Ivorians are amazed to see a white man work in fields for 5 to 7 hours in a day. Verlin gets many greetings as he goes weekly with M. to develop an agricultural project, a demonstration site where people will learn and practice skills of Godly obedience. The Lord placed on M.’s heart to offer 30 hectares (one ha. = 2.47 acres) of his family’s land for this farming endeavor. It will take several years to fully accomplish the following goals: a moringa grove to improve the nutrition of people in our region and fund CHE projects; a F.A.I.T.H (Food Always In The Home) garden to show families how to grow produce in a small space that provides balanced nutrition; a Farming God’s Way field to demonstrate the method that has dramatically increased yields of staple foods in other African countries; and two other crops for export that we can discuss later as project details are finalized.
The YouTube video link of this photo provides a 3-minute testimony of others using Farming God’s Way. Though we have no connection with their ministry, our projects use the identical methods. We know from experience (see Mandate to Move or Pillars of CHE) that it brings a similar sense of hope and purpose. Even more inspiring is the detailed video overview prepared by the Farming God’s Way organization. If you can spare 17 minutes, you will see how God’s hand is at work to change oppressive human dependencies to voluntary interdependence on Him. Agricultural improvements are just one part of the Community Health Evangelism (CHE) ministries we encourage to multiply in Cote d’Ivoire. Every pagan, Muslim, and Christian wants his or her crop production to be bountiful. Many local farmers become very discouraged since they do not know that God has already spoken to their need. By taking time to help people develop their assets, we open doors to share the Gospel from a Biblical approach of obedience, and God gets all the glory for the success.
This past Wednesday, one of our CHE trainers who pastors in a rural area came to visit. He testified that Ivorians are tired of subsistence farmers in other African nations, like Burkina Faso to the north, being more successful than they are–especially since Cote d’Ivoire’s land is richer! He is glad the Farming God’s Way method, which is used in Burkina Faso, will be on display locally. He includes agricultural improvements in the villages where his local flock is learning to plant churches.
Prayer and Praise:
- Pray for flourishing participation at the demonstration site now being plotted on the land.
- Pray for our safe travels to and from Abidjan this week. Ask for good meetings with the CHE university team on Monday, with church leaders on Tuesday, and no hassles for Verlin as he works to get his visa for Benin to attend a CHE conference there in July.
Verlin and Debbie