Hangin' Out in Karongue

Hangin' Out in Karongue

Friday, June 22, 2012

Great Expectations

We are really praying that God would move powerfully among the people of southern Senegal. And we pray with an expectation that He will bring this to pass. Not because of us or because of methods or because of an organization. We pray with this expectation because of the power of the Gospel and because of the goodness of God to lovingly call people to Himself. I read the following quote today that sums up the expectation of the preaching of the Gospel.

“St Paul expected his hearers to be moved. He so believed in his preaching that he knew that it was “the power of God unto salvation” [Rom. 1:16]. This expectation is a very real part of the presentation of the Gospel. It is a form of faith. A mere preaching which is not accompanied by the expectation of faith, is not a true preaching of the Gospel, because faith is a part of the Gospel. Simply to scatter the seed, with a sort of vague hope that some of it may come up somewhere, is not preaching the gospel. It is indeed a misrepresentation of the gospel. To preach the Gospel requires that the preacher should believe that he is sent to those whom he is addressing at the moment, because God has among them those whom He is at the moment calling: it requires that the speaker should expect a response.”
—Roland Allen, Missionary Methods—St. Paul’s or Ours? (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1962), p. 74

Pray with us as we expect great things from our great God and His great Gospel. And as we pray, may we preach and live with great expectations!

Monday, June 11, 2012

A Little Misunderstanding (starring Hosanna)

I am never really surprised by anything that Hosanna says because I have come to expect the unexpected. It is just how Hosanna operates. But even I was not ready for what she said the other day...

We were both laying on the bed and just talking and joking with one another; telling stories and really just enjoying our time together. And in the midst of our great time I said, "Hosanna, when we get to Senegal you are going to be the prettiest white girl in the whole village." I meant what I said with all of my heart and expected my words to be met with Hosanna's characteristic grin. But that's not what happened. Not even close.

Instead, with a look of great surprise, she said, "When we get to Africa I am not going to be white. I am going to be black." And then I was the one with the look of great surprise. I started to laugh and I said, "Hosanna, you are not going to be black in Africa. You will always be a white girl."

But she did not find this nearly as humorous as I did. She then began to cry and adamantly said, "I am going to be black in Africa!" Ezra, who upon hearing the conversation had walked into the room, looked at me and said, "What are you going to do with this one, Dad?" Frankly, I was not quite sure! It never occurred to Gayle or I that Hosanna would ever think that she was going to become black once we got to Africa. But Hosanna was absolutely convinced that upon our arrival her skin was going to transform and turn black and she would look just like the other children there in the village.

After some time (picture big tears and a four-year-old saying, "But I want to be black!") we were able to sufficiently console and instruct the heartbroken Hosanna. She accepted the fact that God had made her as a girl with light skin and He had a divine purpose in that. We encouraged her that while her skin would always be white, we were thankful that God had given her a heart for a people who were a little bit different than her. Together we thanked Him that even though He was not going to change our skin, He has and will continue to change our hearts and lives as He unites them with a people who need the Gospel. And all the while, in my own heart, I thanked God for a "color-blind" daughter and for the hope of the Gospel for all men. "Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in His sight." Now that is Good News!