Ministry in Qonce, South Africa
March, April & May 2023
Salt, Light, and Yeast
Matthew 13;33(NLT) “Jesus also used this illustration: The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeates every part of the dough.”
Family, Friends, and Ministry Partners:
I hope this newsletter/journal finds everyone enjoying their summer and you are seeing the Lord new and fresh daily. The title “Salt, Light, and Yeast sums up the last three months of ministry in South Africa.
In March, I had to remember that Matthew 5:13 (NLT) says, “You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless.” In remembering the scripture, I realize that salt in a sweet recipe makes the sweetness more flavorful. The Lord’s presence got sweeter and sweeter as He allowed me to be salt in the lives of my students at Teleios Christian School, the expanded ministry in Tyutyu village at Jityaza Combine Primary School, and the expanded ministry in Ginsberg village at Forbes Grant SS High School. We are allowed to pray with the students in public schools. As these ministries are developing in the villages, I am seeing teaching staff and principals with a real hunger for God to use them to make an impact into the lives of their learners. God is opening doors so that I am able give encouragement and walk along with these two additional schools and their learners. There are over one hundred students in some classrooms. The math, science, language arts, and the art teacher I met were engaging the students. Despite the cold classrooms because of broken glass windows and a burn down science lab, I see that the Christians are sharing the word of God. The grain offering in the Old Testament always had to have salt added for God to accept the offering. God is asking all of us to be salt, flavoring of the Holy Spirit, so that He will accept our offering of worship wherever we are on His creation we call Earth.
In April we celebrated Easter, and you should have received my Easter card and the Easter newsletter. We saw the light of God opening the extended ministry and fellowship at Calvary Baptist and Bethel Baptist. I worshiped at Bethany Emmanuel, Calvary and Bethel Baptist churches hearing the praises to God in English, Afrikaans, and Xhosa. God’s light showed me how to come along side these church Pastors to spreading the Gospel in the surrounding community. My Father God is showing me how to share His love and how to really love the church community, the real Body of Christ. Some of the village churches said they do not get to see many missionaries from overseas as much as before. They missed the fellowship of saints who came from overseas. They still need training for the village pastors and for people who cannot afford to attend Bible colleges. There is still a need to gather as the body of Christ. God is speaking Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world – like a city on the hilltop that cannot be hidden.” God is still calling all of us to go anywhere and be willing to be sent anywhere.
In May, I continued my afterschool tutoring with my students, which is now mostly reviewing for Exams in June. I went with the students as they started playing sports against another school. The boys formed two soccer teams and the girls formed one netball team. They did so well despite only two weeks of practice. One of the students that thinks she is a loner became a team player although she did not play. There was also a new youth leader installed at Calvary Baptist Church. This young lady articulated so well to the congregation, just how much God was calling her to the youth ministry. I saw a shy young woman was now bold in the Lord. I attended the 2023 Reload Conference of Women’s Department of the Baptist Union. The theme was “Nailed It to The Cross”. That is where I learned about the good yeast and the bad yeast. The women’s bible study used the book, “When Jesus Stole My Bread”, by Durbin Paul and the theme song for the conference was “Nailed to the Cross” by Rend Collective. Women’s Department president Heather Sullivan, Joy and the Reload Committee did an excellent job. I made many new friends from different parts of South Africa. What stuck with me the most was a reminder to look at my motives so that I am adding yeast of the Kingdom of Light not yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees, the Kingdom of darkness. Lastly, I celebrated Pentecost which brought new clarity on the passage in Matthew 13:33 (NLT), “Jesus also used this illustration: “The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough.” The Holy Spirit living in me must get into all the secret places where Christ want change in my life so that the Kingdom purpose will be revealed in and through my life.
Special Prayer Request: In the first week of June, one of the members of my Mission Partnership Team (MPT) Agape, James Gidney, went home to be with the Lord. He was a man truly after the heart of God. He is the one that sent you all the beautiful cards (Thank-you, Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas). He kept you all up to date by sending out my newsletters. James was an engineering graduate like me, he was an aeronautical engineer. I met James when we were both involved in the Mission Society of Trinity Baptist Church. We both shared the same passion for young people to love science, to love mathematics, but most of all to love the Lord. He was always supportive of the ministry in South Africa. So, when I asked him to be a part of MPT Agape as the communications person, his answer was “yes”. He said, “I was ready to serve anywhere on the team but hoped it would be the communication position.” He always had words of encouragement during our monthly MPT meetings. He was looking forward to one day coming on a short-term mission’s trip to Qonce, South Africa. He was even learning isiXhosa with me. MPT Agape and I are still processing James’ going home to be with the Lord. He always exhibited the Fruit of the Holy Spirit every time you met him and showed the Fruit of the Holy Spirit in anything he did. James will truly be missed by MPT Agape and I. Right now, I ask for prayers for Brother James’s mother and sisters who live in New York.
“Enkosi kakhulu, ndiyabulela.” (Thank you very much, I am grateful.)
God bless and keep you all,
Qonce, South Africa
Contact Email: firstname.lastname@example.org