ETI & God’s Love In Africa Unite
A friend once asked me what it was like when I met Brother Malvory for the first time and how God moved the two of us to work together. Proverbs 20:24 says, “Man’s goings are of the LORD; how can a man then understand his own way?” It was in 2007 when I was invited to go to Africa with a church group. Although the LORD has allowed me to go on numerous trips to other countries, this was my first trip to Africa. I had been praying and seeking God’s face concerning whether I should go or not, and actually had some earthly reservations about going, but still felt He wanted me to go. I didn’t want to go on a “glorified vacation”, but wanted to work hard. My plea to the Lord was, I want to be God’s man, in God’s place, at God’s time for such a time as this, to be used to greatly impact His Kingdom! As we arrived in Africa, we were met with a nice combie (big van) to pick us up. We stayed at a very nice bed and breakfast and a hotel while we were there and it was comfortable. We helped teach some pastors at a church; it was wonderful, yet something seemed missing. Little did I know that God had entirely different plans for this trip! Proverbs 16:9 says, “A man’s heart deviseth his way: but the LORD directeth his steps.” As the group split up and went different directions, God sovereignly planned that I would go way out into the country where tanother pastoral training conference was taking place. Although it wasn’t much of training, the LORD allowed me to have one hour to share, train, and inspire these pastors to be sold out/passionate witnesses for Jesus. As I went back to my seat, I heard a voice behind me say, “My brother, I must speak with you!” As I turned around, there stood before me a man with a smile as big as he was with a glimmer in his eyes. As we began to speak, I found out that this man had been through the fire! He lived and grew up under the evil apartheid system where 20% of whites ruled the 80% of blacks. This racist political regime seemed to discriminate and permeate almost every facet of this man’s life; yet, going through the fire he did not get burned, but came out as refined gold. “What a man of God” I thought. Pastor Malvory was a man of fervent prayer and had been in the ministry for over 30 years. As David and Jonathan’s heart became knit, so our hearts immediately became knit together; we both knew it! Shortly after we met, Malvory said to me, “My brother, I believe that in this life, God brings some people into our lives for a reason; He brings some people into our lives for a season; and He brings some people into our life for a lifetime…My brother, I honestly believe He has brought us into each other’s lives for a LIFETIME!” This was evident as our hearts resonated with the same passion, the same goals, and the same love for people and the lost. We wanted our lives to make an eternal impact for the Kingdom of God! Malvory then said to me, “My brother, how about if I take you around and let you see the ‘real Africa’ and how most of the people really live?’” I then got permission from the person who was leading the trip. That afternoon, in a few short hours, little did I know, my life would be radically changed forever! Malvory took me to a little two bedroom house where an old lady watched over and took care of 25 AIDS orphan children. My heart just melted and broke as I held and hugged these little children with the sentence of death upon them. We shared the Gospel with them and numerous kids invited Christ to come into their hearts. Malvory then took me to several AIDS hospices where many of these people were in the last stages of this ravaging disease. We shared the Gospel with them and several gave their hearts to Jesus. We went to squatter camps and saw the most deplorable conditions imaginable. I remember going into a lady’s house (if you could call it that) that was built out of trashed wood, metal, or anything that would hold it together. She had a sheet for a door, no glass in the windows, a dirt floor and was laying on a cot eaten-up with AIDS and close to death. After praying for her, we left and I was changed. After musing on all that the LORD had shown me, how could my heart not be changed? I went there to minister, but I was ministered to! It was this turn of events that the LORD used to begin ETI’s great work in Africa! Since then, GOD has set a fire in our hearts that has not gone out; but on the contrary, has intensified into a raging inferno! Since the day that God set up this divine appointment for Malvory and I to meet, He has allowed us to train many pastors, do open air preaching, preach and encourage believers at a myriad of churches, preached in prisons, public and private schools to tens of thousands of kids, with principals, teachers, over-comer groups, AIDS clinics, orphanages, on the streets, etc., etc. We know and are confident that this is just the beginning! We have determined to let the size of our God determine the size of our goals (Ephesians 3:20; Psalm 118:23; 1 Corinthians 1:31). The open doors are incredible and we are asking the Lord to continuously rise up warriors to join our army with their time, talent and resources. The time is short; the needs great! Malvory and I are faithfully praying, trusting, and believing that the LORD of the harvest is going to bring us many laborers to help bring in this vast harvest! Will you join us?