Thursday, August 07, 2008

He Reigns

"It's the sound of the redeemed rising from the African plains"

Today during 7+ hour drive back to Mwanza I was able to pass the time Blackberry in hand and answer YOUR emails. It amazed me as I looked out over the savannah where thousands of sheep and cattle were grazing - electric wires crisscrossing the road and me, sitting in a moving vehicle connecting to a distant satellite seemingly out in the middle of NOWHERE!

The song we have opened our meetings with (I know it is a funny thought to think of us hooked up with iPod and battery operated speakers shouting from the depths of our souls - and not necessarily on key) in a 20x20 room with murderers, Muslims, thieves, pagans and in a virtual darkness, kept running through my head "all God's children singing Glory, Glory hallelujah He reigns".

As we prepared to leave our hotel this morning, I heard shouting and a great commotion not far enough away to be comfortable. My PTSD (post traumatic stress) kicked into high gear and I turned and asked Sabina what was happening. She looked pale (for an African) and said "not to worry it is just school children." Their cell phones were ringing, and they told us just to be patient and wait.

We did not notice the gates of the hotel compound had been closed and locked.

We had coffee, waited and in the distance heard the noise. After 15 or so minutes the driver returned and we were on our way. Two hours down the road when we stopped for lunch - Sabina leaned in and told me "you know that was not the noise of school children earlier? A riot had broken out after someone caught a thief - but the police were nearby and things were fine after some time."

I knew exactly what she meant. In my many visits to Ghana, my friends have explained when a thief is caught they are usually beaten to death or tied to a rubber vehicle tire and set on fire. Sabina assured me this had not happened as the police were able to intervene and save the life of the man.

This is the reality in Africa: justice sought with immediacy, revenge taken, answers demanded for the unanswerable (the death of a child, unfruitful crops, etc) and from the village we just left - elderly women murdered for superstitious beliefs.

This is the reality of God: He reigns!

We left the villagers with the challenge to be the answer to another person or villages prayers. We gave testimony God has seen what is happening here and we are His answer to the prayers. I asked "when will you answer the prayer of neighboring villages that do not have the Word?". We asked who would become the evangelist - they all raised their hands.

"It's the sound of the redeemed rising from the African plains"

There is still much work to be done and much fallow ground to be plowed to make ready for the seeds.

The last thing we did before we left the villagers was to provide low-cost mosquito nets. They clamored to purchase them ($1 instead of $4) and walked away with their Bibles in their hands and their "covering" under their arms.

Your prayers have covered and kept us. Please do not forget to continue to "cover" them. The only thing that breaks the yoke of the enemy is the freedom found in Christ. We gave them the tools, planted the seeds, beseech the Father to bring the rain.

You know He will - because He reigns!

And then there is always "sunshine After Rain"!

Pray for the start of the Women's Conference tomorrow.

Pray for our strength to return and our lungs to clear.

Pray and then pray!

No umbrella needed for His reign.