Good News Transforming Lives for Good
Stories of freedom and hope are coming from the countryside in Southeastern Ethiopia as the Good News of Jesus Christ is reaching hungry hearts and minds. Our church planting partners are teaching Christians to bless their neighbors, sharing God’s word with them in an open and gracious manner. When appropriate, believers are praying for others with afflictions and demon possession.
In the case of Chiko Dabecha, a village missionary, he emulated the Good Samaritan by finding a suicidal person on the roadside and sharing the love of Christ with him. The man was saved from his despair through this divine encounter. In another instance, a “missionary” (lay-person committed to leading exploratory Bible studies and finding persons of peace. (Luke10:6-7)) was praying for his neighbors when two demonized women came to his house. Not sure their purpose, he prayed for them anyways and they were delivered.
While in our Western context we don’t often see demon possession as visible as our brothers and sisters in places like rural Ethiopia where spirit worship is common. Regardless the environment, these demonic forces don’t have any good intentions for the people who are afflicted by them. Thankfully, God has given us the gift of prayer and he delivers freedom by the Holy Spirit.
The blessing of church planting or disciple-making movements is they spread quickly and naturally, engendering true commitment to a new life in Christ rather than an emotional decision at a rally or revival meeting that sometimes is not from the heart. Families and neighbors learn about the good news together and have the freedom to evaluate the claims of Jesus and God’s for themselves. Those who want to continue are free to do so although some challenges are faced when families are opposed to the newfound faith of one of their members. Finally, 59 people received leadership training in order to continue the movement in their own village.
Our partners, Horn of Africa Evangelical Mission, care deeply about the people in this region, their spiritual and physical poverty. It is a privilege to work with them. We’re thrilled to see how God is bringing his peace and salvation to families in West Arsi and Bale.