The following update is from Rolland Baker. He named it “Living on the edge.” Webster defines “edge” as: that place where you press forward….
Wow! That is what we are doing by the grace of God! The past few months have been amazing and yet very challenging due to things which are so hard to put into words…but Rolland somehow did it and I believe his insight will encourage us all to live on the edge for Jesus!
These are exciting times. Despite the worst Satan can do, we and our
churches in several provinces continue to grow in number and strength.
The Kingdom of God is upon us. The power of the age to come is breaking
into our world on earth. We stay filled by feeding on the Word of God,
and then doing what it says. In so doing we draw close to our Savior, so
close that even all our imagination cannot keep up with the wonder of
our connection with the Son of God. Each day, and through each trial,
the Holy Spirit carries us closer still to our perfect companion, the
precise image of the Father, whose Son has become our greatest joy. Yes,
Jesus forever will be our destination, our purpose for living. “How can
we know Him better?” has become the constant cry of our hearts as we
increasingly partake of His heavenly nature. From glory to glory we are
being transformed by the power of the Cross, becoming prepared for an
eternity of perfect fellowship with our God.
People ask us how to follow us to the mission field, how to be prepared
— “how to do it?” Our pursuit of His Kingdom has always taken us to the
“edge.” We have never been able to survive by backing away from the edge
and leading a more “normal” ministry lifestyle. Sometimes our flesh
cries out for more time out, more time to organize our lives and
possessions, more time to battle the chaos in our surroundings. But our
daily crises demand an awareness of the schemes of Satan and an
ever-increasing trust in our perfect Savior. That means time — lots of
time — with Him, talking over everything in our lives. And from our
walk with Him we receive the urgency to press on, to run the race, to
love our God with all our strength. And so by every decision, every
expenditure, and by every project we start we move closer to the edge.
We already live in an impossible realm. But Jesus sends us teams,
support, ideas and initiative, and so on we go, pressing forward to what
lies ahead no matter how close to the edge we get.
Our journey takes us to those who have just fallen over the edge and
need rescuing. The poor and destitute know they need help; they are not
too proud to receive. And once they see love, real love from the Master
Himself, in our lives, they will come to the King. Entire villages will
come to Jesus when they see that He heals the deaf and blind with just a
touch and a word. When we bring a truckload of food for a feast, or
solar panel-powered hand-held units that play recordings of the Bible,
or new Bibles for the pastors, or clothes, or plastic to rain-proof
their thatched roofs, the love of God flows freely. And then Heidi and I
can find ourselves right up against the edge ourselves, and our spirits
need replenishing again.
We cannot leave the edge because we see that so much more is needed.
These villages are parched. People walk for hours to get water, carrying
it in jugs on their heads. We finally have well-drilling equipment, but
need qualified engineers to supervise the drilling process. One engineer
from the States is arriving this week for this purpose. Our older youth
need simple block houses to live in now that they have outgrown our
children’s homes. We need to buy property and a building in downtown
Maputo for a church center. We need honest and capable construction
workers who can build our primary school before our rainy season. We
need to diffuse and heal the serious tribal tension that exists between
northern and southern tribes in Mozambique. And we need to demonstrate
to the people all around us that we are here for love, pure love from
God. We are here to demonstrate the Kingdom in every way we can. We need
to be so full of the Spirit that our service to the King is
exhilarating. For that we need provision of every kind, the kind of
provision that we don’t see unless we are on the edge.
We invite our readers to live on the edge too. That means something
different for each person, but I pray you will know what that means for
you. Loving God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength will take
you to the end of yourself, and you will find yourself looking out over
a precipice. Only God can keep you from falling. Only faith working
through love counts. Let’s never leave the simplicity and purity of
devotion to Jesus. All we know when the pressure becomes great is Jesus
and Him crucified. We exist by the power of the Cross, safe and secure.
From our position at the foot of the Cross we warn and persuade to the
limit of our ability the multitudes that pass by. Those who turn and
follow us into the heart of Jesus will be our joy.
We thank you with all our hearts for supporting us faithfully and loving
us so much from a distance. We thank and love those of you who have come
to visit us in Africa. And we treasure the prospect of seeing you again
back on your own home turf. May Jesus bind us together in His service
until we are truly one in Him!
Much love, Rolland and Heidi