Change … What comes to mind when you hear that word? Recent elections made he word ‘change’ into a buzzword for ‘better!’ Some people love change and some detest it and avoid it whenever possible. Most people have a love-hate relationship with change. Sudden or slow, difficult or easy; change usually happens. In the Makua culture, change is an insult to one’s ancestors. Big change, like moving one’s home to a new location for example might mean death because it would ‘anger the spirits.’ Even if the move is the obvious answer to protect a family from cholera or to avoid the annual flooding, change is avoided. This is perhaps the greatest reason why the Makua people remain southern Africa’s largest unreached people group…but that is changing! In just 5 years, we have over 700 churches in an “impossible” province! What about change and the Kingdom of God? The highest heavens and the earth below cannot contain our unchangeable God (Acts 7:49-50, Heb. 13:8). It is as if God has called the human soul to be in a continual state of change.
I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the Kingdom of God. (Matt 18:3)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! (2 Cor. 5:17)
And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory. (2 Cor. 3:18)
Globally, there seems to be a shifting within the Body of Christ…a season of change which is a divine dissatisfaction for anything lacking the fullness of God. It appears that God is currently calling forth His awakened bride for something only violent love can conquer …”The kingdom of heaven suffers violence and the violent take it by force.” (Matt.11:12). At this very hour of change, it is time to seek God with passionate abandonment! Like a child, may we totally depend on our heavenly Daddy while letting faith arise and God’s enemies be scattered, (unbelief, fear, unforgiveness, selfishness, pride, etc). Change is coming… so let us be watchful and alert! “We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed…” (1 Cor. 15:51).
Speaking of change … we have something pretty big to share with you. At the beginning of the year, we were asked by the leadership of Iris Ministries to pray about relocating to South Africa to become Directors of the Iris South Africa base with Pastor Surprise Sithole. Needless to say this is a huge decision and we have spent over 2 months waiting on God and praying. As directors of the Mbonisweni base, we would be overseeing a Bible School, drop-in educational center, feeding program, and numerous other projects. The biggest focus of our attention will be pioneering a new children’s center in Mbonisweni (area in the Mpumalanga province which has an extremely high AIDS population). We recently went to visit this area and met the current staff. Our hearts were overwhelmed with peace and vision for this new work. We also learned of the overwhelming amount of children who have been abandoned at the local hospitals. One little girl we learned about has been at the hospital in Kabokweni for 6 years! This broke our hearts!!! In Pemba, if a child is abandoned, local authorities bring the child to our base immediately. But in Kabokweni, local orphanages are full. Praise God that the Father’s house is never full! There will always be room for more children!!! Please be praying for us as we continue to seek God’s will regarding this next step!
Jean and Teisa