5 Little Stones
What was it that defeated the most famous giant of history? An army? The largest, bravest, deadliest soldier on the good-guys side? Some great strategy?
Five Little Stones and a little shepherd boy who trusted The God of Little Stones.
Africa today is being destroyed by the most daunting of Giants.
- AIDS – with 10 % of the world’s population, they suffer 70% of its AIDS patients – the only region in the world where life expectancy is decreasing – 38 years in Zambia.
- Hunger – half of all Africans live on less than $1 per day; the GDP of the entire continent is less than Mexico’s.
- Corrupt Leaders – costing Africa $148 billion USD annually. • War – 1 in 5 Africans live in direct fear of conflict – making it the world’s most dangerous place to live.
- Ignorance – the only region in the world where illiteracy is increasing.
But all of these are merely symptoms of a deeper problem – Africa has lost her soul. Like a rape victim (a very keen likeness to what has actually happened to her on many fronts over the past 200 years), Africa has lost her identity, her tribal meta-narrative. Somewhere in the rubble of village and family life one may find the carcass of self-restraint and conscience. Immorality, corruption, and passive dependence have taken their place. Where once a vibrant morality, initiative and accountability guided the African societies, now many Africans seem resigned to a degenerating social conscience.
How can God turn around this onslaught?
- Foreign Aid? – already 300 billion USD invested into Africa – and we are still the poorest continent, and getting poorer.
- G8 Summits? – get all the greatest nations and minds together – but it is apparent the world is experiencing “aid fatigue” from lack of progress.
- International pressure for reformation? – ha – look at Zimbabwe!
- Missionaries? – there are countless mission stations around Zambia and Africa, and the people in the surrounding villages are just as beat down by the Giants as anywhere!
Could it be there is a little shepherd boy with a sling we are overlooking? Where are the Five Little Stones with which God is going to defeat the Giants?
- I believe orphans are one of those Little Stones! What if this army of 20 million little feet were raised by African Christian parents who instilled the Soul of Jesus into them, a reformed world-view (without animism and passive dependence) , a good education and skills training, and a motivating vision to become the evangelists and leaders of tomorrow? What if their influence in 20 years would tip the scales to a new type of African leadership that could change a continent?
- I believe simple, grassroots, discipleship oriented, clusters of Jesus followers are another Little Stone! Africa is literally dying for lack of Real Christianity – in the village church they bow to the witch doctor; and in the city church they bow to the Prosperity Garble. Few are real disciples of Jesus.
- I believe backyard gardens are another Little Stone that could turn the Hunger of Africa into Abundance! If every rural African had a productive garden that’s all it would take. Is that so hard?
- I belive an army of simple health evangelists could be a Little Stone that would turn the graph of life expectancy back to north again!
- I believe the quality 12th grade education of rural children could be a Little Stone designed to slay continent-sized Giants. Education empowers, period. It cuts the feet from under animistic witchcraft; it broadens horizons of possibility and strengthens confidence in personal initiative. Then make Christ the center of education and transformation is within reach.
God – the Same One who did the job of creating galaxies with a simple Word; the Same One who was born in a cattle stall and lived in obscurity, and yet in his brief 33 years, planted a Little Seed that shifted the axis of the Universe; this Same One who strategized to use 12 hillbillies to start a movement that would revolutionize Empires – THIS IS THE GOD WE SERVE!
So church! Let’s mobilize around these Little Stones.
- Orphans – we are building our first children’s home and gathering clusters of kids (Lift Groups) in the villages to disciple and love into fruitfulness. Are you called to come and gather a group of kids, mentor and love them? Are you called to sponsor another children’s home?
- Jesus Cells – we are spread thin – so many potential disciples, a few committed disciplers, six villages we are currently working in. This is the most difficult task of all – emptying yourself, becoming one with them, living among them, eating their food, learning their language and names, loving their children, struggling with them thru the demons that choke them. It takes real passion for Jesus and Christian maturity, exceptional prayerfulness. Are you called to devote your life to reaching the lost with the Freedom of the Gospel? Are you called to join our prayer team and seriously devote yourself to intercession, without which this work just will not happen?
- Gardens – it seems so simple to think that poor hungry people should have gardens – but oh so difficult in reality! I have heard that the number of gardens has multiplied since we have come, but it is still not near what it should be. One of the Lift Groups has taken on a garden project – the kids are so excited as we train them to do it well, do it to please Jesus, and in the end the potential to sell the produce and have some money to get uniforms and shoes and go back to school. Are you called to come and devote yourself to gardening? Are you called to sponsor some gardens?
- Schools – we have 4 simple “classes” brooding now under the trees – English literacy for adults, first grade level and third grade level; an intern just started a conversational English class; and one of our Lift Groups is getting the ABC’s a couple times a week. Are some of you called to give your lives to empowering the poor in this way? The community is begging us to start a school – but we are waiting until God sends the ones to make it happen.
- Health – we have done nothing with this yet – we haven’t the staff – though the people need it so desperately. Young parents are dying from AIDS because they refuse to believe it. Instead they choose to believe the witch doctor who says some uncle put bad medicine outside their door and they stepped over it. So they get a blood test from the hospital telling them they are HIV positive, but then hide the medicine under their bed until they die. The pills are then buried with them. Has God gifted and called you to serve these people in such a way?
Pray – – Give – – Go – –
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to join the prayer team, to give or to go.