I Have Returned

Just back from two weeks in a “creative access” country. The trip went well and involved two different parts; evangelism and training. The city we did evangelism in had probably never seen 10 white faces at the same time before. The ‘soil’ was hard and I think what we mostly accomplished was to ‘break up’ a lot of it. We had meaningful discussions with over 100 people. About half way through the week, though, the national security folks caught on to us and started following us. That meant that we had to stop making new contacts and focus on those we’d already made. That was clearly according to God’s plan as it allowed us to go deeper with those who had expressed interest. In the end we had 4 professions of faith and conducted 3 baptisms. However, I think we helped many people take a step closer to faith.

The second part of my trip was difficult too. My pastor and I conducted theological training for underground pastors and translators. What we’d perpared our lesson plans for was not what we encountered in the classrooms. People were not as prepared as we’d been lead to believe they would be. We had to adapt on the fly. My pastor taught on the Trinity and God provided him the perfect translators. One man had a laptop and when he got a theological term he wasn’t familiar with (and he already had a very good theological vocabulary) he’t type it in and get a good translation. I taught on hermeneutics and made sure when I wrote my outline that I avoided technical terms. Likewise, I was expecting Bible School students and what I got was a much younger crowd.

In the location we taught, there was no AC and power was intermittent at best. We had to take security precautions coming and going. They drove us in every day via a different route and in cars with tinted windows. They pulled in to the garage and closed the door before we could get out. At my site I had to hide from the landlord twice. In the end, I think the church was strengthened there in ways we won’t really understand. Well, not till heaven if Ray Boltz is tragically correct. :)

We also made contacts for trips next year. There are so many opportunities, so much work to be done. The nationals are doing a lot on their own but sometimes having a foreigner tell the same story means that people will listen. When manfishing these days, Americans make good bait in some ponds.

“The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.”

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One Comment

  • […] My Ray Boltz quip in the previous post probably bears some explaining. Ray’s song “Thank You” talks about a person going to heaven and learning about the impact of the little things s/he did. Unfortunately, it comes across in such a way as to make it sound like heaven is about us. People line up to thank us for the work we did. We have a crowd show up to tell us the impact of our good works. […]

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