Dear praying partners,
We warmly greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ who has saved us from the almighty wrath of God and called us to his service. Unworthy, and undeserving slaves of Christ we are, David asks: “What is man that you remember him?” (Psalm 8:4). Why is God concerned about us, that he would be so merciful and kind so as to bring us to glory? Why was our salvation authored through suffering (Hebrews 2:6–10)?
These are the questions the gospel causes us to ask ourselves. The gospel causes us to forever be in awe of the amazing grace that we not once received, but the amazing grace that we continually receive each second from God. We indeed are the nothings, the despised, and the foolish of this world; yet God, when he chose those whom he would set his heart on and use to advance his gospel, chose us the least of all (1 Corinthians 1:26–31).
His ways are not ours, yet he is all wise and we always marvel at the work he does (Isaiah 55:8–9). Sometimes we doubt him, we lack faith, and we are downcast, not realising and being thankful enough that God is at work. This update is about how God always provides in amazing ways and how he always works wisely. As a church, we have had our doubts and anxieties. Perhaps we still do, but God is at work and he provides resources to advance the gospel through us.
The Kukuni Family: Rest and Resources Provided
On 13 June, I went on the much needed sabbatical, which ended this week. If you had asked me back in June what I needed to make the sabbatical work, I would not have known. I am amazed that I never had to figure that out because the Lord provided just the right people and the right resources I and my family needed for the sabbatical to work. I feel refreshed and rested, and all this was done by God.
A lot of gratitude goes out to our church family, the Free State Bible Church (FSBC). Our beloved FSBC supported us from day one of my sabbatical. They knew and saw, without me having to ask, that I needed the rest to better serve Christ, my family, and them. I feel honoured and the support our church family gave us showed that they take the Scriptures seriously, love me as their shepherd, and care about my wellbeing (1 Thessalonians 5:12–13; 1 Timothy 5:17). Not a single member grumbled or thought I did not need the rest. We saw and felt some amazing love from our beloved church.
Similarly, I want to thank HeartCry and friends who provided the resources we needed. Again, without asking, the Lord put it in his people’s hearts what our needs were, and they were met. What an amazing partnership in the gospel we have! What amazing friends, brothers and sisters in the Lord we have! People in our lives prayed for us and provided for us, and all this was done by God.
The Kukuni Family: Devotions
We thank the Lord that our devotional life is healthy. We particularly want to thank the Lord for putting it in Keitu’s heart to equip herself more in ministry focused on women. There is a great lack and need for women strengthening resources. While searching, the Lord provided a series by HeartCry on biblical womanhood, which is exactly what Keitu needs at the moment.
Please pray for the Lord to use these lessons to strengthen Keitu’s walk and enrich her understanding of biblical womanhood. In addition, please pray for her as she plans to use the resources to equip and disciple the young women that God has sent to our church. There are many young adult women who are adherents at FSBC and need discipling. Please pray for the older women in the church, the few that we have, to form a strong bond with the young ladies and be of encouragement to them and disciple them well in the Lord. We thank the Lord that the women we have as members are devoted to the teachings of the Bible on womanhood, so we are hopeful that they will commit faithful teachings to the younger women.
Our children have also been devoting themselves to the Lord in encouraging ways. We are thankful to the Lord that our children are receptive to the teachings of the gospel. I thank the Lord, too, that he is enriching me. I have been devoting a lot of time to studying “cross referencing” so that I may be responsible in my use of Scripture to interpret Scripture. In addition, I have been strengthening my ability to do inductive Bible studying. It has been good for my soul, so I pray that the church will benefit a lot from the Lord’s work through me.
FSBC: Provision for Ministry Supporters
During my sabbatical, the Lord sent us preachers who prepared the words we needed to hear from God. Since the last update, Kevin, an intern at Florida Baptist Church and student at Christ Seminary, shared with us how the Lord wants FSBC to walk the Christian life in the wisdom of the Spirit from Ephesians 5:15–21.
Frank practiced as a registered clinical psychologist. The conversations we had on psychology and biblical counselling were very helpful to me. He gave me insights to use in counselling the hard cases. It has been a prayer of mine, and of others in the church, that the Lord would enable us to counsel the hard cases. Frank is currently studying towards a Masters in Biblical Counselling, so we now have a friend we can draw wisdom from to deal with the hard cases.
FSBC: Provision for Men
There was once a time in the life of our church, while we were still called Hope Bible Church, when we had many men in the church. It was evident that the Lord had blessed our church with faithful, committed men. I remember that, whenever churches asked us to pray for men, we always felt we did not have that need. Being a small church of ±30 members, with about seven men able to preach, is rare. You can imagine that we felt we had enough supply from the Lord.
Well, the Lord took those men away and one day we ended up with just three able to lead and two able to preach men. We prayed to the Lord for men and the Lord has provided once again. We can again say, there are about eight men that the Lord is using in various ministry activities in the church and for that we are grateful.
They need discipling and growth, so please pray that the Lord would use Frank, Tebogo, and I, who are already qualified and have been used by the Lord, to take the things we have learned and entrust them to these faithful men who will be able to teach others also (2 Timothy 2:2). We do not want to take it for granted that the Lord has provided, but we are reminded that once again this is only by his grace.
There is nothing we have done and nothing special about us, so the provision of these human resources is the Lord’s work. The Lord uses and blesses us, unworthy and sinful as we are.
Conclusion and Prayer Points
- Thank God for his amazing work and for using feeble, sinful people like us to serve Him. Thank him for this wonderful privilege we have.
- Thank the Lord for the sabbatical and for his provision during this time. Pray, as I preach my first sermon this coming Sunday (21 August 2022) from 1 Corinthians 2:1–5, that it will be a helpful sermon. I will also do a devotional for our prayer meeting from Proverbs 18:9. Please pray for the Lord’s help.
- Thank God for the provision of young women and resources on womanhood. Pray that the older women in the faith will apply their Titus 2:3 mandate faithfully and helpfully.
- Thank God for providing preachers who helped Tebogo carry the preaching load while I was on sabbatical. Pray that we will apply the teachings we heard.
- Thank God for providing men. Pray for us to disciple them well. Pray that they will become masculine and live out God’s calling to men.
- Pray that we will not lack faith. Currently, our church is struggling financially, but pray that we will not be anxious because the Lord provides. Pray that we will be rightly concerned and consider the matter and be wise about dealing with this serious situation, but pray that we will not commit the sin of anxiety and other sins that come with a lack of faith in God.
Grace and peace to you,
Tsholo, Keitu, Warona, Tikvah, and FSBC Family