100% Faith All the Time
The Lord spoke to me about faith through a Divine appointment with a pastor in South Sudan. We must first ask the question, “What is real faith?” The definition of faith is having “complete” trust in someone or something.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.
South Sudan has gained independence from the north, but tragically they are in the middle of a civil war. In 2015, TTT went to the southeast area of the country. The training went well throughout the week as we felt the presence and peace of Christ. Participants in our training were an example of humility, displaying love and compassion for their community, as the body of Christ.
People desperately needed medical care. Our team taught newborn care, wound care, water-borne illness, and health and hygiene. As we trained, fighting slowly moved into the area.
Once finished, we made our way to the dirt runway where our United Nations plane would land. We were greeted by a not-so-friendly official who informed us that we didn’t have the necessary documents, we had too much luggage and that boarding the plane would be impossible. The situation began to look bleak. When we saw trucks with machine guns start to line the runway, the pastor explained it was for our protection because many try and shoot the plane when it lands. I thanked him for that reassurance.
We faced the reality that we may end up hiding in the bush or possibly have a perilous car ride back to the main airport in Juba. I asked our indigenous pastor for “Plan B,” which I thought was reasonable, considering the situation. He gave me a confused look, as if this was a ridiculous question.
He then asked, “Dr. Tom, do you have 100% faith?” I said, “Yes I believe I do have faith, but our team just wanted to know what our plan would be if we were not able to get on the plane.”
He once again questioned my faith and said, “Don’t you have 100% faith that Jesus Christ will land this plane and He will take us home? I say this because the ‘but’ in your answer shows your lack of faith.”
I then turned from him, somewhat embarrassed and walked to our team who were anxiously waiting. When the team asked about Plan B, I told them this was an absurd question and lacked 100% faith!
This was a profound question that I began to contemplate: Did I have 100% faith?
Soon after, the UN plane circled and landed; the official amazingly informed us that our documents arrived from the capital city and we were permitted to board. As we flew away, the pastor turned to me and said,” Dr. Tom you must have 100% faith, all the time. You need to work on that.”
In the following weeks to come, the war did come to this village and the pastors fled with their families to hide in the bush. Their love and compassion are undaunted as they continue to care for their people because they have 100% faith that Christ is the author of their story.
Remember, we are being watched by those who have gone before us, the heroes of the faith, described in Hebrews 11:32-40. The “world was not worthy of them” and they are watching from heaven, cheering us on to be courageous even now as we go where persecution is high. We are being watched by those we serve.
Please pray for Teach To Transform and support our work in the hardest places knowing that we have 100% faith that the Lord is already there and has written our story. We need your help, to train these courageous pastors and assist us with resources that will allow them to share the love of Christ long after we leave.
For His Glory,