Thursday, December 13, 2012

Faith with Works (by Terri)

On this trip to Kenya, I was introduced to a man whose faith was demonstrated in action. Pastor Timothy (pictured below with his wife, Florence) is one of the head pastors the ALC foreign mission is working with in Kenya. He shared with us that he had been challenged to deny his faith in Jesus Christ or else be shot. He refused to deny Christ. He was shot in the arm; the scars remain as evidence. This action in and of itself spoke volumes of the depth of Faith this man has. This Faith was further demonstrated when he was again confronted with this man and chose to forgive him. This forgiveness was not only in word, but he also chose not to press charges when it was brought before the court. 

When I hear stories like this, I wonder how I would respond.  I always conclude that it would only be by and through the power of the Holy Spirit within that I could possibly stand against such persecution. I wonder if the persecution we face today in North America is of a subtler form, drawing us into denying our faith in the seemingly small, inconsequential things. For example, perhaps,  striving and conniving with everyone else to ‘get ahead’ in life, is in essence denying the truth of who our Provider really is, and demonstrating a Faith with no actions. It is a sobering thought and one that brings me to that beautiful position on my knees before the feet of Jesus as with the man in Mark 9:24 – “I believe; help thou mine unbelief.”
Pastor Timothy shared his heart for his partnership with the mission, stating “deny us everything, but don’t deny us your prayers, with those we can move mountains. When you come, bring us the word of God."
Let us continue to lift one another up in prayer, encouraging one another in word such that our works would be reflections of the faith within and nothing less. 

Pastor Timothy with his family. 

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