‘For me to live is Christ, to die is gain’ (Phil 1:21)
When you have made a decision to die to yourself, living for Christ is the most amazing adventure. In 1992 we responded to an altar call at the Bloemfontein NCMI Conference, based on Psalm 2:8-9.
‘Today, I have become your Father. Ask of Me, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance.’
In the first year of our lives together, God burned in our hearts a Scripture which formed in us a capacity to adapt:
‘I will become all things to all men [/women] to win some’ (1 Corinthians 9: 19-23).
We served in Victory Faith Centre, learning to adapt to the ages and cultures we were called to serve; from children’s outreach camps at Pennington, to planting a youth group, to having noisy, messy moms and tots groups, to relief teaching at many different schools to gain credibility with the staff, to carrying a half-Beetle chassis to several schools to present a gospel drama, being booed for an anti-abortion drama, and later marrying young people who were saved in the youth we planted 10 years earlier. I can remember Lance learning to surf to win the surfers, sitting outside a club all night to rescue one of our “youthies”, falling off a horse three times in one ride to win the horse-riders, and preaching at Kloof High with bleached hair and a pony tail.
Today, I have become your Father. Ask of Me, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance.
Knowing the love of Father God has enabled us to love unreservedly. We can rely on Him for provision and protection, and model family for those around us. The inheritance of the nations can only be realised through this incredible spiritual family being expanded into every culture group in the earth.
From that day onwards, we trusted Jesus to provide for us to go to another nation every year on short-term mission trips. This was an exciting faith adventure, even when we had just planted a church in Fish Hoek in 1998 and had no income in a worldly sense. We would ask Him which nation, trust God for it, and go in faith, often with our children; Transkei, Namibia, Lesotho, Zambia, UK, Netherlands, Malawi, and Zimbabwe were some of our destinations.
In 2005, we sent Robert Chizou back to his hometown, Kande Village in Malawi, to plant a church. Through our friendship with him, God opened the door to the hearts of many pastors in Malawi, and we visited their churches with teams from Joshua Generation Church (JoshGen), and lately, Four12. In the past 3 years we have held Four12 leadership training times and seen further growth in the churches. The pastors long for pure Bible teaching and are hungry to learn about planning ahead and raising up leaders. They love the Holy Spirit and are fascinated by the teamwork they see demonstrated by our people. The “man of God” is replaced in action by the whole team flowing in the gifts of the Spirit.
The elders of that village said afterwards…that the people were so grateful that we got lost – they thought that God had forgotten about them.
We have experienced the miraculous power of God in deliverances, healings and salvations in many villages and towns while on short mission trips to Malawi. On one trip, we took a 5 1/2 hour detour, digging a sand bridge across a river, unloading at an elephant fence, and later preaching off the top of the Land Rover, seeing a whole village respond to the gospel. The elders of that village said afterwards in their greeting that the people were so grateful that we got lost – they thought that God had forgotten about them.
In 2016, we came back from Malawi convinced that God would take us there permanently at some stage, so we started building a 49m flat above our home and simplifying our lifestyle so that we would be ready to go when the Spirit released us. Two significant prophetic words confirmed this in the next year. We waited for Andrew and the rest of the team that went on the bike trip (2018) to return from Africa, and when Andrew said, “How soon can you relocate to Malawi?” it was a confirmation of timing. Despite being sure of God’s call, it has been difficult to leave the children and staff Sue has grown to love. Our JoshGen Sunningdale PM Congregation and our special blood family and foster daughters are so close to our hearts, and we have shed many tears.
One of the exciting developments is the answer to prayer that we would go in team, and Franco and Michelle (JoshGen Wellington Congregation) and Sheree (JoshGen Sunningdale PM Congregation) have resigned their jobs to move up with us. Later in the year, Anthony (JoshGen City Bowl Congregation) will follow. God has spoken clearly to each of them to relocate, and they have confirmed this with their eldership teams.
We are trusting God for the provision of finances to buy a property and set up a Four12 base at Senga Bay
We leave at the beginning of February for Lilongwe to register an NGO and get visas and driving documents. Initially, we will learn Chichewa, the local language. We are trusting God for the provision of finances to buy a property and set up a Four12 base at Senga Bay, close to Lake Malawi and 120km from Lilongwe, where we can host pastors and wives for training, as well as teams from other nations coming for short-term missions. You could fly in from South Africa in the morning and be at the base by the afternoon. The property has a 150 seater hall, 4-bedroom house, campsite, shop frontage and a staff house. Pray for the release of this amazingly suitable, empty property to us.
The work in Malawi will focus on strengthening the 100 churches that are part of Four12. There are Southern Zambian churches and people in Mozambique who will also be touched by the team. We will be working mainly with the pastors and leaders, equipping them to be more effective, and facilitating relationships among the Four12 churches – teaching them to find the presence of God (we need worship leaders to help this break open), building strong marriages, raising up leaders, seeing Kingdom culture over-ride unhealthy traditions, and bringing teams to model unity. Each weekend, we will be moving to a new church/village and living among the people, so that they can see the character of Christ in us on a daily basis.
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Pray about coming to minister with us in Malawi. Support us financially through the Four 12 bank account.
Click here: https://www.archive.four12global.com/get-involved/give/
Come and join us any weekend of the year or visit the Outreaches page on the Four12 website to join a team.
Click here: https://www.archive.four12global.com/outreaches/