It has been over four months since I have posted an update. Every time I have considered updating, I feel like I have been facing a major dilemma. With those difficulties, I have been reconsidering how to report the happenings of this organization without drawing attention to ourselves. Over the last few years, the Lord has made it abundantly clear to me that His primary concern with us is the condition of our heart. He evaluates in detail every thought and consideration that we have in any situation we face. This is where the true motives of the heart are revealed. When we are confronted with a situation and first go into defensive mode to justify our actions, we miss a great opportunity to put others before us. If we automatically take a defensive posture, we are unfortunately responding in the flesh not in the spirit.
Unfortunately this behavior has plagued me most of my life. This is a sign of an immature Christian that walks by sight, not by faith. When we walk by faith we inquire the Holy Spirit, “how can I be most useful in this situation for others?” This trip in Malawi was different. From the very beginning, I had a compelling sense in my spirit that the Lord wanted me to move on and learn this crucial lesson. A few months ago the Lord started prompting me to be way more consistent in walking in the spirit and not in the flesh.The first thing I noticed was a far greater sense of peace when I did not allow myself to react emotionally or fleshly. The Lord began to let me see God’s purpose for people in each situation; it was quite amazing. With my awareness being opened up by the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit can then use me to be an active participant in His will. Now my interactions were more spiritually focused and not driven by fleshly and emotional purposes. I was quite intrigued and excited about what I was being taught. Little did I know that the Lord would have a series of events already planned to test me in this area.
Hopefully I am conveying the message; the Lord has much love for us all. He is very patient and will go to great extremes for us to draw closer to Him. It is imperative that we love Him above all things. If you cannot say on a scale of 1 to 10, (10 being the most,) “Jesus I love you a 10 and there is nothing above or equal to my love for You.” If you cannot sincerely say this, be honest with the Lord and tell Him. If your heart’s desire is to love Him above all things, He will show you how to get there. I always believed that such a consideration was a bit of fantasy, but now I can unequivocally state that is 100% possible and a marvelous thing to experience. Thank you Lord Jesus for not giving up on me. I cannot stress the importance enough of loving Jesus above all in this world.
There were many unexpected things that took place on our trip to Malawi this time. Most of them were surprises to all of us. The Lord allowed me to see into the situation on several people’s behalf. I was instructed on several different occasions to ask a question or two and then wait, sometimes for two weeks or more. By the end of our time there, many of us came to realize that the Lord was working in mighty ways. He also introduced a missionary couple to us from Zimbabwe. I believe there will be many opportunities for us to work together, with them. God prompted us to finish the construction of a large room even prior to meeting them; now the purpose has been revealed. This missionary couple desires to have a Bible school that would most likely work well with our ongoing pastor training.
During our stay there, we learned that many professing Christians in Malawi have not been baptized. In the middle of the night, the Holy Spirit gave me a simple solution- a mobile baptism platform. When folded down, it will fit in the back of the van. We are very excited to see how God unfolds this for His glory. We also feel led by the Spirit to provide baptisms during our crusade efforts. Tony will be traveling with the baptism tank to get a better understanding of what the Lord wants us to do. Most likely, we will make up several of these as they are quite inexpensive to do.
I hope that these words are received as an encouragement and a testimony of the goodness of our Lord.
The Lord continues to
expand His Echo into more countries.
release families from the bondage of brick-making.
overcome the forces of darkness that come against His will.
heal those that have suffered attacks from the enemy.
empower men and women to fulfill His will.
prepare the path before we even start on it.
lift us up when we fall short.
distribute His Word to those that need it most.
reveal things to us that need to be addressed.
be full of mercy and goodness towards us.
The main emphasis on these last several statements is this, The Lord continues. His will is unstoppable. One of the greatest rewards, as a follower of Jesus on this planet, is to participate in His will. He deserves all the honor, glory, and praise. If I was not writing these words myself, someone somewhere else would be doing it. Why? because The Lord continues and He does not need any of us to do it. Thank You Lord Jesus for letting us participate in Your will. Here are a few scriptures that talk about our heart and love for the Lord. John 14:1,27; Mark 12:30; and Luke 14:26-33.