Blessed or Burdened?

Scott and Meg Rambo, missionaries serving in Uganda, Africa, train and disciple leaders. Meg shared, on their ministry blog, an important lesson she learned from their recent Disciple Nations Alliance training sessions. Read on to learn what we may be missing in our walks with Christ and the blessings He puts in our paths.

Scott and Meg Rambo

Scott and Meg Rambo

“When I first heard this question at the DNA training, I looked around to see how others would respond. Our group was a mix of American missionaries, Kenyans and Ugandans in full-time ministry, local pastors and a few lay members of the church. The answers given were a range of answers, and showed us glimpses of each other.

“After sharing this the facilitator looked at us and said, ‘WHY?! Africa has so much potential, and yet struggles.’ This led to an interesting conversation. Some of our pastors shared that the struggles were too big and too hard. That they had no way to get out of them. Another American said it was because sin has come into the world. Things are no longer operating the way God intended and people are also now sinful. One African leader said that the people don’t trust God. We certainly didn’t have the answers that many scholars have tried to find over the years, but it was a great conversation.

“Our facilitator ended our time with the following story:

‘The crested crane is the national bird of Uganda. It is protected. You may not kill it, and they are worth a lot. Their picture is everywhere, on the flag, on the money, on official documents. If the crane went to the government, it could ask for anything. It could say, “I want you to give me food and shelter and a life of luxury.” It has a very high value. And yet we find it digging in the dirt for worms. It doesn’t know its value. It doesn’t know where to look for resources.’

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“She told us that Africa is very similar. They are used to doing what they have always done. (If we are honest, there are many things us Americans do because it is the way it is done too.) Our African friends don’t see the potential all around them. But the truth is that Africa has been so blessed by God.

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Photo Credit: Meg Rambo

“What about us? Where has God blessed us that we are missing? What do we see as ‘normal’ or maybe even a burden, that God designed as a blessing? For me I knew right away. My boys. Some days feel more like a burden, or at best just normal. But the TRUTH is that each life is a blessing from God. Daily I have the same choice as my African friends. Am I going to take this blessing and nourish it and use it to bless others, or am I going to ignore the blessing. So I ask again, where are you blessed? Where is the potential that you are missing? And how can you take the blessings God has given you to further His kingdom?”

Click here to read the Rambos’ entire blog post.

Missions at Home

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Philip and Debbie Renfroe serve through support ministries in North America. In their latest prayer letter, the Renfroes update us on the nations being reached for God’s glory. Continue reading to find out how God is working and bringing ministries right to their front door!

“With the help of friends, I recently completed two memorial windows for our visitors to see a glimpse of God’s faithfulness to our family. In these days of so much confusion in the world, it is important that we remember what God has done, is doing, and will do if we obey Him. God is our provider, our healer, and our protector!

“Many of our visitors are young Indiana Wesleyan University students whom we welcome to our home each Sunday evening throughout the school year. We hosted students from Korea, China, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, India, and many other parts of the world. Yes, the world is indeed coming to us!

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Photo Credit: Philip and Debbie Renfroe

“These Sunday evening events are times for food, fellowship, and discussion about an important Biblical theme. Using materials from Disciple Nations Alliance, we had lively conversations as we discussed God’s intentions for the church and community.

“Philip is also excited about the people groups represented in his online Public Health classes. Philip has students representing Africa, Asia, and North America. The hours for class preparation, teaching, and grading are long, but God is producing fruit from these efforts. Recently Philip received a thrilling card from one of his former students who now works in China.

“God is opening other doors of ministry. After watching the movie War Room, I discovered a Bible study about prayer that was written by Stephen and Alex Kendrick, the directors of War Room. Last January, thirteen ladies came to our home for this eight-week study.

“It was apparent that these ladies wanted to learn how to pray. From January until the end of March, we studied The Battle Plan for Prayer. During this time, I found out from our pastor that our county has the worst child poverty rates in the state of Indiana. Philip came home from another meeting and informed me that Grant County also has the most meth (methamphetamine) drug labs in the state of Indiana, and Indiana has the most meth labs of any place in the United States. Our home county is the meth lab capital of the United States! As one of our Bible study members stated, ‘No person’s mind, no matter how many intelligent minds we have, can solve this problem…only God can!’

“In response, I asked the Bible study members, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if we saturated Grant County with prayer and saw God transform this place?’ Since then, someone gave us ten leader’s study kits for the Battle Plan for Prayer. We are asking God for forty groups of praying people to saturate our county with prayer. We now have approximately twenty groups who have either finished this Bible study, now doing it, or are planning to start the Bible study in the next few months. Please join us in praying for twenty more prayer groups. We are praying for a miracle in Grant County, Indiana!”

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Photo Credit: Philip and Debbie Renfroe

“Prayer means hope. Prayer means help. Prayer means relief.” (S. Kendrick & A. Kendrick, 2015, p. 19) “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV)

 

Exciting Opportunities That You Can Support

Jeff and Christine Stanfield are missionaries serving in Uganda. In their latest prayer letter, they presented some great opportunities to get involved with World Gospel Mission Uganda. Read on to find out how you can make a difference for those who need your help.

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“Next week a church in the U.S.A. will be doing a 5-K fun walk/run to fundraise money for the Orphan Scholarship Fund, providing education funds for about 170 orphans attending this school. Just $12 per month ($144 per year), covers the cost of a child’s tuition, textbooks, supplies, uniform, and daily hot lunch.

“We in WGM here in Uganda want to join the church through a run/walk on the 4th of July. We would love to have you join us in raising money for school scholarships!

“Here are a few options for your participation:

  • Get some friends together and walk/run during the July 4th holiday weekend or any time of your choosing. Solicit sponsors to raise money to help educate orphaned/vulnerable children who attend Kikongo Primary School on Buvuma Island in Lake Victoria. Be sure to send us photos of your walk/run!
  • Give a personal donation to the scholarship program
  • Get your church to join you in providing scholarship money for one or more orphans every year
  • Maybe you can think of other creative ways to help provide for these needed scholarships. Share your ideas and put one or more of them into action.

“All donations to the Orphan Island Scholarship program may be made to World Gospel Mission, by either sending a check to WGM or going online at www.wgm.org/orphans to donate.

“This summer WGM Uganda is hosting a DNA (Disciple Nations Alliance) Conference for our missionaries and partners in ministry here in Uganda. DNA stands for Disciple Nations Alliance. The mission of Disciple Nations Alliance is ‘helping the Church rise to her full potential as God’s principal agent in restoring, healing and blessing broken nations.’ You can read more about their strategy to accomplish their mission by checking out this link: www.disciplenations.org/about/our-strategy.

“WGM Uganda is making arrangements for the DNA Conference to take place 1-5 August 2016. It will cost approximately $300 per person. Some of our partners (pastors, church leaders, university students and others) would not be able to attend because of the cost. WGM Uganda hopes to cover the conference costs for our African friends attending.

“Why do we think DNA Conference training is important? Because the healing and transformation needed in Africa must begin with regenerated hearts and minds of the people of Africa. True and lasting transformation doesn’t happen through development projects or foreign aid. Rather, it happens through an inside-out process of renewing heart, mind and character; a process rooted in the gospel and a biblical worldview. When college students, pastors, church and community leaders experience such transformation, the results can be revolutionary.

“Helping people experience this transformation is what the DNA Conference Training is all about. It not only creates paradigm shifts, it also provides tools that help participants apply in concrete ways what they have learned, demonstrating Christ’s love and truth in ways that bring healing to the brokenness in their communities and culture.

“We hate to think that some of our partners who would benefit will be unable to attend simply because they cannot afford the lodging, food, or materials. $300 covers the costs of one attendee for five nights of lodging, meals and training materials.

kenya“Here are some ways you can join with us:

  • Pray for God’s transformative work to be done in the hearts and lives of all attendees
  • Provide a scholarship for one or more African attendees
  • Invite others to join with you providing scholarships for this DNA training
  • Share the opportunity with a Sunday School class, other church group, study group, family, friends and invite them to participate through prayer and provision of scholarship money”

Your scholarship donation will bring DNA’s wholistic, biblical teaching to Africans. Join the Stanfields and WGM Uganda in changing lives, and make a difference today!

https://www.wgm.org/uganda-conferences