Love God, Love Your Neighbor
Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” Matthew 22:37-40 (NLT)
Our partners around the world are actively expressing the love of God by loving their neighbors. Some are finding creative ways to spread God’s great story:
“With total lockdown enforced by the government, the Maasai community has been grounded. They cannot even make the cattle grazing migration they are known for.
One of our lead storytellers initiated a storytelling relay model of storytelling, which is like the old way of letter delivery. As a result of this amazing, creative method, 16 storytelling groups have been started in 16 manyattas, villages that hold about 20-30 households, this month. Today they are involving 267 persons in studying the bible from Genesis.
Here is how it happens. A story is told in one village and a storyteller is charged to take the story to the next storyteller at the first village border post and that way it is carried on to several villages.“
Our Donors Generosity
Early on in this pandemic, God made it clear to the SIU team that we had an opportunity to generously give towards the critical needs happening among our partners and the networks they serve. We were able to combine SIU’s benevolence fund with the amazing generosity of our supporters who gave to the Partner Relief Fund and distributed grants to approximately 50 partners. The funds were extremely timely and helpful for food, supplies and other needs for partners, their leaders and their communities. We praise and thank God for our generous donors!!
God Using this Crisis for His Good
God continues to work through this time of crisis to show His love as our partners love their neighbors and share the Good News with them. Many chose to give the food and supplies to local families in their community who were hurting the most instead of keeping it for their own family. One of the partners shared with us that they now “have an open door to share the Gospel through Bible stories with these families like they have never had before”. God is drawing many people into His Kingdom as a result of this love and care given in the name of Jesus.
Not only are people being fed physically, but men are stepping up spiritually to lead their families as many churches are closed because of the lockdown. They are memorizing many new stories and telling them to their families. Many of their family members are growing in their faith and others are coming to faith through these Bible stories. Rather than ministry coming to a stop because of the virus, believers are being strengthened as they are going through the refiner’s fire. They are increasing the number of stories memorized. The pandemic and resulting shutdowns are revealing the value and necessity of having the Scriptures hidden in their hearts and retold in their homes and communities. They are seeing family and friends coming to faith like never before. Families now have many Bible stories in their hearts, that will be with them wherever they go – even into the darkest, most desperate times and regions. The light of Christ is shining brightly through our partners and their networks!
Our partners are thankful for God’s provision!!
“We are so grateful to SIU for this encouragement through special help during this difficult time. Our team is very busy in relief work among very needy families, especially daily wage earners and those who have lost their jobs. These are the people who are believers, or seekers or storytelling group listeners. We bless you and your team and those who have contributed generously.” – C. Asia Partner
“This is going to be great relief for us and our ministry leaders! We were also able to help feed 450 people for three days. May the Lord bless and multiply it at this relief for our country.” – S. Asia Partner
“We have distributed grocery items, vegetables and rice for some of the key leaders in the villages. A total of 76 families were benefited and they felt incredibly happy and grateful to God. Thank you very much sir for your kind concern about the leaders.” – S. Asia Partner
“Two days ago, we did another relief distribution with the slum area community. It is a Christian colony. There were 40 families. We helped them with food packs. Packs included rice, flour, beans, tea, soap, etc.” – W. Asia Partner
“We managed to give 15 families food items, rice, maize flour, cooking oil and a piece of soap. Thanks for bringing light and life during this difficult time of COVID 19. Thanks again and may God bless you and provide more.” – African Partner
“From the depth of my heart, I write to appreciate you (SIU Team) for this gift. Coming at this time of great difficulties, it is an answer to our prayers. May the Lord bless you guys in return. Thank you! Thank you!! Thank you!!!” – African Partner
“Thank you and the SIU team, we really express our gratitude to all of you for the COVID 19 relief gift that came right on time. Our president just announced we will be in total confinement starting next week.” – African Partner
The Need Continues
The COVID-19 global pandemic and this new season is not a surprise to our Lord, and he is clearly using it for God’s glory and growing His Kingdom. We do not know how long this global pandemic will last and we continue to receive requests from our Partners for additional food and supplies. We are committed to sending funds to help with the needs because of the pandemic as long as the relief funds are available. Please consider joining this effort by giving to our “Partner Relief Fund”
Thank you for your consideration and generosity with this effort. We are grateful for your faithful prayers for our partners and their communities.
Hopefully, this post encouraged you. Thank you for staying connected with Scriptures In Use, our partners and the Lord’s work in oral cultures around the world. Please feel free to ask or leave any questions or comments to this post. We look forward to hearing from you!
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