Changed Plans and Changed Lives
What was on your 2020 calendar that you didn't get to do?
For Togolese Pastor Joseph Akakpo, he had scheduled to visit each of the local churches in his region in Togo, to strengthen them in the Lord through evangelism, preaching, and teaching. Like everyone else's, Pastor Joseph's 2020 plans changed, but by the grace of God, he still made it to 13 churches in the mountains and valleys of Togo.
On Pastor Joseph's tour, visiting the valley churches is a great challenge because of the terrain and always has to be done before the rainy season. Actually, Pastor Joseph does not have a vehicle up for this task, so he always borrows a land cruiser from a colleague.
He also learned on his tour that many of the churches local to him still need a decent place to worship and study the Word of God that will survive the rainy season year after year. Many have begun the task, but don't have resources to finish.
For the Togolese, both buying a land cruiser and building church buildings are enormous needs that Pastor Joseph cannot himself meet. But, because Pastor Joseph and his ministry are Live Global national partners, these needs could be met by North American partners who share Pastor Joseph's vision for Togo and give generously to his ministry, maybe even out of their extra stimulus money!
Pastor Joseph himself relies on gifts and donations from other believers (both local and far away) in order to do his traveling teaching ministry among churches. For these late 2020 trips, Pastor Joseph saw God's provision from locals.
Pastor Joseph said, "The Lord has blessed us with many donations like roosters, yams, bush animals, fruits and more for our consumption. They do not have the cash, but they have food crops and are so generous to us."
Pastor Joseph draws a crowd whenever he's preaching, and we are so thankful that more than 40 people made confessions of faith and commitments to the Lord throughout his journey.
On one Sunday in December, a woman was crying during Pastor Joseph's preaching and she even left the auditorium before the last hymn. Pastor Joseph asked the local pastor of that church and he shared that the woman had been experiencing negative consequences due to bad choices. But during that sermon, the Holy Spirit had convicted her of her sins for repentance. And now this local pastor will continue to work with her through God's Word.
Pastor Joseph said, "Yes the crop is ripe on the field, we just go to harvest!"