Trusting and keeping watch

POSTED ON 2010-06-09
  by Ian Fallis

Before Kirk and Yolanda Rogers left the Landuma church for a while, Kirk thought it wise to teach from Acts 20.

For some years Kirk Rogers and Jim Sheffield have been teaching and discipling the small group of Landuma believers. Other missionaries are part of the team as well, but none yet has the language fluency to teach the Scriptures.

The Sheffield family is currently on home assignment in the USA. Then recently the time came for Kirk, his wife Yolanda, and their children to leave the Landumas for their home assignment as well.

The day they were to drive to the capital to catch their plane was a Sunday, and the believers gathered together for worship as usual. Just before bidding them farewell, Kirk taught them from Acts 20, where Paul gives his farewell to the Ephesian elders. This is verses 28-31a:

Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves. Therefore watch …”

Kirk told the believers that “we are going out, not knowing what will happen. We trust we will return to continue serving among you, and we ask you to pray for us as we are away, and to pray we return safely.”

“You need to keep watch over yourselves. You need to give heed to your own spiritual development, reading and listening to the Word every day. And you need to take care of each other, encouraging each other and building each other up in the faith.”

“‘Savage wolves’ are ready to attack you. People are wanting you to doubt your faith, to grow cold toward the truth, to return to your former religion. You will continue to be persecuted and pressured to abandon Jesus. But your own selves also may be your worst enemies. Lack of diligence in walking with God is even more dangerous than pressures from without.”

Then the church laid hands on Kirk and Yolanda, prayed for them, and “sent us out to serve God in America,” Kirk and Yolanda wrote.

Please pray that the small group of Landuma Christians grow stronger and grow in number in the Rogers’ absence.

Masalu, the first Landuma believer, and Dan Bryant, who is still learning the Landuma language, will be sharing the Sunday teaching responsibilities for the time being. Pray for them as they coach each other in message preparation and delivery!

And finally pray that Jim and Carol Sheffield and their children can return soon to Guinea so they can continue teaching and discipling the Landumas, and leading the believers in the outreach to the many who have yet to hear the Good News of Jesus and believe.

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