Monthly Archive: July 2022

10 years in missions

Dear friends and supporters,

Exactly 10 years ago, today we arrived in South Africa to follow God's call in our lives. Why we spent the first 8 hours in prison, and many other "unbelievable" experiences, we will report in the coming blog posts.

 

Here is a short review.

10 years ago we followed God's call as a family.
We gave almost everything away to fly to Africa. We took only the things that could fit in our luggage.

       

At that point, we didn't know exactly where we would end up going. But Africa was our destination. With our two daughters and our 8-week-old son.

Our home church supported us and wanted us to be well prepared for this journey. Therefore, we participated in the MDT (Mission Discipleship Training of OM) in South Africa. It was one of the best decisions we made, because this training was exactly what we needed to start this adventure called mission.

After the first few months, God extended our calling to Lesotho.

But we needed another 5 years of preparation in Pretoria before we could then move there. It felt long, but it was good to experience the time there. We met many people, got to know and appreciate many different cultures, visited mega churches and made new friends with hundreds of people....
In 2017 we moved to Fouriesburg. This was close to the border with Lesotho. But that was not our actual destination. Actually, it was in Lesotho. The only thing holding us back was not having a place to stay there yet. But finally we moved to Lesotho in 2018. There we first moved into a small round hut made of mud with a thatched roof.

Today we are still in the same village and were able to build a small house in the mountain village of Tomaketsa and later expand it. We work in many different villages in this area with a team of 3 families and many volunteers.

We were only able to make this sometimes incredible journey because we were not and are not alone. But because many of you have gone on this journey together with us in mission. In prayer, in financial support, with visits here on site and in much emotional support.

We thank God for each and every one of you! Be blessed!

 

Your Schmidt family

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When the Lord builds the house - Chief office

In one of our neighboring villages lives and works a chief (village elder), who is appointed as regional chief and stands above the other village chiefs in our area. He takes care of all matters that we city people rather know from the administrative office or mayor's office. His tasks are e.g. certifying documents after a purchase of a property, proof of residence, or certifying the purchase or sale of cattle, signing birth and death certificates... And that is only a small part of what else he has to certify. Then there is the mediation of any disputes that cannot be settled at the village level.

But since the good man can't do that in his little hut, which is understandable since he wouldn't be able to get off work otherwise, he has chosen an open space in the village, which is also used for meetings and the like, as his outdoor "office". In the summer he tries to sit in the shade of the power poles. But in rainy or much too cold and windy weather he does not work at all. Since it rained so much last year, the "office" was therefore more closed than open. This frustrated the residents a lot, as many matters, even if very urgent, could not be taken care of. But there was nothing they could do about it. Would they also rather be inside than outside in such weather.

Unfortunately, some attempts to collect the necessary money in the villages failed, because many people can not afford to give only a small amount, which would then be missing for survival. The people here often only live from hand to mouth and so only a very small amount could be collected so far.

It was clear to us that something had to be done. In order to reach the people on the ground, it's not just a matter of talking, but also of getting down to work. And that's what we did. We collected money worldwide to build an office for the chief. And thus also to support all the people here in the area.

No sooner said than done. Some talks with the local chief were held to find a suitable place for the chief and his office. It was also agreed that we as OM in Leoshto would collect the money for the building material, but that the local residents would have to help with energetic support to build the small building. In addition, the money already collected together from the residents was also used for the local mason who would supervise the project professionally.

This made it a community project and not just an aid project. The goal was not only to give away a building, but to give the people the feeling that it was also their work. This could only succeed if they all helped to build it. Thus, the "community spirit" would also be awakened and responsibility would be assumed. Finally, one treats then also things differently, if one was involved in it.

At the end of 2021 we started with the foundation, which was mainly dug by the women with pickaxe and shovel. It was not so easy to carry out all the construction work on time, because the many rains last year often made it difficult for us to continue building.

Since there was not enough money from the collection to hire a worker for the roof, the OM team agreed to do the work and put the finished roof on the office in 1.5 days.

Then, at the end of March, the construction was completed. The chief is now in his own little office and can help people even in wind and weather. There is also a large canopy in front of it for those waiting, so that they don't have to stand in the rain either.

God is so good. He opens doors and hearts in his time to the Basotho. We just have to realize when and where and then do what he says. There is so much blessing in that.

"Unless the Lord builds the house, everyone who builds it labors in vain. Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman watches in vain" Psalm 127:1

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"Oh, I didn't know that!"

Dear friends,
here again is a short report about what is close to our hearts. That people here in Lesotho can get to know Jesus.

Discipleship Groups - Disciple Maker Movement

The vision of the OM team in Lesotho is "to see a discipleship group in every village in Lesotho". All the ministries and efforts of the team are directed towards this goal.
One of the answers we often hear is: "Oh, I didn't know that!".

"I didn't know that I can pray directly to God, talk to Him. I don't have to pay a priest, pastor or prophet to pray for me? "

or

"I didn't know God didn't want ancestral rituals, occult practices or good luck charms."

 

And it always hurt to realise that people actually want to follow Jesus but just don't know how, are led astray by false pastors or are trapped in traditional beliefs.

Dr Hendrik J. Vorster's discipleship course succeeded in picking people up where they were, namely at the beginning of their faith in Jesus Christ. The first step (Step ONE workbook) Read more

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