“He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the Gospel to all creation.”” Mark 16:15
Ministry partnerships count big time
There’s a question I often encounter—especially among my American friends: How can I make a difference for Christ in another country?
Glad you asked!
Ministry is not about one person. Although we enjoy having heroes, it’s just not the way this effort works. Missionary work requires cooperation and collaboration—a group of people networking together to make ministry happen.
We all pray. Some work on the ground. Others toil in cyber space, sharing the plight of the suffering with others. Some fight politically. Some help with administration. Still others give financially to make sure the ministry continues and can even flourish.
The fact is, every one of these partners is indispensable from a human perspective, in making the Gospel of the Kingdom known. Please do not ever underestimate the impact of your involvement!
On one hand, the tales from our time in the mission field allow you to “partake” in our experience pursuing the Great Commission and working towards “the earth being filled with the knowledge of the glory of the Lord.” On the other hand, we depend on your love and support.
The $15 you might spend on a movie, popcorn and soda can radically change the life of a hungry child in Stone Hill.
A friend of mine feeds her family of four for a month on $30 of flour, maize meal, rice, oil and sugar. The challenge is that most Westerners think that giving “only” $15 is an embarrassment, so they end up giving nothing. Dear friends, something—even something small—is better than nothing, because in Africa we learn to make much out of nothing. And our Lord Jesus fed the multitudes with “only” five loaves and two fish.
Some call it “crowd funding,” but to us it is God’s people doing it His way!
To give “only” a small amount, please click HERE! (You can designate funds to this ministry by typing Stone Hill into the comments section.)
Our fearless ministry leaders, who I must admit, sometimes border on insanity, have shown Christian movies outside in the winter cold, powered by a generator, over a second-hand projector and on a bed sheet (screen) hanging from our gym container.
The used projector was sourced by a friend in the United States for a pittance.
This is but one example of how a whole new Gospel opportunity has been born by the thoughtful concern and love of one partner for our people and ministry. These movies lift our hearts—and even help lift souls from damnation to salvation—Amen!
Here are some questions I’ve been asked that might be on your mind as well:
Why are the windows of your classroom and gym containers so high, small and barred?
Yes, our two classroom container has arrived. Praise the Lord!
The young children—who like to practice the accuracy of their stone throwing—find that shattering glass is more exciting than thudding rocks in the dirt. The height, small size and bars also discourage burglary—a fact of life here.
Why a gym? After all, the Bible says: “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things…”
The gym keeps the youth preoccupied, rather than getting involved with drugs, gangs and sex in a society so promiscuous that contracting HIV is an everyday expectation.
We also did not expect the older, more mature, young men coming in to build muscle; this opened an area of ministry to people we would have struggled to meet otherwise. God is so good!
Why don’t you teach the people to grow their own food?
Here comes a hard truth about African life that may offend Western sensitivities. Much of the aid given graciously by foreign nations, as well as social services doled out by corrupt dictators seeking political control, has robbed many Africans of their will power, work ethic and personal responsibility. Simply put, once you’re used to getting something—even something not that good—for free, sloth and irresponsibility sets in. Only the Gospel will renew our minds and culture.
We have organized a vegetable gardening competition in the informal settlement. There was lots of excitement until the competition was over; then all the gardens went to pot. The “competition” to survive and supply for your own provided no such thrill.
Missions isn’t for sissies
No one mistakes missionary work for a life of ease. There are no resorts in the jungle. The food is hardly 5-star cuisine. But there’s something else, and it’s hardly politically correct. It is impossible to present you with the magnitude of culturally deviant and grossly sinful behavior we deal with in Africa.
There is a lack of empathy, terrible cruelty, compulsive jealousy, deep hatred, the inability to organize anything but destruction, very poor (sometimes non-existent) work ethic, rampant dishonesty, exploitative opportunism, complete unreliability and a superstitious religion that often surpasses the insane.
This is how one author quoted a South African state-contracted businessman she was interviewing:
“You pay to be introduced to the political principals,” said the businessman. “You pay to get a tender, you pay to be paid (for completed work), and you must also ‘grease the machinery.’ From time to time, you are called to make donations to the ANC (governing party). There are also donations to the youth league, the women’s league, and the SACP (South African Communist Party).”
You see, sin isn’t something that manifests itself solely in obviously evil acts. It works its way through the mundane meanderings of daily life. Unabated, it grows banal and commonplace, coarsening everyone and everything around it with a deadened indifference.
Is there any doubt our only hope lies with our Risen Savior? Only the Gospel and the application of God’s moral Law will change the hearts, minds and actions of our people!
Charl van Wyk