Over the past year, we have often asked you to pray for the village of Gimi (not the real name). That is where we launch a local Community Health Evangelism (CHE) agricultural project, winning or training some others along the way. This is a spiritually resistant village being penetrated for the sake of the Gospel. It brings transformation in the way people think and live eternally. Because the enemy does not want the Gospel to penetrate and liberate Gimi, there have been obstacles.
The first man who welcomed Verlin and M. [a believer who offered his land for use to demonstrate Farming God’s Way (FGW) production of corn, a grove of moringa trees, and a F.A.I.T.H. garden (relevant manuals at each prior link)] was beaten by the youth of the village; M. was in a serious motorcycle accident in November which will prevent him from doing physical work for several more months;the young man from the village hired to clear land was bitten by a snake in early December, and so it goes as we overcome thanks to our Lord!
This week M. was stunned when a few leaders of the village lied about him and the project in a meeting of regional chiefs. Also, the same leaders gave a Chinese man authority to plant soy on a portion of M.’s land for a year without M.’s participation or approval though all recognize him as the legitimate owner of the land. M., Verlin, and two other witnesses met with a government mediator today to address the situation. The mediator was excited about the moringa and corn projects, saying these entrepreneurial approaches that facilitate new and improved farming techniques are exactly what most Ivorians want and need today. He will investigate the situation next week. We expect a speedy resolution to the current obstacle, but it appears that the animosity of a few villagers is a deep issue that will need much work in prayer. Similar chicanery will rear its ugly head again in the future until their eyes are opened spiritually.
Prayer and Praise:
Praise: Generous giving to our mission account in December will allow us to continue here in resident ministry for a time! Thank you so much, financial partners and friends, for giving faithfully each month and abundantly at the end of the year. We’ll have a better sense of how to manage our time here this year as we prepare the quarterly report in weeks to come.
Praise: Debbie’s residence papers were processed without delay. We verify Verlin’s Monday. Pray for the many issues related to Gimi. Ask that M. increases in wisdom and finds consensus with village leaders while protecting his rights as the landowner. Pray for opportunities to continue spiritual conversations and successively break strongholds there. Continue to pray for the second week of a pilot DMM Discovery Study training at a local church in Bondoukou. Last week’s session went well.
Your partners in the Gospel,
Verlin and Debbie