Scriptures In Use (SIU) has sustained a vision to reach unreached, unengaged and underserved populations around the world for more than 35 years. SIU trainers come alongside church planters and other believers among oral cultures, training them to use oral Bible strategies that are simple, effective, and easily reproducible to reach their local communities and to go to the unreached in their region and beyond. Billions of people have not yet heard God’s great story. Opportunities abound. We want to mobilize for God’s Great Commission and are seeking courageous men and women to join us as we partner with fellow believers around the world.
One of our long-standing, beloved partners in West Africa, Rene Mbongo, recently passed into Glory to be with our Lord Jesus for eternity. His passing came suddenly due to the rapid onset of COVID-19 and complications associated with the virus. We are grieving his loss and praying for his wife, Faustine, children and grandchildren. Our Lord tells us in Psalm 116:15 (NIV):
“Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his faithful servants.”
We want to honor and give tribute to this man of peace and man of God who impacted many lives and shared Jesus and the Love of our Savior with so many.
Here at Scriptures In Use, we often talk about the need to stay “on task” and “in alignment” to our mission. We want to avoid the dreaded “Mission Drift” of trying to do too many things by ourselves, thus jeopardizing the accomplishment of our vision or causing it to fall by the wayside. One of the ways we do this is by finding ways to leverage the expertise and strengths of like-minded ministries. This maximizes the talent, time and treasure of all the people and organizations involved. The Lord has delivered such an opportunity for Scriptures In Use.
Our SIU team recently held a “Celebrate Christmas Together” virtual event over Zoom. We had lots of fun fellowshipping with one another and praising and thanking God because he has sent us a mighty Savior. We were overwhelmed with the presence of the Holy Spirit and His reminder of the many prophecies fulfilled in the coming of our Messiah, the Lord Jesus. One of our Missionary couples memorized the Christmas story (Luke 1.5-2.20) and as they storied it in our fellowship and prayer time, one part, sometimes called Zechariah’s Song, especially spoke to me. . . .
As we come through the Thanksgiving season and enter the Christmas season I am overwhelmed with feelings of gratefulness and thankfulness for our Lord — our indescribable, loving, faithful God who gave us the greatest gift of all in His son, Jesus Christ, the salvation that comes in believing in Him and the opportunity to spend eternity with Him in his eternal Kingdom…whew…What a gift!!! He is known for His Good Gifts . . .
This year has been a series of unexpected events, most of which have been quite difficult and extremely challenging. I would not rank it as one of our best years. Twenty-twenty brought global pandemic resulting in sickness, death, job loss and financial crisis. This year also brought civil and political unrest and increasing numbers of natural disasters. Many peoples of all nations are experiencing pain and suffering on so many fronts. Yet, the Lord continues to give blessings . . .
During this global pandemic, I am attending many video conferences and webinars. A clear message of “be creative” and “try something new” keeps surfacing. SIU was founded on the principle of being creative and trying new things. This time of global pandemic and all the associated restrictions has caused our SIU team and our partners in the field to “try something new” as well.
Many are suffering much during this widespread global pandemic, especially those who live in poverty stricken, economically depressed communities. Questions of “Where will our next meal come from?”, “Where will our provision come from, now and for the future?” and “Will we survive?” are at the forefront of many people’s thoughts. In 1 Kings 17:7-16, God’s Word speaks to this through a story from long ago. It is just as relevant today as it was thousands of years ago. Let me share this true story from the Living Word of God.
God’s Word, shared through stories and the Oral Arts (storytelling and dialogue, drama, poetry, song and dance), continues to touch hearts and minds of oral preference learners around the world, even during this global pandemic. See how local leaders are proclaiming the Good News through story in this 90 second SIU 2020 Vision Video.
In the midst of this global pandemic we see the body of Christ living out the commands to love God and love our neighbor. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 global pandemic crisis, God continues to work through our SIU partners around the world. Many have been and still are struggling with loss of jobs and lack of food for their families and communities. Even so, they have not given up on serving God or their communities. They continue to share God’s love and Good News with their neighbors through stories and care, sharing what little resources they have to care for one another. We strongly believe that what the enemy intends for evil, our God is using for good.