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by Christine Platt CEO
We have a very active team working in a country with a hostile religious majority which has been persecuting the Christian minority for a long time. Terrorist acts are commonplace. This team always encourages me with their joy and dedication to the task of telling the story of Jesus in the languages of the many tribes found in their nation. They do this in the face of danger and hostility. They do this for the joy set before them - the promise of eternity spent with their Lord and God, and the hope of the people they are serving becoming their brothers and sisters in Christ.
The team encountered such opposition and oppression when they went out to meet the tribes. They felt the need to pray more. The team now prays for two hours every day. When they set out on a field trip, half of the team stays home to dedicate themselves to prayer for the mission's success. This practice has transformed their work.
The church in this particular nation has been in survival mode for many years and has little desire to reach communities with a different religion. Our team developed a program to present the various tribes of their nation to the church with her obligation to bear witness of the good news to these people. At first the church showed little interest. Today a steady stream of churches is requesting the team to present this course to them. Some are then asking, "How can we help?" A response which heartens our team.
Our team goes out: ministering to rich and poor alike. They take good news. They also take the love of Christ. And God has opened amazing doors for them.
They prayerfully decided to reach out to a poor tribe. Over several years they travelled to the area, prayed, met people and visited. The children from this tribe cannot attend school because they are afraid and mistreated by the other kids. On one visit our team discovered a school run by a lady. It had no books. Teacher and children alike were poor. Our team bought exercise books and pencils for the children and a couple of sets of clothes for the teacher. On their next visit the school enthusiastically received them. The teacher was attending church, and the people asked for recordings to be made in their language.
Once, the team was praying for a particular tribe and felt it was time to visit. Upon arrival a family invited them home for tea. The father of the family told of his dream the previous night in which a man on a white horse rode up and took him and his wife to heaven. Our team leader was then able to say that the man on the white horse was Jesus and to share the good news with him. Our team plans to visit them again this year to make the first recording.
It is a real challenge to hear these stories and compare them to my own comfortable existence. It is a real privilege to serve this team and be able to help them as they bring good news to their own people in the languages they understand best.