Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Christ's Power and Presence

I have just returned from Burundi which is a small country in east Africa.  Burundi borders Rwanda and Uganda and is one of the three poorest countries in the world.  The average person in this war torn country makes approximately 300 dollars per year (US).  The people have experienced over 20 years of civil war and are now only in the sixth year of peace.  We worked in the capital city of Bujumbura as well as the Bujumbura Rural and Cibitoke provinces.  Many of the areas in which we worked were under travel warnings due to recent violence and although we were sometimes escorted by armed guards we never felt unsafe.  The Lord used us to start 7 new churches in these areas and to establish the fifth campus of the Busia Baptist Bible College which is based in Kenya.  One may wonder how we could feel so safe in a completely unknown land with an unknown language in a country that has recently experienced such intense violence.  How could we have such certainty in the safety of our mission?  The answer is found in Matthew 28:18-20.  Jesus commissioned His disciples to “Go and make disciples” but first He made sure that they knew that as they were going they would be doing so in His power.  In verse 18 Jesus says that He has “all authority in heaven and on earth.”  When we go to make disciples (students, followers) of Jesus Christ, whether we go next door or across the seas, we are going in the authority of the resurrected Christ and He has all authority.  Jesus also promises that as we are going to fulfill His Great Commission He “will be you always, even unto the end of the age.”  When we go to make disciples of Jesus Christ we are going with the presence of Christ.  It is the presence and the power of Christ that compel us to go.  It is the presence and power of Christ that provide us peace, faith, safety, and contentment.  No matter the environment in which we find ourselves we can be certain of the power and presence of Christ as we are obedient to His words.  

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