“Life changing” is the way I would describe this third pastors’ and spouses’ conference in Malawi.
Our team consisted of Dr. Kirk Milhoan, Dr. Michael and Belinda McCarthy, Connie and me. Our five days there were life changing for many of these pastors and spouses, living in villages in one of the poorest countries of the world. Nearly one third of these attendees were not even clear on the gospel. I made it as clear as can be in my first session and about that many raised their hands and trusted Christ for the first time. Yes, they are pastors with hearts that are big, but little information. When we presented each person with their own Bibles in their own language, (compliments of SSI), they held them close to their chests, and up in the air, as many of them sang and danced for joy.
I want you to hear from Bishop Morricio Dimba and his son pastor Enock. Together they have planted 650 churches in Malawi and Mozambique. Hear what happened in their own unedited words: First Pastor Enock: “Dear Pastor Steve and Connie, Thank you very much for your coming this year to Malawi for the facing future without fear, this conference came in right time and where most of us here in Malawi and Mozambique we live in fear of our future what will be like but because of your teaching from the book of John, we can now face the future without fear. It is amazing how the Lord was leading you in breaking the scriptures and how was applying in our lives. Truly God is using you to equip us here in Malawi and Mozambique. It is a great blessing to us all to have Bibles in our own language, this will help allot especially when all the Pastors and wives are in their villages, they can now read their notes and any reference verse they can see in their new Bibles. We are praying for your coming again to teach us more from the book of Nehemiah as you have just started, I can see that this book has allot of trouser to us leaders. Once again thank you for your coming which has made us to move forward in our faith and ready to face our future without fear, the certificate is awesome!”
(Personal note: We gave them a “Certificate of Achievement” for completing 5 days of Bible training. These certificates give them great credibility back in their villages.)
Now from Bishop Morricio Dimba: “I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus, I want to thank you for you coming to hold family and leadership Conference, you are an answer to one of out standing prayers to the Lord to send some one to help us. We are not well trained to the work of the Lord. We just obeyed the call of the Lord of “GO YE”. The little we knew we just passed it to others, and for your coming is just fulfilling. Thank you also for the money you gave me, it will help me to continue seeing the Doctor and pay X-ray for the left leg (hip, thigh and leg). The whole Conference was a great blessing and learned much, all the Pastors with their wives says it was an eye opener and all we say please come again, so that we can continue leaning and grow spiritually, The Bibles, food, slippers and warm clothes for children were so great and a blessing to us all. God bless you so much.”
(Personal note: We gave warm coats and flip flops for each of the nearly 200 orphan children. I wish you could have been there to see the response. The weather has been quite cool and rainy and most of the children were barefooted and had no warm clothes. We also provided four more goats for the orphanage.)
Despite a major gas shortage that had cars backed up for many blocks, and a rather rainy and cool start, we still had just under 500 in attendance, sleeping on straw mats, and uneven dirt floors. I am reminded of James 2:5 “Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?” You sent us and we were privileged to minister to these heirs of the kingdom. Thank you for your continuing support which makes this all possible. I also want to thank each member of the team for doing an outstanding job as they each had an opportunity for teaching.
I will be speaking at two conferences in Ghana at the end of August and the beginning of September. Watch for more information!