A Circuit of Churches…
Today we visited three churches in the morning and a children’s program in the evening. The first church was another of Pastor Christie’s churches. What they do here when they have multiple churches is have different start times. Usually the pastor is discipling people in the church to raise them up as leaders. So usually someone starts the service, then the pastor comes in to teach the people and when he leaves to go to the next church the others take over again. So the first church started at 7, then the next one starts an hour or two later and so on. In this way they can raise up people to eventually pastor the church and can go on to plant more churches.
This first church seemed to be another one in which there was much pain and sorrow…the Lord is close to the broken-hearted. This town, Kilinochi, is the place where most of the fighting and killing occurred; it was once called “the danger zone.”
The second church was the one we had gone to the night before only this time it was a regular Sunday service. In each of the churches Brenda shared and encouragement and Pastor Ted shared a message from John 16:1-11, that Jesus is with all of us, all of the time and that we need to be praying for the Holy Spirit to do His work of convicting the world of sin, righteousness and judgement as we go out and share the gospel. After each message we all prayed for renewed anointing and renewed passion to reach the lost. (Note: Tony got really sick and stayed back today to recuperate…please pray for him.)
The third church we visited was shepherded by Pastor Jeben who travels two hours to come minister to the people. We also met his wife. They have been married six years and have not been able to have children. She desperately wants children and also has a desire to adopt as there are many orphans from the war. We also talked and prayed about the possibility of them starting a Christian orphanage.
Despite their trials and difficulties so far all of the believers have been filled with the joy of the Lord and they are growing in the Lord. Pastor Ted, who was here with a team two years ago has been especially encouraged as he has seen so much growth in the church here…there are both more churches and more believers.
The pastor’s tried to organize an evening outreach but it wasn’t able to come together so instead we did s children’s outreach. We had a fun time ministering to the children and encouraging them to walk with the Lord and study His word. This church was on Pastor Christie’s property. His wife’s family live with them. After the meeting Pr. Christie’s mother-in-law brought in her son who was partially paralyzed due to a bullet wound in his neck, so we prayed for him and continue to pray the Lord to work a miracle in his body.
Tonight at dinner we met a man who was once a rebel fighter in the war but who is now in the Lord’s army. He has many outward scars snd deformities from the fighting but he does not let that hinder him. He is a bold man in his faith. He is attending the extension classes and desires to do the work of an evangelist and church planter… please pray for him, he wants to serve the Lord with his whole life.