By now, a lot of our friends and family know that we are actively engaged in preparing to move to Kara, Togo, West Africa long-term. But some people may not be aware of our vision, or what we want to do when we get there. So for the next few weeks, I want to cast our vision before you with the hopes of helping you understand what we’re doing and why. Our work in Togo will be three-fold:
Each week, we’ll focus on one of these aspects before painting a picture of how they’ll work together and guide our work and time abroad. So, first up:
1 Thessalonians 5:9-11 “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath, but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with Him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
Don’t we all just need a little encouragement sometimes? Don’t we all get tired and overwhelmed and feel like we aren’t making a difference at all? Don’t we all feel weary occasionally?
We’re told repeatedly in Scripture to encourage and pray for each other (see, for example, Hebrews 3:13, James 5:16, 1 Peter 3:8-9, and Philippians 1:3-6). So part of our work in Togo will be simply coming alongside local churches to encourage them. To lift their weary hands, as Aaron and Joshua did for Moses.
This may take different forms, depending on a church’s need. For example, it could include offering retreats for church leadership or spouses to just get away and be refreshed. It could mean doing some physical work on a church campus. We may plan some camps or activities for kids to come to. But it will always mean praying for and loving these believers.
This “walking alongside” also means encouraging them in Christlikeness, too, which is a little harder. It means reminding them of what the Bible says about loving our enemies, living above reproach, or caring for others around you. We also hope to assist these believers in planting churches in Togo and surrounding countries.
We are really excited to just love on Togolese believers, to help them develop healthy church cultures that point others to Christ!
Next week, we’ll talk about our role in teaching and developing Biblical literacy among believers, so be sure to check back! You can also subscribe to our blog so that you are notified via email when new posts are live. Thanks for following along!