Thirteen of us left here on Friday morning in our fully packed Land Cruiser and set off for the border town of Morobo. It is literally on the border. On one side of the road is Congo and on the other side is South Sudan. We were alternately in both places this weekend as we walked along the road, visiting people in their homes and businesses. Seven years ago the Lord told me He was sending me to Congo Sudan and last weekend when we visited Lasu Refugee Camp I finally started to see the fruition of the full calling He gave to me. This weekend cemented it in my heart I think.
This was probably the hardest ground I have ever had to till. All of the South Sudanese are very friendly and welcoming when you approach their homes. Even the soldiers and police and people in government, if you approach their home, you are welcome. It is a matter of pride almost to some that you leave knowing you were welcomed properly. Not so in some of the houses we visited in Morobo. They practically ignored us at times. Ahhh, but we persisted with kindness and love and were eventually welcomed in most places. We preached on the side of the road under mango trees to small groups and found them to be very receptive there. Two men, Emmanuel and Philip, who came forth for salvation, were completely transformed when we saw them later that night.
We preached and called those who would turn their lives over to Jesus and I was amazed at how most were stubborn and refused. They did not mock or jeer but they sat there stony faced and refused to come. I have never preached hell fire and brimstone, that’s not my style. But I was so desperate for their souls that I had to tell them that they were rejecting eternal life and making a decision to live with Satan in Hell. We “tried” everything we knew and this was the last effort, preaching heaven or hell.
Later that night when we set up the Jesus Film in the market place so many people came, hundreds. All watched and were focused. We always pause the movie right as Jesus is lifted up on the cross and we at that time preach and testify and call for those who would receive salvation. Three of us spoke and the message was powerful, very powerful. No one came forward. We preached on, one came. We preached on, four more came. We preached on and no one else came. People were laughing and joking and making comments that they go to church already, many were drunk and staggering. Again I preached heaven and hell and still no one came. Stony faces looking back. We prayed for those five precious souls and finished the film, inviting people to come to the disciple training the next morning. As soon as we left, the loud disco music cranked up right in the very spot we had just left and the alcohol flowed and they partied on until 6:00 a.m. Stony hearts remained.
Emmanuel and Philip came to the film and were smiling and bright as lights and so happy to come and help us. The men at our camp who were pastors and elders in Morobo stayed up all night around the campfire singing and praying for their people. There is a remnant there that have hearts fixed on God and we were so blessed by their unwavering faith. The next morning we were all ready to teach and then the rains came, all morning they came. No one came for disciple teaching. We decided once again to bless the pastor of this area and his wife. We prophesied over them and encouraged them. The wife, Jessica, had tears roll down her precious cheeks. She was so encouraged. Remember the other elders who sat up all night? They were still there huddled together in a small hut worshipping yet again after tea and bread. The Lord told me that I do not dare to leave without encouraging these men.
We then gathered in this tiny hut with rain leaking through the thatched roof and we spent the next hour encouraging these men that God sees them and God is pleased with them and that the harvest is coming, sooner than they think. We encouraged them to stay in the race and to endure. We told them that even if the harvest looks so little right now that God has promised to give more to those He can trust with the little. We are going back in three weeks to teach for three days to any and all who would come. Something we have never done is to send fliers ahead of us so I felt the Spirit say to send fliers in advance. People will come. We believe that this area will awaken to the Spirit of God. All we did this trip was to till the ground and scatter seed wherever we could.
While we were getting ready to leave Morobo we received a call from our base that our Abuba (grandma) had passed out, eyes rolling in her head, and her heart was hurting and she had defecated on herself and was being rushed to the hospital by our missionary, Obi, who remained behind to run the base. We immediately began to pray in earnest and declared life and health and all the things we knew to do and say. We came back and immediately went to the hospital to see her and she was hooked to an IV and was weak and sleeping. She said all her pain was gone. We were told that she had typhoid and malaria. In 24 hours she was released this morning! God can do amazing things in 24 hours and he healed our Abuba! It was an intense weekend and even an intense week for us as you will soon read.
The children are so excited this weekend because after ten years without good, solid lighting in their houses, we finally have it! We just spent $3,000 on solar and wire and switches to wire all houses for light, and last night there was rejoicing in the camp. Can you imagine, as a kid, to be excited about a light bulb? In the west kids don’t even get excited about computers anymore, much less a light bulb. Such simple things to bring so much joy in our little lives here in the bush!
Lastly, we had an intense week of teaching and talking with the youth. A few of our boys had been attending a fellowship in town and were led into deception by a group preaching following the law of the Sabbath. Our boys then refused to take exams on Saturday because it was breaking the Sabbath. They wanted to go back to the law! We had an intense three and a half hour teaching on the law and the Spirit, the old covenant and the new and Jesus now being the Lord of the Sabbath. One of our boys was so deceived that he refused the teaching and became very rebellious and prideful. We were in shock, I was grieved. This boy was our number one worship leader, our keyboard player, the one boy that everyone else followed, the one most sold out for Jesus and the one most walking in the Spirit. Then, BAMMM, out of left field he falls back into the law.
Needless to say we spent inordinate amounts of time listening to and talking with him. When I came back from outreach last night I saw the old, spirit filled boy again and my heart sung with joy and it was lifted in praise for God’s faithfulness and the tenacity of my team to not allow this deception to linger. I tell you, if you don’t do something right away, your child will float down the river of deception and wrong teaching, and will float right out of sight. I was shocked at how fast it all happened and how quick the darkness came into our boy. His eyes were dark and his heart was hard that fast. You cannot let up for one minute with your flock. We have to remain tenacious, no matter how tired we might feel. We cannot give up. My spiritual teachers have all been tenacious when it came to my walk and I could have easily gotten out of balance if not for them.
We are now going to increase our Bible study fellowship time with our kids who are hungry so that they will not want to dine at other less than desirable tables. This morning in church our children broke out in spontaneous worship singing in tongues with no music and it was as if angels were in our church. All were so blessed. Every week there is a new challenge to be met and we look forward to them because they cause us to stretch and to grow. We don’t get angry or upset. We know that it is stretching time and that God will be faithful to work it all out for our good. This week, if you are stretched, go with it and see what changes God wants to bring about in your life. The kingdom of God is always forcefully advancing and the violently passionate believers with take it by force, advancing with it. Amen?