Tag Archives: stories

No Preconceived Ideas

No Preconceived Ideas

The people were all smiling as they came out to greet the missionaries driving into their cactus lined village. The national partner arriving with the missionaries made introductions as they all sat down on the woven mats laid over the dirt. The nationals and missionaries exchanged proper greetings. The missionaries asked, “Do you want to hear about Jesus Christ and sing a song to God?”
“Yes!” the villagers responded.
“What song do you know?”
“We don’t know any songs to sing to God. Teach us.”
The missionaries proceeded to teach them a song along with the gospel. A few people showed interest in following Jesus.
Within a few months, as the national partner continued visiting and sharing with the people, many came to Christ. They were hungry for more stories from the Scriptures and insights into how to follow Jesus.
The missionaries were able to visit every once in a while, but the national partner was key in meeting with the villagers regularly. The time came for the new converts to follow in baptism. In the deserts of South Madagascar water is scarce. Finding a water hole deep enough to baptize is a huge challenge. On this day, the villagers and missionaries walked 10 miles to get to the ocean and back. The lead missionary, along with a few volunteers from Louisiana, stood on the shore surrounded by the new converts and modeled how to baptize. After a little more teaching and verification that the people understood what this step in their faith meant, the leaders of the village took each new convert one by one and baptized them! The people from the village sang praises to God and celebrated with a meal on the beach; rejoicing in this step of obedience in their new found faith.

Teachings continued and the new converts gained more and more understanding of the Scriptures. After some time the missionaries were asked to come back and teach about taking the Lord’s Supper. The people were all smiling again as they came out to greet the missionaries driving into their village. The missionaries had permission to set up a tent and stay for the night. They got the tent up and began fellowshipping with the people. Some women missionaries were cooking with the women in the cooking house. The missionary kids were teaching the village children how to play hop scotch and the men were sitting and beginning to discuss the steps to take the Lord’s Supper, described by the Scriptures. It was an incredible experience to be a part of these milestones in the lives of new Christians who had no preconceived ideas of what these actions should look like. From the time they confessed Christ as their Lord and Savior and learned songs to sing to praise him, to following him in baptism and then learning what it means to remember the Lord through taking the Lord’s Supper, the missionaries were determined to teach them to do everything based upon what the Scriptures say.

Pray the people in the village of Amby will grow in their faith according to the Scriptures. Pray they will weigh every action in light of the Scriptures and that they will be able to stand firm in the midst of persecution and temptation. Pray for the people in the church to grow stronger in their faith and be diligent in sharing the gospel with their neighbors.

Reaching Out

Reaching Out
Learning Tae Kwon Do

Learning Tae Kwon Do

Pray for a special outreach during the first week of October in Jouberton, South Africa.  This is a combined effort of workers from two national churches, university students from Mahikeng, a team from First Baptist Church in Fisherville (U.S.) and IMB missionaries.  Pray for many seeds to be planted in the hearts of children learning stories from creation to the cross.  Ask that many young people will come to know Christ and/or will grow in their faith.  Ask God’s blessing on times of training for church workers.  Pray that these two churches will be strengthened and their communities changed for God’s glory.

Finally, ask that the many parts of this combined effort will communicate well & work together effectively!

Faces in the Field

Faces in the Field

tandroyman

 

Everyday we see faces like this Antandroy man. He is listening intently to the stories from God’s word, trying to make sense of this new idea, Jesus, Savior of the world.

 

Men like this have been hearing these stories, believing and following Christ in faith. Many are also taking these stories and sharing them with their households and friends.

tandroygirl

tandroyboy

 

 

 

 

Praise God that children like these will grow up learning these stories! Pray they will come to know the Lord in a personal way and be able to take what they’ve heard and entrust it to those who will be able to teach others also.

 

 

Pray the Word of God and a relationship with Jesus Christ would take over as the ultimate source of power in each Antandroy and Antanosy person’s life.  Break them away from the power and fear they live in trying to worship and cling to the traditions of pleasing their ancestors.

As they cling to this newfound faith, pray they would be laborers for the harvest is plentiful!