Chronicles from Africa
Robert & Esther Marsh – May- September 2013
South Africa & Democratic Republic of Congo – Church planting and radio ministry & Bible School
“Stand alone and be ye sep’rate his name to sanctify, Unashamed to spread the gospel and hold His standard high. Without the camp now meet Him thy Lord’s reproach to bear. Stand alone and in the Spirit be watchful unto prayer.”
(Verse from “Stand Alone” We’re Singing by the wilds).
On the 28th of August 2013, we had to be reminded by Cherith that it was our wedding anniversary. We are both so thankful for the Lord’s working in our lives, the way he brought us together and the way we have been able to serve him together these last 20 years, WITH YOUR FAITHFUL SUPPORT. THANK YOU.
South Africa: Other events of the past months:
3rd – 5th May – We joined in a “Men’s Retreat” with other churches we fellowship with. Our theme was “Show thyself a man” – in CONDUCT, COMBAT, CONVICTION, and CHARACTER. It was refreshing and good to challenge one another in our responsibilities as godly men. I preached on the Life of Joseph.
24th – 31st May – Bible Conference- “Alive in Christ.” with Brother Chris Hustler from Australia, Praise the Lord for his ministry to us and the challenge he left us from God’s word.
24th – 28th June – “Know your Bible Club” (5 day VBS) we had the opportunity to reach out to over 280 children with the gospel. It is also a blessing to see our teens taking part in teaching the Bible lessons and the missionary story.
8th – 12th July -Youth Explosion (5 day evening Youth Outreach) Again this year we saw our young adults taking part in leadership and a good turn-out of youth.
19th July to the 2nd August, Congo visit: Jeremy (10yrs.) and I made a trip to Lubumbashi, and Kolwezi, DRC. I made the trip as part of survey, preaching and seminar opportunity. Lubumbashi and Kolwezi brought back many memories for Esther and I of our very first trip (November 1993), as newly- weds , driving up to Congo from South Africa in our Unimog – Mercedes truck. We spent one week in a tent while trying to get our trailer through customs. As it was, Esther had a miscarriage while we “camped out” in the tent, alone and in a foreign land! The Lord graciously took care of her. Two days later we were on the road again, and made it just past Kolwezi. We were getting our camp set up when a group of men came and asked us to come into the village where they could “see” us as the people were afraid that we would come and steal their hearts at night. Congolese people can be very superstitious. I was able to share the gospel with them (group of men) and told them we were missionaries and handed out tracts and New Testaments. They left, but I’m sure that that night we had self-appointed night sentries to keep an eye on these strangers out in the middle of the jungles. The next morning we stopped in the village and handed out tracts and French New Testaments. These towns are in great need of the TRUTH of the word of God. There are churches all over, but the truth is hid by false teaching, private interpretation of word of God and traditions of men. There is a great need to get the churches back into the word of God. Pray with us as to “how” we can assist in the future with training in this part of the DRC.
10th August 2013, One of our young men got married. They asked me to conduct the wedding. We travelled 4 hours to the province of Limpopo, along with a group of our youth and some of our church folk. I was asked to conduct the wedding for them at the bride’s home church. The bride’s father and mother are missionaries supported by our church. Do continue to pray for us as we “parent” our young adults in the important choices of marriage partners and relationships. We have a few “courting couples” who have asked us to “look over their shoulders” and help to give good advice. Thank the Lord for their willingness to see the importance of this!
12th – 15th September – Missions conference at CBC. We are excited that even as a small church we are able to support 9 missionaries ministering in throughout South Africa (RSA), and one missionary in Zimbabwe we have just taken on, he was saved here in RSA, and now has go back to his own people in Zimbabwe . This year we had quite a few of our missionaries at the conference, and we were able to “send” a few of our own young men to preach in their churches, so that the missionaries could be with us through Sunday. It was a blessing to be challenged by at least 5 of our missionary men. We also gave opportunity for four of our Young people in ministry to put a presentation together and share the Lords leading in their lives with us, their aims and goals for the future. Pray for Kagisho Morgan, Romeo Maloka, Tobile Gama and Cindy Neilson as they set out to serve the Lord.
14th September 2013 – Engagement: Family news, Winnie was engaged on the 14th September to Edison Bond, a young man that we have come to enjoy and appreciate. They have been courting over the last year and they celebrated their engagement one year later during our mission’s conference. He serves along with his family who are church planting about two hours from us. Needless to say all the ladies in the family are talking “wedding”. No date as yet, but it could be sometime March 2014. We are so thankful and ask for your continued prayers for them, as they have been a godly example of “How” a young couple should/ and can go about these things in a godly way. The world has warped God’s plan and so many have fallen into sin along the way. We are excited for them and pray that the young ones looking on will be encouraged to follow the godly example they have shown.
Lastly I covet your prayers that the Lord will help me as I preach and lead the sheep of this flock. That His word will have full sway in my life and that I will experience his sustaining power and wisdom. We have been studying the book of Ezekiel and I have come away with the strong desire to “see the glory of the Lord…” that I fall on my face, and be lifted up by His spirit to say “…Thus sayeth the Lord…”!
Thank you for you prayer and support,
The Marsh Family