Feb 3, 2011

Pray for these men: Missions to the glory of God

This afternoon at about 2:15 PM Central Time, four men from Sixth Street Baptist Church left on a journey that will take them to Guinea, West Africa in search of the Kakabe people.  This is the latest installment of a vision that began last summer when several of us starting conversing about the possibility of sending a team to West Africa.  These men are submitting to a radical obedience to Jesus Christ that has had a profound impact on them, their families, and our church.  We are also praying it has a profound gospel effect on the Kakabe people who have never been engaged at any time with the story of Jesus Christ. 

This team is (from left to right) Gary Hines, Myron West, Adam Long, and Eric Miller.  There is nothing overtly spectacular or different about them.  None of them have a seminary degree.  None of them are exceedingly great orators.  (Eric is our youth pastor and loves to preach to kids.)  As a matter of fact, three of them get very nervous about speaking in front of our church about anything.  They are not independently wealthy.  Twelve months ago none of them really had any idea that they would be traveling to a predominately Muslim country to travel into the African rainforest in an attempt to locate and engage of group of people who have never heard of the name Jesus.

These four guys are a testimony to our church that God wants to use all of us to expand his glory and his fame to every corner of our city and every continent on our planet.  They are beginning what we hope will be a partnership between Sixth Street and the International Mission Board of the SBC to send teams several times a year until the Kakabe people embrace the gospel, are discipled, and churches are planted.  It's hard to imagine how a church of 200 people in rural Alabama are going to accomplish this task.  We are in the midst of a city that is experiencing tremendous difficulty economically.  We are a church that is still trying to break out of the rut of mediocrity and apathy.  We are a church who, until the last 14 months, mostly did missions by giving money.  However, we believe that God will give us the Kakabe people for his glory.

These men have all left wives and young children to be obedient to God.  They have sold possessions in order to finance the trip.  They have prayed fervently and repeatedly over the last three months.  Now, they are about to step out on a plane and into the spiritual warfare of missions.  Here are some things we are committing to pray about as a church:
  • That the team would be able to physically locate and establish contact with the Kakabe people group.
  • That the team would find favor with the Kakabe tribal elders.
  • For a safe flight to Conakry, Guinea and safe land travel to the Timbo and KanKalabe areas.
  • For the physical and spiritual strength of the team members as they take the gospel to one of the darkest spiritual places on the planet.
  • For the wives and children of the men as they deal with the pain of physical separation and limited communication.
  • That God would remove any communication and language barriers.
  • That God will bind any evil spirits and remove spiritual barriers that have blinded the Kakabe people to the gospel.
  • That God will prepare the way by speaking to the Kakabe people in dreams and visions.
  • That the team would be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit and that His presence will flow through them.
  • That the light of Christ will penetrate the darkness of West Africa.
  • That God will break the hearts of the team as well as the entire church over the lostness of the Kakabe.
Till the Kakabe see the glory of Christ!