Please find herewith the latest ministry news, for February 2022, from Chris Mnguni and Grace Baptist Church in Daveyton, South Africa.
He Is Wiser Than Us
It was on a Tuesday when we got the most pleasant and surprising news that we are pregnant. We were so excited and looking forward to the addition to our family. We were at six weeks, four days. The doctor explained how the heartbeat starts at six weeks, so we were able to see the little four-day-old heartbeat of our baby on the screen. However, this pregnancy came in a time where my wife is struggling with some cysts and fibroids in her ovaries and womb. The doctor told us that these have chances of causing problems for the baby. The doctor’s words didn’t last long. On the very same week my wife was experiencing some pain and bleeding. We knew this is not good news. We then went to the doctor. Our fears were confirmed: We had lost our child. We are thankful to God for the few weeks of joy and anticipation he gave us. My wife is physically fine and recovering well.
Although this was difficult news to accept, God strengthened us through the leaders of his church.
The Lord has granted us strength to pass through this. Although it is still a new thing, we are looking upon him. We do trust that God is wiser than us. And he allows his children to pass through different circumstance to fulfil his purpose. We know we may not know that purpose now. But one day we will know.
The Church that Evangelises and Does Life Together
Many people think that evangelism is a work of some gifted people. They don’t see this being what the church does when it gathers and is scattered. The apostle Paul expected unbelievers to visit the church. Hence, he told the Corinthians that they must do things in order so that unbelievers may not think that they are out of their mind. The church testimony is so important to those who visit it.
As a church, we are beginning to hear people asking for prayers that are evangelistic focused. We hear that people share the gospel in their work places and where they keep themselves fit, in places like parks, and others share the gospel with their neighbours.
The church also has been rejoicing with those who rejoice. The Lord has added two babies to our church. The ladies and men were able to organise baby showers and nappy braais to celebrate with those welcoming children into their families. These meetings gave us an opportunity to teach on the importance of raising kids God’s way while having fun fellowshipping together as a church family.
Our Lord Jesus Christ told us what a good shepherd does: He lays down his life for the flock. The good shepherd leaves the 99 righteous ones and goes looking for the one sheep that is missing. As under-shepherds, we’ve been asking ourselves, how we can shepherd God’s people better?
False teachers are out there who seek to confuse and devour the church. We have decided to strengthen our people by giving them solid food. We have decided to teach systematic theology in our midweek Bible study. We are convinced that, in order for our people to appreciate expository preaching, they must have an understanding of systematic theology. They must know how the Bible fits together. We have already started with the first class, which is bibliology. In this class we had to answer questions such as: Is the Bible a white man’s book? Can I trust my Bible? Is it the Bible enough for life and godliness?
At our Sunday services, we’ve been teaching the doctrines of grace. We have looked at the total depravity of man and unconditional election. These two topics have encouraged us to know that man is hopeless, that he cannot save himself, but that God is so powerful. He is the one who gives man faith to believe. This has encouraged us as a church not to rely on our strength in all that we do—and also to be more encouraged to preach the gospel because we know that they are people that God will call to himself.
We are hoping that, at the end of this study, our people will be able to defend what they believe and will be encourage to share the gospel with the lost.
A Church is Not a Building
It’s been three years since we began steps toward getting a building plan approved. During this process, we have learned to pray more and to discipline ourselves as we seek his grace through fasting as well. The Lord does answer our prayers in his time and his timing is always best. We are so thankful and joyful to finally get the approval of our church building plan from our municipality.
We thank our leaders as well who meet every Monday and pray for God’s grace. These men are such an encouragement to me. Even when I am discouraged, they raise my hope like the two men who were assigned to raise the hands of Moses.
We are now moving to the second stage of getting a structural plan approved. This process requires us to have the following in place: architect, structural engineer, quantity surveyor, and contractors.
So far, we have quotations from the architect and the structural engineer. One brother from Crystal Park Baptist Church decided to do a quantity survey for us. This was so important. It has helped us know how much exactly we need to finish the building. Having considered his estimation, we realised that we have money to do the first phase of the building. In the first phase, we are trusting God that we will put a foundation and the roof. We hope we will put tents on the sides in the meantime.
How to Pray for Us
- Pray for my family as we pass through this time of losing our baby: to be strong in the Lord and to continue to be an example to others.
- Pray for the leaders of our church as they seek to preach the gospel to many of our areas. Pray that God will bless our efforts.
- Pray for our last stage of application for building project to go smoothly and quickly.
- Pray and consider how to partner with us in our building projects.
How Can I Be Involved?
You can prayerfully consider how to give a once off donation for phase one building plan: structural engineering costs; architectural costs; contractor costs; tents for the sides of the building. Download a PDF detailing projected expenses below.