The wind blew and it felt so humid and hot. He was swimming deep down in his thoughts as he was trying to recall what had happened in the previous day. Ever since he got the job at the sugar plantation in Marromeu, Tinos has never seen what he does with his earnings. After receiving his salary he would go straight to drink and squander all the money.
The previous day had started by friends inviting him to just pass through the bar and get just one pint each before they go home. However, it ended being a drinking spree that led into the wee hours of the following morning. As he had looked into his pockets the following morning he had seen his pockets empty. “What really happened to my money?” he asked himself.
Tinos’ life had been marred with addiction to alcohol. Although he is a non-smoker, alcohol had been his water. Each and every day would be a dear opportunity to drink again and enjoying himself but certainly the following morning will be pain and more pain. This had been the trend for long and he had been in that position for years. Family life had been badly severed with chaos, poverty, hunger and misery being the silhouette of his family. The fighting with his wife was the order of the day and his children were all malnourished.
The alcohol addiction is a common factor that affects many people in the nation of Mozambique. The law doesn’t prohibit the abuse of alcohol and in fact it is viewed as an essential part of the diet in the Mozambican culture. When you go to other countries the laws do not permit the consumption of alcohol in undesignated areas but sadly in Mozambique it is allowed to drink alcohol anytime and anywhere. This has influenced people to be alcohol addicts and in both urban and rural, both males and females are seen consuming alcohol in excess. This therefore has led to the youths to emulate and they believe the abuse of alcohol is a painkiller for forgetting their troubles and tribulations.
The life at Tinos’ home was really messy and pejorative. Just by merely looking at what his household looked like, it was a clear panorama of how misery looks like. The pain the kids were going through was written all over their faces and poverty there was so loud that we couldn’t quantify the decibels of noise it was making. We couldn’t even talk about school because it was quite obvious that the pain the kids were going through at home meant that there wasn’t any extra money that would be used in investing in their education.
As Tinos sat down under a big mango tree at his home, he lifted up his eyes and saw a team of visitors coming to his house. Grappled by fear as he felt that he had done something wrong the previous night at the Bar, he looked at them with feeble eyes. He felt that probably he was in another problem which could be bigger than what he would ever imagine. Looking at the team without any energy in his body, his eyes were clearly saying that, “I am here and vulnerable and defeated already.” To his surprise, the strangers were all smiles when they were looking at him. Smiles are contagious always, as he saw the smiles on the team’s faces, his face quickly brightened up and he also had a smile on his face.
The team was comprised of EHC workers who were going home to home sharing about Jesus Christ. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is a “one treatment for all”. As the team shared the Gospel with Tinos, his heart was brought closer to them and he opened up about his personal life. He started to narrate about how he started drinking at a tender age. He felt his life had been so demolished that it could not be repaired anymore. The time wasted was so much that it couldn’t be repaid. He felt like he was drowning in the pool of humongous sorrow that would just suffocate him to death. All hope was gone and there wasn’t any ray of light left in his heart. Darkness had engulfed every part of his life and that of his family.
As they shared various pieces of literature with him and explained how Jesus could give him New Life, a glimpse of hope was evident in his eyes. He wanted to hear more about this Jesus who is the giver of hope and life. He wanted to hear more on how other Christians would accept someone they knew as a drunkard into the church. His concerns were so significant and evidently affecting him. “Jesus loves you the way you are. You just need to give him all the pieces of your broken life and he will meant them and restore your life to the factory settings. You will be able to live again the life that the LORD has always wanted you to have,” Tiago one of the team members explained to him.
“I want Jesus to come and cure me from alcohol addiction and restore my family. Please can you wait for my wife to come back she has gone to fetch firewood so I also want her to hear the Gospel you are sharing. I want my family to be happy again,” Tinos said with tears pooling up in his eyes.
As the team waited for his wife to come back they continued to share more words of Hope in Christ with him and he was evidently receiving his transformation and a new vessel of Christ was being birthed in him. As they finished praying for Tiago, it wasn’t before his wife also arrived and only to find glad tidings awaiting her at home. The family managed to have their deliverance.
Tinos opened the doors of his home to have a Christ Group planted at his home and he has developed so much passion for the Gospel because of the BFAM lessons that he is receiving together with his wife. One of Tinos’ friends Fanuel, is also attending the Christ Group although some of his friends have not yet accepted the Gospel.
When asked if there were any significant changes at their home, Margarita, Tinos’ wife said,” I used to be a married widow. I was married but living as a widow. Jesus gave me back my husband. Even if we don’t have money at our home these days, we are a happy family because every day my husband arrives back home on time. Jesus is indeed my best friend who took all my worries away.”
Tinos says he can’t continue to associate himself with his old friends who are still drinking because he is afraid that they might influence him again to go back into drinking. “I am not strong enough yet to resist beer temptation so I don’t want to be tempted that is the reason why I am avoiding them,” Tinos said with a chuckle.
-Godfrey B., Mozambique, Africa
He heard the sound of crying. It could only be his wife. For two years their marriage had been childless and unhappy. they'd fought and shouted. If she'd cried before, it was only from anger or frustration.
But the sound he now heard was different. His wife sounded not angry, but broken. He went to her and found her, her body shaking with sobs, her eyes red with tears. At first she said little but held out to him a small booklet. It was a Christian booklet with verses from the Bible.
Then between her sobs, his wife confessed a terrible secret. She'd been trying to kill him by witchcraft. The witch doctor in their African village had given her power, she said, even to handle snakes without being harmed. But the Christian booklet showed her that power belonged to God alone. Only He had the power of life and death. Only He had the power to hear her sins and forgive them.
All that night the two of them prayed to the Christian God. Even when the sun rose in the sky once more, still they prayed and confessed their sins. They asked Jesus to be their Savior.
The evil of witchcraft was broken. And in the Love of God they were able to love each other.
Taken with permission from Page 14 of 'The Word Works' (A compilation of WMP literature testimonies), by Mark Ward, Sr.
We put things in our pockets every day without thinking: loose change, business cards, gum wrappers. We never consider that an item we drop in might have a transformative effect on our lives, but that was the case for Hakiziyaremye Vianney. Vianney was selling goats and sheep in Rwanda’s crowded Rugarama street market when he noticed a sudden burst of activity. People were fighting to receive booklets from a group of EHC evangelists. Curious, Vianney took one and glanced at it before absentmindedly slipping it into his pocket.
“He was a drunkard and was beating his wife every day,” says Ananie Bagaragaza, the EHC National Director of Rwanda. “He wasn’t interested in hearing the Gospel.” When Vianney came home that night, he emptied his pockets and didn’t even notice the gospel booklet, The Way to God, drop onto the table. Propping up his feet to relax, he asked his wife, Everyne, to bring him a glass of water. When Everyne didn’t respond, he looked up, irritated that he had been ignored. To his surprise, she was coming toward him slowly, carrying a glass of water in one hand and reading the gospel booklet with the other. “The content of the whole booklet pleased her,” Ananie says, “but the message on page 43, where it said Jesus is the only way to God, deeply penetrated her heart.” Annoyed that a piece of paper had stolen Everyne’s attention from him, Vianney stormed off to a bar. When he returned hours later, Everyne was still reading the gospel booklet. At that point, Vianney’s annoyance turned to curiosity, and he asked to read the booklet for himself. “After reading, I thought immediately of God and my death,” Vianney says. “That night, I had a dream.” In Vianney’s dream, he was on the verge of death and surrounded by a crowd of people. With cruel laughter, they told him that, because he had rejected Jesus, it was too late for him to receive salvation. Desperation and regret washed over Vianney. Suddenly, a tall, strong man emerged from the crowd and had compassion on him. This man told Vianney that it wasn’t too late.
When Vianney shared his dream with Everyne the next morning, she was thankful that God had used it to reach her husband. They immediately went to a Christian church near their village, and the pastor prayed with them. The couple accepted Christ, and it wasn’t long before their entire family of eight was saved. “The amazing thing is that they were baptized together,” says Ananie. “On Christmas Eve, they were both baptized.”
Today, Vianney and Everyne’s marriage is transformed. They are being discipled by a pastor, and they regularly volunteer in EHC home-to-home evangelism. Everywhere Vianney goes, he carries a pocketful of gospel booklets to share with others whenever he has the chance.
“Now, I and all my family are baptized and have Jesus as our Savior,” Vianney says. “It is all because of a gospel booklet. Praise God!”
Every Home For Christ uses our literature to reach the lost all over the world.
This article was taken from their webpage with permission.
“Firstly I would like to thank you and . . . everyone who helped in the printing of booklets you send me. 'Let’s Praise the Lord' booklets make a lot of people turn to see what we are doing on stages throughout Zimbabwe, when everyone was invited to 'His Praise Choir'. A lot of people just fell on the spot and start crying, tearing their clothes because of evil spirits, . . . when we were reading through the booklet with them, because the power of God was working in them and the demons were driven away. A lot of people decided to join us and pray with us. We appeared in the most sinful place in Zimbabwe (Mbare) and preached the Word of God. One woman came [out of] the crowd and climbed on the stage and repented of her witchcraft. She said she had killed many people but now she needed to let Jesus forgive her and she said she needed to be baptized. In Mbare we have a very big shortage of booklets because a lot of people there showed so much interest in reading and obeying God and stopped their bad deeds. So many people were much excited and almost in tears by the booklets, 'Who Am I That A King Would Die in My Place?' and 'The Way to God'. I don't know how I can thank you for the parcels you send me. Only God knows how pleased and happy I am. The most exciting is that the parcels you send me are almost finished during distribution of the Word of God and they are in demand now. So may you please help me again with hundreds or thousands of booklets. . . containing the Word of our holy God. Please teach me how to be a professional distributor, leader, or anything you need to teach me about God so that I can . . . be a missionary or any good man on earth. Yours, a fifteen-year-old boy in need.” -Simbarashe M., Zimbabwe, Africa
We went on 21 missions in 6 counties impacting 59 villages and towns in 2 countries, Liberia and Ivory Coast. A mission can last 1-7 days. We did 2 three day conferences. Our projector was used 3 times showing the Jesus film and other Christian training films. We baptized 42 people. Many had the Gospel presented to them and many made confessions of faith asking our Lord for salvation and forgiveness. We printed 9,000 pages of Bible training material. We made 491 manuals.
We had 41 students in our level 1 class and several that listen in. They came from 9 counties which represent over 1/2 of the 16 Liberian counties. We also had students from three countries; Ivory Coast, Nigeria, and Liberia. The students have returned to spread the Gospel as they were taught. Except for Nigeria, we will also be sending our field leaders to them throughout the year to assist them in producing fruit, to encourage, provide material, and continue to train.
Exciting news! One of our students comes from an unreached people group of Liberia and is a former Muslim. He comes from the Vai tribe. Joshua Project considers the Vai to be an unreached people group. They are a Muslim mixed with animism stronghold. He is from Grand Capemont County, a county we have never sent a disciple to. He is determined to go back to them and share the gospel!! He and I have agreed that he should stay on our base for at least a month to attend level 4. While here for the month we will continue to train and prepare him. We plan on sending a mission team with him when he returns.
Some of these Bible Institute students were unknown to us having been brought by our Lord. But most all of these students have come because our field leaders on motorbikes have made an impact on them while visiting their communities. We have been to 13 of the 16 counties evangelizing, discipling and working towards church plants.
Our press shop wall structure should be complete this week.
As I type this report our dental team is preparing to pull their first tooth. Exciting!!! Bad teeth bring much pain and even death. This is a huge blessing for the SE of Liberia where hundreds of thousands have had no access to a dentist.
Prayer requests: We praise God for an anointed Level 1 class. Pray for our Bible Institute Level 4 class that starts on February 20th, each class lasts 2 weeks. Praise God our dental clinic is in operation. Pray that we can start distributing our water filters. Surely I broke a toe (no X-ray equipment) in a motorbike mishap. Pray for healing.
Inspiring & Insightful articles from WMP Staff, Ambassador Network Members, & Friends