How to Go Where No Missionary Has Gone
More than two centuries of foreign missionary efforts in Liberia did not reach tribes in the thick jungle of the interior, with its predators and disease, and it wasn’t easy for a native ministry either.
But 27 native missionaries in the northwestern part of the West African country recently got into a large canoe at 10 p.m. to paddle around gargantuan Lake Piso, arriving nearly three hours later at thick foliage that hid a village where the gospel had never been proclaimed. By going under cover of darkness, they avoided the watchful eye of more hostile tribes.
“We were on the lake for almost three hours, and none of the team members could swim, including myself,” the ministry director said. “But the Lord told me to go and win the lost souls. We arrived in the village at 1 a.m. by the grace of God.”
On an earlier trip, the director and another worker whose tribal customs were similar to that of the unreached people had won permission from the village chief, a Muslim, to talk about Jesus and the supreme God of the universe. Most of the villagers were animists who practiced witchcraft and hoped to keep away harm from spirits and gods by offering food, but even the Muslims among them treasured their snake bones, bird parts and potions, which they used to cast spells.
Even the Muslims among the animists treasured their snake bones, bird parts and potions, which they used to cast spells.
The people worshipped plenty of rocks, trees and rivers, and the village chief thought the visitors’ message might show how the one creator God was superior to them. He had nowhere to put so many visitors, however, so for a week they slept under a tree.
“The villagers were happy and took good care of us, though they did not have any good sleeping places to lodge us,” the director said. “However, we accepted where they placed us for the week.”
Each evening the native missionaries gathered villagers to proclaim the death and resurrection of the Christ who is one with the supreme God who sent Him.
“The power of God moved mightily in their lives,” the director said. “Souls were healed, and evil spirits were cast out in the name of the Lord Jesus. Some witchcraft followers confessed and gave their lives to the Lord. We baptized over 35 persons who totally surrendered their lives to the Lord.”
Among those who put their faith in Christ was the Muslim sister of the wife of the village chief, as well as 10 other Muslims.
“She was so happy she did not know what to do,” the director said. “We had a meeting with them to discuss building a church, and they are working very hard to see that the church is built in that part of the hinterland.”
Indigenous evangelists throughout Liberia have the cultural know-how to undertake such missions. Please consider a gift today to help them offer eternal life to peoples oppressed by dark forces.