Pastor Steven Slater joined HBMZambia this year in Livingstone for an evangelism/disciple-making outreach. The following is his experience and reflections on the week. Enjoy.
What is it like to be sent by God to share the gospel with in a culture that is entirely different from the one from which you came?
It is intimidating. You ask yourself, how will the people in Zambia respond. Will I explain the Word well enough to be understood? Can my being here make any difference at all? But God truly went before us. He prepared hearts to receive the Word so that many souls turned to Christ for salvation. He led us to people who were already believers but needed encouragement to persevere in the faith and grow in grace. It was all God’s work who reminded me daily from Joshua 1:9, “Be strong and courageous for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
This week was also eye-opening. We weren’t the only Christians in Zecco compound. The Lord’s remnant was there, alive and well, yet struggling and wrestling against false teachings, temptations and discouragements just like Christians do everywhere. I understood this week that God’s Kingdom is global and united by His Spirit to do battle against a vicious foe who is already conquered. We are all united in the fight against satan and in the proclamation of the Good News. This week was a time of mutual encouragement. We sought to be a blessing and in return, we were wonderfully blessed as well.
And the outreach this week was also life-changing. Its impossible to return to America and not allow what happened here in Livingstone to not change my heart. All I can say to the Lord is “Thank you for this experience, but now, what do you want me to do in my life because of it?” This week I truly experienced the heart of God for the poor, the outcasts and the rejected of this world. I felt the love of Christ toward those of whom He said, “in as much as you have done it for the least of these, my brothers, you have done it for Me.”
Pastor Steven J. Slater