In Ephesians chapter four the apostle Paul not only mentions some of the gifts that the Lord has given to some in his church, but he also states the reasons why this is so. His idea of a church is one, among other things, in which “the whole body joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love” (Ephesians 4:16).
Our desire this year as an eldership is to see every member of our church playing a specific role in the life and witness of the church.
In August we had four people added to our membership, three through baptism and one by profession of faith. They have since concluded the new members’ lessons as well. We trust they will each find a place of usefulness in the church.
Currently, we have asked each member to renew their commitment to the church by indicating afresh which ministry they would like to be part of. Each member has since filled in a form designed for this purpose. Currently we are in the process of therefore reorganising the ministries of our church, following the response from each member. Our desire is to see a membership that is actively participating in the ministry of their choice.
SPECIAL ACTIVITIES DURING THIS PERIOD
Ordination of Two Deacons
On 1 July we had an ordination service of two deacons: Mr John Phiri and Mr Godfrey Chimfutumba. They have already settled in their new roles, they will value your prayers.
The children’s ministry organized an outing to Munda Wanga Botanical Gardens for the children in August. It was encouraging to see a few who attend Bible Clubs also in attendance. The leaders have resolved to have another one in 2013.
Home Fellowship Groups
The beginning of August saw us introduce Home Fellowship Groups. Apart from meeting alternately for prayer meetings and Bible study, we hope to use these groups to reach out in their respective neighbourhoods. So far we have four such groups. Not all our members are attending these groups despite the meetings having been brought closer to them. We trust the attendance will improve in due course.
Church Officers Seminar
After the ordination of our two new deacons, we had a church officer’s seminar on 15 September. The seminar was led by Pastor Mbewe of Kabwata Baptist Church, and both elders and deacons felt that we should make it a point that every year we meet for such a time. The Lord willing, we should be having another one this year.
We have resumed the mentoring programme we had a few years ago. This involves all the leaders (elders and deacons) being assigned young converts and the unconverted who are regular at church, and seek to be close to them. The aim is to bring the unconverted to Christ and to try and help build up the young converts, in their faith in the Lord. So far all the leaders seem to be enthusiastic about this programme. We trust it shall yield the desired results.
Beginning in September, I have been preaching on Sunday morning on the theme “Preaching Christ from the Old Testament.” So far our efforts have concentrated on Genesis, but hope to demonstrate the same from other books of the Old Testament. We are trusting the Lord for fruit.
In November, the men of the church had a men’s evangelistic breakfast, at which a number of men from other churches were invited. Most of those who heard the gospel are not saved, and have since been followed up, and some are still being followed up. At least one of them has since attended the morning church service with us.
In December we had two consecutive Saturdays to distribute evangelistic tracts in one of our densely populated areas known as Kafue Estates. The attendance from the members was very encouraging. One young man has since become regular at church (his name is Dickson) and has begun to attend our Home Fellowship Group in this area. Please pray for his conversion, he appears to have resolved to continue coming.
I have also had some private evangelistic Bible studies with two students from a private medical college in our town. One of them (whose name is John) has since visited us at church, and has shown willingness that we continue with the studies. Our desire is that we begin to have regular studies with a number of the students at this college. They stay in different boarding houses scattered around the city.
As indicated already towards the end of the year we finished the important exercise of reorganising our ministries. All of them now have new committees in place, and have already come up with a programme of activities for the year. Our hope is that this may result, to the honour of our great God, in the growth of our church spiritually and numerically.
The drawings for the pastor’s office and the veranda as an inclusion to our existing structure have now been done, and will soon be submitted to the local authority for approval. We pray that this can been done in the first quarter of the year. We still need to meet our obligations for the repayment of the loan to the Zambia Reformed Baptist Building Trust Fund.
We are extremely grateful to the Lord, because the giving from our members improved during the last quarter of the year. If this can be sustained then we should be able to meet the above obligations.
PASTOR AND THE FAMILY
Our daughter, Kapambwe, has settled well with her studies at University, and is also participating in some Christian activities there. She attends church services at Kabwata Baptist Church.
Our son, Chabala continues to show a lot of interest in the things of God, we are still not sure about his profession. He has had problems with his eyes, and is now having to put on glasses to protect his eyes, he is said to have a form of allergy, which the medical people have said is difficult to pinpoint. We are trusting that this will not be a source of disturbance to his studies.
Gladys, my wife, is still adjusting to student life, as she pursues her degree programme in nursing. Please pray for her success. This has somewhat stretched our finances because the sponsors have not honoured their promise to pay for the government students. She and her friends are currently lodging in rented rooms in boarding houses close to the medical school.
I also need to move fast and finish my thesis. The lack of a supervisor appointed by University of Pretoria (UP) has largely been the cause of the delay so far. Cape Town Baptist Seminary have been very helpful through whom I am pursuing my studies. They offer their Master’s Programme in collaboration with UP.
We are grateful to the Lord that he has enabled us acquire another vehicle. This has certainly come in very handy in my pastoral work. We are grateful for the manner in which the Lord enabled us to have the necessary funds just at the right time! May it be used to the honour of his name.
We trust that as you make supplications for all the saints, you will remember us as well before the throne of our sovereign Master.