Faith That Overcomes a Fetish
In a country of great spiritual darkness, Joseph believes, “You can’t do it all, but you can do some.” He knows faith that overcomes darkness is found in Jesus. In 2012 he and his wife Francisca bought a plot of land in the bush to grow food and give to the needy. When he visited the land in 2021, he saw a woman his cutting trees for firewood. Across the dirt road from his land, a family had built two round mud huts with thatched grass roofs. The children had no clothing, the husband was gone, and they were struggling to survive in their huts miles from the river. “My heart turned to them,” Joseph said. He told the woman to use the land to provide for her family.
Showing Love & Sharing the Gospel
A week later, Joseph returned, and the husband had returned. The man’s name was Kodzo, meaning “a boy born on Monday.” Joseph asked the man if he would help farm the land. He agreed, going to work growing maize and yams.
Back home in Lomé, Joseph shared about Kodzo’s family. Three churches donated clothing for the family and villagers. Joseph returned to ask the chief for permission to call the people together for the gift of clothing, wanting to meet people’s needs and reach them with the gospel.
As Joseph begin to show love to the village, he shared the gospel with Kodzo. Until then, Kodzo trusted in evil spirits and practiced voodoo. Like most people in the bush across Togo, he had a fetish buried in the center of his home plot. With the little money he had, he purchased a fetish from the witch doctor, who filled a small pot with items he claimed would protect the family. Placing his confidence in the fetish, Kodzo buried his idol in the center of his family‘s world.
Building Faith that Overcomes Fear
Kodzo kept learning more about Joseph’s Jesus. With his partners in the United States, Joseph developed a well and a small church building across the road from Kodzo’s house. As cinderblocks and strips of bamboo were coming together, God was building Kodzo’s faith. The man born on Monday decided to believe in Jesus, eager to learn more from Pastor Joseph and Pastor Bedu who came to teach them.
Along with the well and the church building, North American partners also provided a motorbike with transport space. Kodzo learned to use the motorbike to go four miles to the main village to pick up other people and bring them to hear about Jesus. People came and heard about the true God who loves them. But the fetish lay buried beneath the center of Kodzo’s camp. He knew he had to get rid of the witch doctor‘s fetish, to show his family his new faith that overcomes his fears.
Showing Faith that Overcomes Fear
After church one Sunday morning, Kodzo led the way across the road from the small church building to the clearing in the bush where his two huts sit facing each other. All the village children, the chief, the chief’s assistant, and the wives stood encircled around the center of the camp. Kodzo’s wife stood by watching with their four children. Joseph was there with Pastor Bedu and another Togolese pastor, Pastor Caleb. Everyone watched and waited to see what Kodzo would do.
Kodzo took a spade and began to chop away at the hard clay ground. At first, he only uncovered clumps of earth. But then, his spade scraped against something like pottery. Carefully, he continued to dig, pulling out a small round pot — he exposed the fetish he once paid the witch doctor to make.
Kodzo handed the pot to Joseph, who pulled off the lid and looked inside. All eyes watched as Joseph pulled out the contents, explaining to the people, “Kodzo has a new life in Christ. This fetish pot means nothing to him now.” Everyone watched and waited to see what the fetish pot would do.
Victory Over a Fetish
Kodzo stepped to the center, took the pot in his hands, and raised it in the air. Every eye was on the fetish pot. Stretching high on his toes, Kodzo smashed the pot on the hard earth in front of him. The useless contents lay lifeless on the ground in broken pieces.
Faith. Freedom. No fear.
Everyone looked at the motionless fetish pieces on the ground. Joseph, Pastor Bedu, and Pastor Caleb gathered pieces of dry grass and twisg. They made a heap on the ground with the pieces that once filled the pot, setting them on fire.
The Power of Witnessing Faith
Everyone witnessed the victory of faith in Jesus over the lifeless fetish. Pastor Bedu’s wife and Joseph’s wife Francisca began to sing in their tribal language Ewe, “I have decided to follow Jesus.” Everyone heard the song, a testimony of the man born on Monday and born again to new life in Jesus.
In the crowd of children and wives, the chief watched as the powerless fetish turned to ash. That afternoon, the chief invited Pastor Bedu and Pastor Caleb to follow the long trail to the village to teach everyone what the Bible says for them. But just before the Togolese pastors followed the long trail, a tropical rain began and poured down on the villagers in the mud huts. Unable to gather outside, the Bible teaching and the fetishes had to wait.
A Chance for Another Faith Victory
Pastor Joseph and his team of Togolese church planters want to build a cinderblock and bamboo church in the chief’s village. They want to drill a well, so people won’t have to walk many miles balancing heavy containers on their heads. They'll come for life-giving water, and they'll hear the Gospel. Would you help Pastor Joseph? There are fetishes waiting to be uncovered in the chief's village. There is new life to be found through faith in Jesus.
You can make a difference with a gift for the new church and well.