By Tim Schulz
I hope this update finds you all well at home in whatever adventure God is leading you. Of the little Kinyarwanda we have learned on this trip, Muraho is a word that we have been using a lot. It is a way of greeting people who you haven’t seen in a while and it’s been such a cool word to use because even though we do not know a majority of the people we have met here, it feels as if we are being accepted into a family that we have not seen for a long time whenever we meet a person. It really opens my eyes as to how we are all the body and the family of Christ no matter where we come from and when we come together, even if we have never met, we can come together and celebrate as a family that comes together.
This is just one of the many revelations that the Lord has been putting on my heart during our time in Rwanda. It has been such a blessing and an honor to be able to serve the people who make up F.V.A. (Faith Victory Association), which partners with New Mercies Ministries. The faith and the hope and love that these people have for Jesus has truly humbled my heart, and the powerful way in which Jesus is moving through their lives to expand His kingdom is so prevalent.
Having constantly observed this attitude and great joy in all the people to which we have been able to minister, I have been thinking about how often I choose joy and love and Jesus’ promise over the discouragement and turmoil of everyday life. We live in such a fast paced society bent on success and it is easy to get discouraged, overwhelmed, and extremely busy with our lives. Though we are seeking the Lord amidst this chaos, when was the last time that you really stopped and recognized the true beauty and glory of our amazing Father? When was the last time that you stopped and thought about the only reason you have your job, have your family, and even the breathe that you’re breathing is because your great Father stands for you and watches over you constantly—always having your best interest in mind? When I see people in Rwanda who could have so many reasons to complain, be hopeless, and be frustrated say “Thank you Father for the very life and breathe that you have given me,” I find myself examining how often I count those blessings in my life and how all my comforts, blessings, and even life could be taken away in the blink of an eye.
Beloved, Jesus loves us and wants us to fall into the plan He has for our lives so much, but this isn’t just a one way street. Our Father deserves so much praise because without Him we would literally have the ability to do nothing. This is where our faith comes in. In Hebrews 11, there are so many examples of people through the Bible who were literally nation changers and who had such a great extent of faith even when nothing made sense. But through their faith, the Lord worked through them to ultimately bring them into His glory. So my final question to you is, do you choose to have faith and peace even when everything seems unknown and the storm is around you? Do you choose to give the glory to our Father? These are simple questions but they can be challenging too. Obviously, saying this is easier than doing it. We are wired in such a way that it’s extremely easy to see how hard everything in our lives is, but imagine how much more we could be His hands and feet by choosing His joy and peace. All we have to do is simply ask Him and He will provide. More specifically, choose to praise Him for every aspect of your life and you will discover His joy by coming before His feet.
Don’t worry, we been having a ton of fun while thinking about these deep thoughts. The Lord is definitely moving in me and my team members’ hearts on this trip. The community and love that the Lord has provided through each one of my team members is amazing, I could not ask for a better team. Each individual on the team is so precious and it has been so amazing to see how the Lord has been leading each one of us on this trip—I continually thank the Lord for each one of them.
I am so excited to see how else the Lord is going to move through this trip and I continue to pray for His provision, presence, and grace to be so prevalent on this trip. Praise the Lord for what He has already done and what He’s going to do. See you all soon, but for now Jesu aragukunda! Love you all! Murabeho!!