We went out to Molepolole (Mo-lee-po-lo-lee) Baptist Church recently which is located in one of the largest villages in Botswana. We were able to give out some school kits to the kids and initiate a feeding project because of your giving and assistance of BGR (Baptist Global Response). In 2014, this church opened a Care Center (an after school program for orphaned and vulnerable children), but due to jealousy of preschools in the area, the government shut the Care Center down until it could provide a long list of things like a playground, child size toilets, and a kitchen. The government was making them function as a “preschool” program even though it was a program designed to solely help children and not take money from the parents or the community. Pray for this church as they try to meet all of the government requirements to reopen the Care Center in 2017. There are so many kids in this area that need help and this church is willing to help!
It’s hard to know what strategy will work best to reach those who have not heard, or maybe even those who have heard but never understood. Journeyman couple, Andrew and Leah, started a Scripture Memorization Club among the children in our town. Children would come by the masses to recite their verses and receive prizes. We would pass by the children in town and they would be studying so hard. Those who could read were teaching their younger siblings by repeating the verses over and over. The children pictured above memorized 30 or more verses in order to receive lunch at a local restaurant on the beach.
It was the desire of the journeyman couple to reach the parents of these children. They knew the children were being impacted, but weren’t sure what to expect from the parents. Below you can see the results in at least two families. As the children practiced their verses, these parents heard the truth of the Gospel and accepted Christ into their hearts. They took it to the next step and followed in baptism.
Comment below with your prayer for these families to grow in the faith and share with those around them the saving grace of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
We needed a new craft for the youth group that met at Happiness’ house twice a week. Maybe I can teach them to sew, I thought! I was SO surprised when we started the lesson – – most all the Pedi youth (girls AND boys!) already knew how to sew…and some of them were quite good at some very difficult stitches! Each youth pushed the needles in and out, in and out of the washcloths. They were sewing the washcloths into pockets that would hold a bar of soap. As each Pedi student completed their sewing task, they were given a new bar of soap to tuck inside their washcloth pocket. The sun was setting and it seemed the dust was rising when they finished sewing. The 67 youth and children sat in their chairs and listened intently as I reviewed the stories we were learning on the storying cloth. Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah, Abraham…. The seeds of truth told through the pictures on this “Bible cloth” were planted again into their hearts. Pray that the evil one will not come and snatch away the seeds sown in their hearts. (Matthew 13:19). Pray that these Word-seeds will be sown into fertile heart-soil. Pray for the youth to hear and understand the Word and to produce a crop a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown (Matthew 13:23) God calls us each to ministry that is not just “so-so.” God calls us to more than just teaching youth a practical skill like sewing. God calls us to sow seeds of truth into the lives of everyone around us so that they will, in turn, sow into the lives of all those around them! God can do SO-SO much more than we can ever hope or imagine! (Ephesians 3:20). Ask Him to do it among the Pedi youth!
The small room is built out of zinc siding and is used as a daily afterschool feeding location for over 200 children. On Monday afternoons, however, the pots are pushed to the side and the room is converted into a teaching hall. For over five years, two ladies have been teaching Bible stories there to mostly Damara speaking children. Each week, the children crowd inside the room, often times sitting way too close to one another in miserably hot temperatures. On many occasions the ladies questioned the validity of their efforts because so often it seemed that no one ever truly listened. But God….He said to remain faithful to what they have been called by Him to do, and so they did. Recently, God made it clear that all the lessons should be ones that would teach these children how to share Jesus in their homes, schools, and neighborhoods, although most of the children did not know Jesus as their own personal Saviour yet. The first lesson was complete chaos and extremely discouraging! One of the ladies suggested, however, that they continue teaching the exact same lesson every week until the kids begin to understand it. They also asked people to be praying at that same time every Monday afternoon that God’s heart for his children would not only be understood but also taken out into their community. As part of the training, the children report back each week about who they told last week’s lesson to and the results. Many are beginning to grasp God’s heart for His people. Last week, five children gave their lives to Jesus during the lesson! It is extremely exciting to hear these children practice the stories of Jesus and prepare to “go and make disciples”. Please join us in begging God to use these children to reach the nation of Namibia for Jesus.
Tonight I had dinner with a man who went to an exclusive boys’ high school in Cape Town. I had dinner with a man who is a traditional healer. I had dinner with a woman who is mentally ill. I had dinner with a man who, even though he was quite intoxicated, knew more about the American political election scene than I did. I had dinner with a man who lost his wife four years ago and is addicted to drugs. I had dinner with a thirteen year boy who has never been to school.
On Thursday evenings our family has been going to a local church for a Community Supper for several weeks now. It is quite humbling. This is a time that a good meal is provided and everyone is seen as a person…treated with respect and listened to. Please pray for the street people who need so much – especially Jesus. Pray for the precious children that they will feel loved.
In the U.S., Easter is a family holiday usually celebrated by dyeing eggs, or putting goodies inside plastic eggs and hiding them for kids to find. Easter baskets are filled with all kinds of candies and gifts. In Zimbabwe Easter is celebrated very differently. It is a time when the churches come together as family for a weekend of celebrating the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The gospel message is proclaimed to all who are present, young and old alike.
Music is a big part of the celebration as is singing and dancing with great joy for what God has done!
Times of fellowship and play time activities are also an important part of this weekend.
The Lord’s Supper is usually celebrated as well. I’m thankful to live in a place where the gospel is the central focus for the celebration of Easter. “Do this in remembrance of me.” Luke 22:19c
Pray that lost family members who come to Easter camp will respond to the gospel this Easter!
There’s a small church family located in a big village in the North West Province of South Africa that could use your prayers! Ledig (lee-duh) Baptist Church met for many years in a house, but now meets in a “makuku” or tin shack on their own plot of land. This church is mostly made up of women and children. It is very difficult to get the men to come to church. Every week the children/youth sing songs for the church. Every week the ladies lift up voices of praise. The offering is taken and a message is shared from God’s Word. Many Sundays special prayers are lifted for those with “matata” or trouble. There is a family spirit in this church.
I’m asking you to pray because the missionary family that worked with this little church for many years has had to leave. It is God’s time, but still painful. Pray for the women in this church to persevere in difficult circumstances. Most of their grown children are not following God. There are many issues; including joblessness , alcoholism, food insecurity and ancestor worship. Ask God to strengthen the women of this church to be the role models & teachers of God’s truth to their children & their grandchildren. Pray they will continue to share the Gospel in their communities. Pray for the young adults to take their places of responsibility in the church. Ask that the children will see that God’s way is best. Petition our Lord to raise up more godly leaders. Praise Him for His faithfulness!
January 2016…New school uniforms, new school supplies, new teachers…the new school year has begun in Namibia! As Namibian children across the country head back to school, we ask that you join us in praying that Jesus would open their hearts and minds to His great love for them. Also, would you please pray that Jesus would show Himself in new ways to them so that they might come to know Him as their Lord and Saviour? Finally, please ask Jesus to protect these children from Satan’s plans to destroy them in any and in every way that he can.
What would a church with no children look like? Please pray for a baptist church in Cape Town that has plans to involve neighbourhood children in a Christmas pageant. PKBC wants to share the wonderful story of Jesus’ birth with others. The church also wants to see children come on Sundays and throughout the week to worship and learn about God. This month several members are organizing a Christmas Pageant for the children to perform in December. Ask the Father for this project to be a success and that the children will have fun and feel loved at church. Pray that this PKBC will be a church with children.
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.
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!