Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Greetings in the Name of our great God and Savior!
As night falls on our final day in Moshi, Tanzania, each of us here has much to wonder at and to give thanks for. For the past three days we have been in and out of small Masai settlements, taking any opportunity to share the Good News of sins forgiven through Jesus Christ.
Our trek today took us over the border into Kenya to a village in the foothills of Kilimanjaro. We had initially been told that we would be witnessing the marriage of two members of the tribe, something we were all excited to experience. What we actually ended up being a part of was so much more. We arrived and were treated to a customary bottle of Coke in the home of the congregation's pastor after greeting many of the children and adult members.
When we finally gathered in the small mud church building, the marriage service began. Pastor Todd was asked to give a short sermon in addition to the pastor's address, followed by the brief wedding ceremony. As soon as the rings were exchanged, we were then notified that there were also some children to be baptized. Jessica and Ashley held the children as Pastor Todd performed the baptisms before the Masai congregation, each member dressed in traditional Masai robes and jewelery. It was only yesterday evening that he had spoken at another pastor's home, giving words of encouragement following the passing of a elderly family member.
I don't think I've ever seen so many opportunities to speak the comforting words of our Savior's work of salvation in such a variety of life's circumstances in such a short amount of time. From baptism to marriage to finally leaving this vale of tears, we see the triumph of the cross over sin and death!
Performing the kingdom work God prepares for us carries many blessings. The strengthening of the faith of those speaking His Word and those hearing His Word of course comes to mind. No matter where that work is done, whether here in Africa or right at home (wherever home might be), whether at the workplace or at the supermarket, God is seeking for His lambs to be gathered to Him. The perspective which we receive in being a part of that work is yet another blessing. God helps us to see beyond the day to day tasks and the earthly distractions to what is really important, the one thing needful. We see the application of His Word, and are reminded of that ultimate goal, that His Word be spread. The fields are indeed white for harvest, and laborers are indeed few.
All of your prayers are appreciated, and I hope that through these short accounts, everyone can share in our excitement as God's Word is taught here in Africa. Thanks be to God for the opportunities we have to share the truth of sins forgiven through Jesus Christ!
Soli Deo Gloria.