Redacted Show Notes
This episode is a conversation with a man working in a country where persecution of Christians is increasing. He spoke freely in our conversation, but he requested that I keep his name from appearing where a Google search could tag him. I’m going a step further and keeping the name of his organization out of the show notes as well.
- Over 700 wells drilled to provide clean, safe water in the poorest areas of the country.
- Grew up in a Christian home. Father and grandfather were pastors.
- Had understanding that he too would become pastor.
- Attended New Mexico State University.
- He put off declaring a major because he didn’t want to take two years of a foreign language.
- Before he finished he felt called to go to Bible college.
- He graduated and went to work in his dad’s church.
- It wasn’t working as he hoped. So he went back to college.
- He got a business degree with emphasis in church management.
- Few churches wanted young church business managers.
- Ended up working in the insurance industry, doing worker’s comp.
- God put a restlessness in him. He felt he was missing his purpose in life.
- He told God, “You haven’t told me what to do.”
- The burning question: “How do you hear the Holy Spirit speak?”
- If you think God is speaking, how do you know it’s really him?
- He was raised to believe that following Christian rules pleased the Lord so you can hear his voice.
- It’s taken years for him to get free from the legalistic Christian mindset and experience God’s grace.
- Part of the process was reading the Scriptures and exchanging false beliefs for the truth.
- He was praying, “Lord, what do you want me to do with my life? I feel like I’m not going anywhere.”
- The Holy Spirit spoke to him during a sermon on Luke 4:18 and said, “This is what you are to do.”
- “The Spirit of the LORD is upon me, for he has anointed me to bring Good News to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim that captives will be released, that the blind will see, that the oppressed will be set free,
- He started looking for a seminary so he could be ordained. He completed his degree.
- He quit the insurance company and got started in a startup church.
- It was the wrong job for him. He only lasted a year.
- A class in seminary about the poor in Latin America challenged his faith.
- His new prayer became, “Lord, I want to experience the kind of genuine faith the poor possess.”
- He prayed, “Send me to Asia, Africa or Latin America.
- When the chance came to go to Asia, he didn’t want to go.
- As he prayed about why he felt afraid, God showed him his own heart.
- God said, “You don’t trust me.”
- He ask God to forgive him and replace his fear with faith.
- He went to Asia and returned home, but still didn’t feel any direction from God for his life.
- He got an email from a man he met when he was in Asia asking for an introduction to the church he had been part of.
- He set up the meeting. And nothing notable happened.
- A year later, the church called and said they were sending a team to Asia. They asked him to go, since he knew the man there better than they did.
- A few days later he got a friend from the man in Asia, asking him to come.
- He got to share the gospel with the people who came. But he felt something was missing.
- He began praying differently. “Lord, I want to make a difference in practical ways as well as spiritual.”
- A few days later, the group visited a village, and people begin dancing and celebrating.
- The church he’d introduced the local man to had given money for a well. They were celebrating the opening of their new well.
- He learned that water was scarce in this part of Asia. People walked for miles to fetch water each day.
- The new well was 400 yards from the village.
- He discovered it would only cost $300 to pipe the water into the village. He had that much in cash for gifts.
- Instead of buying gifts, he gave the money to cover the cost of pipe.
- The team visited another village and present the gospel message.
- An old man came forward and said, “I’m not interested in your message, or this Jesus.” We need help.
- “The government sends us medicine, but the reason we’re sick is because our water is bad.”
- He heard someone call his name, but there was no one near him.
- He realized it was God speaking. He said, “What do you want?”
- God said, “I want you to bring them water.”
- He argued with God and told him, “I can’t do this.”
- God said, “You need to trust me.”
- He went to the village leader and said, “I’ll bring you water in a year.”
- He returned to the States and God gave him the connections and resources to drill a well within seven months.
- That was in 2001. And he hasn’t stopped.
- His organization is now involved in children’s homes, outreach to lepers,
- You can’t have a blind eye and deaf ear when God shows you stuff.
- He places the work in God’s hands and relies in God to make it happen.
- And he has to pay attention that his personal relationship with God is based on grace and not the “Christian” works.
- He reminds himself it’s only by Jesus that he’s made whole.
- Serving God has to come from love for God.
- He continues to strive to be like Jesus and avoid becoming self-righteous like the Pharisees.
- At the dedication of a water project, a swarm of flies came and landed on him.
- It was mid-day and hot, around 105. The flies were on him and no one else.
- He wondered if the files were an attack from Satan.
- Beelzebub means, “Lord of the flies.”
- He asked for a jacket. The only one available was a down coat.
- But he put it on because the flies were so bad.
- There are over 333 million gods worshiped in this country.
- He often sees a spiritual battle opposing his work.
- What if you could have a beer with Jesus?
- He wouldn’t have questions. He sees Jesus walking on the water and inviting him out of the boat to play on the water.
- I pledge to ask our listeners to sponsor a well.
Links we mention
I said that this podcast would sponsor a well. The cost is low: $2000. I’ve heard of other organizations who dig wells in Africa that have to raise between $10,000 and $35,000 for each well. Click the button below to go to our GoFundMe campaign.
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