Last night we finished up another week of Bible college. The morning and evening chapels our young preacher boys and newer pastors get the chance to preach. Last night was Ngamba's turn. He used the story of how Elisha stuck to Elijah's side those final days before being taken away by a flaming chariot, not letting anyone persuade him to leave his side. Ngamba told all the young preacher boys that this was a perfect picture of how they needed to stick close to their mentors. He talked about how he has been "glued" to Pastor Pelegrino these past few years, asking questions, seeking help, and listening to whatever he says. Then he shared how much he's been blessed in his family and in his ministry because of it.
I'm not normally a "big picture" gal. It's just not my personality or bent. I'm all about "one step at a time" and "what needs to be done here and now." But last night as I listened to Pastor Ngamba humbly share, I looked around at the crowd of 80 students, at least half being young 18-20 year-old men, and I got a lump in my throat. If even half of these young guys have the same heart as Ngamba, what potential! What an unstoppable "army" for the Kingdom! This little group of Bible college students could EXPLODE in a handful of years! (then of course my highly practical mind started laboring over where in the world they will sleep at Bible college? They are already packed in the little "dorm" rooms as it is!) :)
Then Ngamba pointed to the back at me, "Dada (sister) Lisa was my teacher. I never thought I would be a pastor, didn't really even get why I should read my Bible. Then dada Lisa started teaching me to teach kids in Sunday school. That's where it all began." The Word started coming alive to him as he started studying it in order to teach kids! And now he is a pastor! Oh my exploding heart!
And as if that wasn't enough, the Holy Spirit reminded me what has been my prayer since last November... a double portion of fruit... from that very story of Elijah and Elisha. It's as if He was telling me, "You bet I've been hearing your prayer. See Ngamba? And he's just one example. I've had big things planned way before you started praying, oh you of little faith." I started picturing all these young guys at Bible college as pastors who were mentoring other young men, churches popping up in villages all over this region, and children in all those villages hearingthe glorious life-giving truth of the gospel!
I'm thinking triple or quadruple portion might just be on its way.
Now for a little slideshow down memory lane...
This picture was taken in 2009, I had been in Tanzania only 10 months. Ngamba is the one crouched down on the left. This is before he agreed to try teaching Sunday school. :-)
Here he is a year later (2010) helping me teach kids in a new village church plant.
And here he is last year. I got to watch him in action, an amazing teacher! He was just asked to be his church's pastor a few months before and he came back to visit his Sunday school kids.