by Joy Casey in Ethiopia
May 5, 2017
I had the honor of spending time with four incredible men. They serve in an area where the Christian faith is not welcome; yet, because they love their tribe, they persevere in sharing the love and freedom that only Jesus can give. The Holy Spirit is drawing people because of them and we are seeing growth. Between the four missionaries, two villages are served and three of the four men were raised in those villages. During the Oromo uprising last fall, 15 small churches in this vast rural area were burned to the ground. The only 2 churches left standing were the churches these men planted. The reason? Their kinsmen (all M*slims) stood shoulder-to-shoulder with them and protected their lives and the safety of the churches. It is absolutely amazing.
We are helping expand the existing stick and mud church in one village that is basically falling apart. The evangelists serving in this town are ecstatic to push the walls out, put in a cement floor and get a new roof. The old roof leaked like a sieve! About 50 people regularly attend the church. The other village has 65 people attending. I so wanted to go to these two towns that are 12 kilometers apart, but there is no road. Next time I come, I am going to rent a motorbike and get there that way. Sorry! No pictures at this time.
Many of you are aware of the drought in 2015, but for some pockets of Ethiopia 2016 continued with drought conditions. This area is one of them. The evangelists are all farmers who depend on their harvest in the fall to support their family. For two consecutive years, their crops have burned up.
The first part of 2017 each of them had to sell their oxen used for plowing. They had nothing to feed the animals and they needed money for their families. Now they have no way to plow their land.
Three of the four evangelists are sponsored by individuals. The $75 a month helps immensely although it does not cover all the needs for a family. We need a sponsor for one more evangelist. It may not seem like congregations of 50 or 65 people is a lot of harvest, but it is actually outstanding. (I have to ask myself, “How many people have I brought to the Lord this year?”) It takes a courageous person to turn from his culture and serve Jesus in this hostile environment. Introducing Jesus as Lord and Savior is foreign and the teaching vehemently opposed by their respected mosque leaders. I rejoice at what God is doing in these two villages!
We can’t share personal details about the evangelist that needs a sponsor. If you are interested, please contact NewLife and we will send you a prayer card with his picture and biography: info@NewLifeEthiopia.org
You might have heard of the two ways to be obedient to the Great Commission: Go or Send. Won’t you Send this man to “make disciples and baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit”?