November 11, 2013
Greetings to all in Jesus' Name!!
What is new in Gospel For Southern Africa these days?
Quite a LOT !!!
God keeps blessing our ministry with new development and He stretches our faith in many dimensions, but His Love never fails, and we have seen blessings after blessings as we journey with Himn in changing lives.....
After having completed a recent acquisition of sewing machines, so our local students can develop working skills, and use these skills to make a living, pastor Zamani and I have taken some time to pray and reflect on the next steps and overall direction of our ministry.
As a for instance, and with the ongoing food shortage, some of the donations were allocated to plough a portion of the land we have, and to seed it, and we anticipate a good crop (God willing) based on the forecasted rainy season.
As our well had gone dry, we also used some of the donations to dig some boreholes in which we found plenty of water. With the addition of pumps, and piping, we will be able to provide all the water needed to support the current sanitation system built earlier, as well as use it for irrigation if and when needed if the rains fail us -- we are praying for God's intervention when it comes to funding for the pump, piping, and/or a generator, or other means of electricity for that matter that would help us address these issues.
But beyond these material / logistics ongoing challenges, we also have some upcoming events with deep spiritual meaning and impact on our student body:
From December 12-15, we will be hodling our annual conference, where our students will be encouraged through the Word of God and other testimonies and training material to face their ongoing life challenges by seeking God's help and comfort. Many of these students are orphans, and several of them became head of families and have to take care of their siblings beyond trying to make a living and going to school with the hope that some day, education will afford them a better life. AIDs, rapes, forced marriages, and violence is part of their day to day environment, and we know that the Lord can bring healing and comfort in any situation He is invited in.
Please join us in prayers for the success of this conference -- any donations that God puts on your heart can be dedicated to this event, and will make a tremendous difference in the lives of these children.
We have also seen tremendous growth in the local Church which has gone from a membership of 85 attendees to 185 people. 14 students have recently given their lives to the Lord, and are now being used by God to minister to their peers with powerful testimonies of what God is doing in their lives. As a result of this growth, we anticipate the local congregation will start saving in order to buy material to build a chapel in 2014 in order to accomodate the growth in membership -- we can no longer contain the number of people in some of the students classroom as we did in the past year(s).
Things in Mozambique are challenging, and the uncertainty of the political climate with civil unrest which could easily deteriorate into a civil war situation. Our ministry there is growing, and we pray for the Lord's protection for everyone in this country as our local pastor keeps ministering to as many as possible, in spite of ongoing challenges in his health condition with malaria.
Lastly, I wanted to share with you a vision which has been placed on my brother pastor Zamani Sithole and I for quite some time, concerning the direction the Lord is taking us into when it comes to longer term plans for GFSA:
As we pray and spend time with Him, we are reminded of the very essence of our ministry: The Great Commission and how this unfolds in the Southern African region -- how do we spread the Gospel beyond what we have accomplished with the activities in Mutare, Zimbabwe and Chiomio, Mozambique?
This is where quiet times with the Lord, seelking his direction and praying for guidance is far more productive than any man-made busy activities from our own flesh -- there is a good reason why Jesus always spent time in solitude with the Father, BEFORE any important event or upcoming meetings with the crowd -- Trusting the Lord (100%) and not replying on our own understanding (0%) combined with acknowledging His presence in our lives in every little step we take, is a safe and proven decision making model that I am learning to rely on, more and more every day.
Through these times, my brother Zamani and I have now entered the next phase for GFSA: the establishment of a Bible School on the exisiting grounds where the school facilities already exist:
We have plenty of land to build
We still have access to manpower through the corps of enginners who so gracioulsly donated their time before to build the school blocks
We have access to a whole range of training material on many different topics ranging from mission to leadership, to specirfic topics on theology.
More in depth training for our local pastoral team, combined with the actual required buildings to house and feed incoming students looking for pastoral and ministerial training from surrounding countries is what is now needed to achieve this vision of the GFSA Bible School.
In order to adddress the above, the Lord has gracioulsy provide pastor Sithole and his wife Edinah with a one year scholarship at an institution called Christ for the Nations in Dallas, Texas ( www.cfn.org) where they will be receiving in depth spiritual training. Edinah will be majoring on "Children and Family", and my brother Zamani will major on "Global Missions".
Beyond the advanced training they are getting, another great blessing from Christ for the Nations, is the sponsoring they provide in order to get funding for a roof to complete any structure we can build locally. With the need to erect the proper facilities for the GFSA Bible School, Christ for the Nations will reach out to all their worldwide supporters in order to present our project in order to seek donations for the roofing of the facility which will help tremendously, considering the ongoing costs of building material.
We look forward to God's Blessings on the upcoming year for pastor Sithole and his wife in Texas, and we pray for the protection of all our brothers and sisters in Zimabwe and Mozambique (and beyond), that the Lord may keep them and provide for all their needs.
God's Blessings to all.
In His Service,
Rev. Claude Steinmayer