Five Things We’ve Learned
Roger and Sue have invested three decades in sharing Christ with an unreached people group in eastern Kenya.
We came to East Africa as newlyweds in 1986. We’ve had the joys and challenges of raising our family amidst a 99.9% Muslim Unreached People Group (UPG), and we praise the Lord that our children are now grown and walking closely with Him. We’ve added three to our family through marriage, and so far… two grandchildren!
For over three decades we’ve had the privilege of serving our Lord and striving to obey the great commission in this place – seeking to make disciples of Jesus and teach them to obey everything that our Lord commanded those very first disciples. We’ve found it’s healthy to do regular self-examination of our hearts, motives, strategies, and relationships – to see where God is pointing us to ‘cut something out’ or add or change how we’re doing something. God’s Word is living and active and very sharp – and we’re thankful!
Five of the main things we’ve learned in 30+ years of ministry:
Jesus is Worthy! He deserves our ALL and our BEST! We have the privilege to serve Him whole-heartedly. It’s not that we have to. No, we get to!
Be prepared to change plans! That includes the big picture, as well as daily routines. Our ideas are constantly being realigned with God’s leading and provision. And that’s a good thing! We often joke that we plan our daily schedule so that we have something to deviate from! Interruptions are Not interruptions! They are God’s PLAN! (Oh, how many times we’ve had to re-learn this one!).
Persistence in Prayer and Perseverance in ministry have been sort of forced on us by the sheer fact that ministry has moved forward very slowly & the people we serve among been very resistant. God continues to give us His joy and satisfaction in the fruit of obedience. We know that God has called us to be just where He’s got us. The results are not up to us; they are in His hands. We’ve redefined ‘success’ in ministry. It’s when we faithfully share the Gospel – and He’s blessed us with daily opportunities to share Good News from His Word. Deeds alone are not enough – we have to also share the Gospel with words (the local ‘heart language’ has proven very important in this.) Words alone are not enough – they need to be backed up by genuine love, deeds that go together with the message.
We need team! As a married couple, we’ve found it invaluable to pour into our husband/wife relationship. We share the joys and struggles. We find ways to do ministry together – to complement each other – to laugh together. This is the very most important relationship outside of Jesus, and loving each other well as a couple is the best thing we can do for our family and ministry. We also need other brothers and sisters/teammates/others and the National Church who we can share life and ministry goals with, be encouraged by and support and be supported by.
Abiding in Jesus is key! We need to spend extravagant time with Jesus – Praying and being in God’s Word. It’s very key to understand and utilize God’s Word and the Authority of Jesus Christ, which He has freely given to us today as disciples of His! Especially when it comes to prayer (and specifically prayer for the sick), praying with expectancy – that miracles will take place.
By Roger & Sue
Roger and Sue serve in Kenya among an unreached Islamic people group. At the time of this writing, they’ve served for three decades, sharing Christ at every opportunity and loving their community through Roger’s expertise in community development and animal health, and through Sue’s work as a nurse in a local clinic.
I know that God is the light unto my path and that the Lord determines my steps. But when the steps He determines are WAY off the path I thought He was lighting, we’ve got a problem!
As the sounds of early morning invade her day, she remembers why she came to this far off place.
An unexpected welcome for a team sharing Christ in south coastal Tanzania