When we first landed in Cape Town, South Africa we knew it would be a battle to stay focused on our mission with all of the beautiful mountains and beaches surrounding us. We had three weeks in paradise but were there for a bigger purpose – God’s purpose.
Our main goal was to minister to students from the University of Cape Town and connect them to Lifegroups. For the first couple of days we didn’t have much response from students and became discouraged. There was one team meeting where we each had to express our level of contentment with thumbs up, thumbs down or somewhere in between – the “thumbmometer.” All but two people had thumbs all the way down indicating our team was a feeling pretty discouraged and worn out.
But the turn around came when we realized we were trying too hard. Jesus never set aside a specific time to heal the sick and feed the hungry. He did not set aside a couple hours a day to perform miracles; He did it as He went. He made it a way of life. So our team developed an, “as we go” mentality. For some of us that meant getting coffee and talking to students at the coffee shop. For others it meant going to Crossfit classes downtown and ministering to the instructors and members of the gym.
At the end of the first week one of our teammates, Chris, saw a guy wearing a pair of shorts he liked. Chris had been looking for a pair to buy and decided to ask him where he bought them. This simple question sparked an hour and a half long conversation where Chris was able to share his own testimony and ask the guy, Nick, about his faith.
Nick told him he had been trying to rediscover his faith but had so many unanswered questions that it was hard for him to wrap his mind around God. The Christians he knew weren’t willing to answer his questions and made him feel like he was being offensive for asking them. Chris explained how God made Nick’s mind to ask questions and that God was not offended by it.
A few days later the two went hiking and were able to sort through more of Nick’s questions. Chris found most of his questions could be answered with the Gospel. Chris explained it is out of relationship with God that he follows what the Bible says to do, and as Christians we obey out of love and not obligation. As they hiked back down the mountain Chris felt God bring a verse to mind.
“Behold I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him and they with me.” Revelation 3:20
When Chris spoke it aloud, Nick responded, “Actually it’s like I’m standing inside, looking out the window excitedly waiting for Jesus to come and hoping He doesn’t forget about me.” Then he asked how to have a relationship with Jesus and decided to give his life to Christ!
We are given a perfect model for mission work when we look at Jesus’ life. It doesn’t have to be a forced and an uncomfortable task. It is as simple as following your own intuition and letting God put people in your path as you go.
While in Cape Town we were able to minister to more than a hundred college students and families. We saw two miraculous healings and four salvations! It is amazing how God can use us more when we choose to rest in Him.
By Ashley Lipscomb, Antioch Discipleship School student
Want to learn more about Antioch Capetown? Head on over to their site and check it out!