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It started like any other. An early morning putting the finishing touches on the message and Sunday School lesson. The girls getting their hair brushed. Levi busy finding some form of trouble! It was going to be like any other Sunday we thought.
A Different Room
When we got to church, we were told that we could not use our normal space because the school had need of it that day. Considering our church is completely mobile at this point, this was not a problem at all. After getting set up in the library, we welcomed people as the started trickling in for the Sunday School hour.
An Unexpected Seizure
As Sunday School was dismissed the people began to make their way outside for some fresh air and a cup of coffee. Suddenly, a lady who has just recently started attending our services began to have a seizure. Several of our people jumped into action and gently laid her on the ground. With no one really have any medical experience, all we could do was watch and pray. After the seizure subsided, the lady laid still. After several minutes, she regained conscienceness. Thankfully, our team members were able to help take her home and get her settled. A week later, she was back in church with us with a bright smile on her face just as before!
An Hungry Heart
After resuming our services, we had a wonderful spirit in the singing and preaching of the Word. Dan is preaching through the beatitudes and going to the very heart of Christianity. God has used this study to help remind our people that we don’t simply follow rituals or habits on Sunday morning, but we come to worship the Lord. After the service, a dear lady approached Dan and mentioned how much she is learning!
A Sad Visit
We concluded the morning service with a benevolence offering. Though many churches in the United States may do something similar, the Malagasy take this an extra step. When there is a death either in the church family or a loved one of a church member, the church comes together to collect an offering to encourage them. This is then followed by a personal visit of as many church members are available to go. The offering
we took on that Sunday was for a lady who has been attending our church since the beginning. Sadly, two days after giving birth to her second son, the baby died. As our church family entered her home that day (about 15 of us), tears began to fall. We presented our small monetary gift to her as is the custom and encouraged her in Lord. It’s hard to express the joy you feel as you see God’s people come together to encourage a brother or sister who is grieving. What a privilege it is for us to see this!
An Exciting Afternoon
After arriving home and eating a quick lunch, we welcome some of the believers into our home for our first soul-winning class. What a thrill it is to see these believers coming together hungry and ready to go out and share the good news of Jesus Christ. Lord willing, we will begin our organized soul-winning program in February. It has been exciting to see some of the believers getting excited about this and asking, “Pastor, when do we start?” Again, its hard to express the joy when the harvest is reaped and then they turn into the reapers!
A Final Visit
After finishing the training for the day, Dan left with some of the believers to go and visit the lady who had the seizures. As they came to the house, she was asleep and so they left quietly. The Lord then redirected his paths and led him to another man’s house who has been attending our English class. His son was saved several months ago and Dan is currently discipling him. This young man’s dad has been showing an interest in coming church. The Lord used the short time on Sunday evening to help build a closer relationship and we pray we will see a decision for Christ in the near future.
A Faithful Promise
The day was concluded with a beautiful full rainbow. It is hard to look at rainbow and now reflect on God’s faithfulness and promises. As for us in Madagascar, God promised to be with us unto the end of the world. He has promised to go before us and prepare the way. He has promised that the harvest is plenteous. He has promised to never leave us or forsake us!
The Browns to Madagascar
“That thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations. Let the people praise thee, O God; let all the people praise thee.” ~Psalm 67:2-3