Sunday, April 19, 2009

Excerpt from "Always Enough"

     "They were hungry, tired and penniless. This was our first conference in Nampula Province, a major event. Some of our pastors had walked from their villages for two days without food to get here, sleeping on the dirt by the side of the road at night. Others walked four days, and one six days-to learn from us. All came with only the poor, threadbare clothes on their backs. Now they were all waiting to see what we would do. Guy asked them, 'What are you most afraid of?' 'That our children will starve to death while we are here,' they answered simply. They didn't even know how they would survive going home. What did we have to say?

     Heidi and I deliberately came to Mozambique to face situations like this. We came to test the Gospel and strip from our preaching everything that didn't work and wasn't the Truth. We came to give people the living Jesus, not to try out our mission strategy on them. We came to love the poorest of the poor into the Kingdom, not to promise them a cheap road to health and wealth. We came asking Jesus to kill us, destroy us and remake us however He wanted so that we would be useful to Him here. And now we faced the test. 

     These people were suffering. They were sick and weak. They had seen their children die in their arms. Muslims persecuted them. They saw no hope outside the Good News we brought. So we preached the purest, simplest messages we could, straight from Scripture. We had no confidence in any other ideas we might have. They needed words that the Holy Spirit would back up. They needed to know what Jesus will bless and support, what will attract His company and presence. They needed content they could depend on to the death."

These are three of the most significant paragraphs in this book to me, for obvious reasons. I love these paragraphs, they are so challenging and life-speaking to me. 

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