. As he began walking the streets around the church, praying and speaking with those whom he came in contact, he  developed a heart for a group of ladies who work at the street vegetable market located just a couple of blocks away from the church. As he visited with these ladies, many of whom are widows, he asked them, “How can the church help? What is the thing you need most?”

street-market

Almost as one, the ladies responded, “We are hungry. We are working, but it is not enough to provide food for our families. We need food.”

Knowing that church did not have resources available to help these ladies, the pastor prayed for them, asking the Father to please provide for their needs. He then asked others in leadership at the church to pray with him for these widows.

Within just a few days, he received an unexpected phone call from the U.S. The lady on the other end of the phone said, “You don’t know me, but my church has committed to provide food for someone who is hungry, and we want to help someone there in Bulawayo.”

Of course, the pastor said, “Well, let me tell you what God has just done. We needed funds to provide food for some widows here, and your phone call is the answer to our prayer.” The church took up their offering, and instead of the $1000 that was pledged, they raised $4000!

Because of the prayers of the church in Bulawayo, and the generous giving of the church in the states, fifteen widows will now receive food assistance every month for the next six months! During this time of drought in Zimbabwe, God is providing for the needs of these precious ladies and their families. Each lady will receive a packet containing 40 lbs of mealie meal (corn meal, the staple food for most Zimbabweans), a half a gallon of cooking oil, 10 lbs of dried beans, 5 lbs of salt, and a tray of fresh eggs (2 ½ dozen).

receiving-food

Missionary Ramona will be heading up the ministry to these widows, helping to organize the monthly food distribution, which will be at the church after Sunday morning service once a month, and meeting with the ladies to share the gospel and disciple believers among them. Praise God that several of the ladies have already started coming to church. Please pray that as they receive needed food to assuage the effects of the physical drought in this country that they will also receive showers of blessings to assuage the spiritual drought in which many of them live.

Ramona asks for you to pray for her as she continues to meet with the ladies downtown who sell vegetables.   At their last meeting there were 18 ladies. Pray that each of these ladies will commit their lives to the Lord.  Pray that each of these ladies will become witnesses for the Lord and disciplers as they share with others what Ramona teaches them.

Reclaimed!

Reclaimed!

Creating dependency ultimately hurts more than it helps and in some cases actually undermines the economy of an entire nation. (Haiti is one example). When there is free food available, one can’t afford to grow it because no one will buy it. It also shuts down local stores trying to sell what is being given away which causes loss of employment. With free medical care available, who will pay to see local doctors and dentists? With free clothes shipped by the bales local clothing industry has shut down in many under-developed countries. So how do you help people in an oppressive environment? We are thankful to have Brett and Allison Barnhill from Reclaimed Ministries join the Zimbabwe Evangelism Team. They have come in to teach people how to grow their crops in a way that conserves seed, fertilizer and water, yet yielding an abundant harvest.

reclaimed

They provide training in financial management. They also help people identify skills they have and get them started making things (handcrafts, baskets, clothes, etc.) and then seek out local markets where their goods can be sold. While they are doing all these things, Brett and Allison also share the gospel and do discipleship with those who are involved in the project. This is how we as Christ’s ambassadors can continue to “proclaim good news to the poor. . . to set at liberty those who are oppressed.” (Luke 4:18)

You prayed and God answered in Harare

You prayed and God answered in Harare
You prayed and God answered in Harare

Thanks so much for praying for the Urban Conference in Harare.  Urban Specialist, Kurt Holiday, showed us how to learn more about our city, the people in our city, and how we can be pro-active in bringing God’s “shalom” to our cities.

The discussion groups were lively as people began to generate practical ideas their churches could use to engage in Kingdom activities in Harare.

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Deceptive Beauty

Deceptive Beauty

This is the most beautiful time of year in Harare, Zimbabwe when all the Jacaranda trees are in full bloom.  But underneath the trees there is an ugliness, a dirtiness, a sinfulness that cannot be missed.  Like most large cities it has its share of “dens of iniquity”.  The economic and political turmoil have also fueled the wickedness that can be found here.  But we believe God has the power to change the city of Harare and make it beautiful inside and out. We are praying that God will raise up faithful Christian men and women to pray for Harare and to actively share the gospel with its people.  We are praying that the kingdom of God will advance and break down the strongholds of the enemy all over Harare.   Pray with us for the Urban Conference, 6-8 October as we discuss with Christians from different churches how to reclaim the city of Harare for Christ.

Jacaranda Trees lining the streets of Harare are in full bloom in September.

Jacaranda Trees lining the streets of Harare are in full bloom in September                                                                                                                                                             “If we reach the cities, we will reach the nation. If we fail in the cities, they will become a cesspool that infects the entire nation.”  Dwight L. Moody

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Training Laborers for the Harvest in Zimbabwe

Training Laborers for the Harvest in Zimbabwe

ARecently,Gregg and Donna trained 19 men in Obedience Based Discipleship.  This is a process whereby from evangelism to discipleship to church formation to leadership training one moves seamlessly through with a plan of action for disciples every time they are willing to say yes to the next step.   It is a process commonly known as Training for Trainers (T4T) that is revolutionizing and multiplying the efforts of those involved in church planting both in the U.S. and around the world.  We are thankful to have received the training and now have the ability to train others.   Please pray that these men who have been trained and are excited about what they have learned will put it into practice where they live and that they will find obedient, God-prepared people who will help multiply the work of the Kingdom of God on earth.   Pray also that from these men we will be able to develop a training team that can train other faithful men and women throughout Zimbabwe in this proven process.

Volunteer Construction Team Uses Skills in Zimbabwe

Volunteer Construction Team Uses Skills in Zimbabwe

For the third year in a row we are blessed to have the volunteer Construction Team come from Trinity Baptist Church of Lake Charles, LA with us this week.  Last year they put a new roof on the Baptist Seminary Library.  This year they are putting a new roof on the classrooms at our Baptist Seminary and possibly going to the Nenyunga Clinic to complete that building in Tongaland as well.   Pray that they will remain healthy and without injury as they work quickly and efficiently to accomplish all they have planned.    Praise God that these men who are gifted builders are willing to use “the ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship” (Exodus 31:3, ESV) which God has given them, like Bezalel and Oholiab, to bless the lives of people all the way across the world from them!

Roof #4

 

Return to Me

Return to Me
"Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice." Psalms 55:17

“Evening, and morning, and at noon, will I pray, and cry aloud: and he shall hear my voice.” Psalms 55:17

In a few months a number of us that will gather for several days. We will be studying God’s Word, worshiping Him and spending time in prayer, individually and together. We are going to specifically be praying for the Sub-Saharan African Peoples. Our theme is “Return to Me”. Will you join me in praying for this Prayer Forum as we desire to draw near to the Father, interceding on behalf of the lost, that their hearts would be open to the Gospel, that their ears would be open to the Truth?

  • Pray for the Lord to blow the winds of His Spirit in our churches/ministries, bringing new life and vitality to believers and ministries.
  • Ask the Father to give our churches a hunger to encounter Him in a new and fresh way through prayer.
  • Pray that the Lord will give us an urgent heart to prioritize prayer for revival in our lives.

Obeying the Great Commission

Obeying the Great Commission

 

Lay-leaders and church members In some areas of Zimbabwe are taking the Great Commission seriously.  Christians living in one village are sharing the gospel with neighbors in nearby villages.  At least 108 new believers that we know of have been baptized in the last few weeks in four different places, primarily be lay-leaders!  New churches are being started as well.   We praise God for the obedience of these believers.   Pray that more Christians in Zimbabwe will be faithful to share the gospel with the lost around them.  Pray that God will raise up more laborers in the harvest to become shepherds because many in Zimbabwe “. . . wander like sheep; they are afflicted for lack of a shepherd.”  (Zechariah 10:2b ESV)

baptism 2 baptism 3