Friday, June 01, 2007

God's Sovereignty

Some of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve seen have been here in Africa. The night sky can be just as compelling with the vast expanse of stars shining through a brilliant black night. To me, these are reminders that God is in control. That He created this world and it was good. That He wants to claim us as his creation. As as his children.

Paul said in Romans that God works for the good of those who have been called. And that’s exactly what we have seen this week. The clinic has been officially cancelled. They forgot to tell us yet another step in the process. A committee must meet and grant permission. They meet once a month. I’m sorry for all the work that was put into planning this clinic, but God had other things in mind.

Instead of focusing on the details of the clinic, the team has been focusing on people in the area. Ministering to them, praying with them, discipling them, and leading them to Christ. I asked Scott if the doctor who came from South Africa was disappointed because he was unable to practice. Scott said no. The week had been full of frustrations, yes, but the ministry side had been amazing and has left a lasting impression on each person involved.

God works for the good of those who have been called.

I want to close with an excerpt from an email report I received from one of the members of the team. Please continue to pray that God will work mightily among the Tonga of Mozambique.

Many of you know the Sugar Creek outreach to the Tonga of Mozambique has already realized the birthing of two house churches (seven have been baptized so far). Today (Sunday) our 13-person team separated into 4 groups and visited the two house churches and two other preaching points. In each setting our team members shared their testimony and presented an evangelistic message. A very simple Gospel message was preached to the “church under the Mango Tree”. We saw many potential leaders of the new house churches who are hungry and thirsty for knowledge of God’s love and a desire to share the Good News with others.

One woman walked to the “Mango Tree” church meeting, a distance that would be a two-hour car drive. She is a female witch doctor and asked to be prayed for to release a controlling demonic spirit. After they prayed the authority of Jesus over her life, she told them that she wants to bring her family for prayer, and remove all the icons of witchcraft from her home.

After the close of the day the team gathered together in the thatch roofed hut to share testimony of our experiences. The Holy Spirit was so evident in our passionate stories of God at work among the people. As Gustavo was sharing suddenly something fell from the ceiling and landed on the table. There in the middle of us, staring right at Gustavo was a poisonous Green Tree Snake. Most of us scrambled for cover, but Gustavo did not flinch. Soon the snake was dead from the broom and frying pan. What an unbelievable moment…The Spirit of God and the serpent…face to face…the serpent is crushed.

As I was running along the shores of the pristine beach of the Indian Ocean this morning, gazing at the spectacular sunrise of a new day…my heart was overwhelmed by the radiance of the Bright Morning Star – a new dawn is shining on the Tonga of Mozambique – new churches filled with the Spirit of God are emerging and this place will never be the same.

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