Last week I shared with a group of women about salvation and Jesus. These ladies are lifelong Catholics. They also happen to be inmates in the prison. You see, the normal group of women (those who know their own hopelessness and long to come to the Lord, and those who have surrendered their lives to Him) were all out working in the field. Those few who remained behind were so secure in religion without transformation that they couldn’t and wouldn’t hear the Good News that Jesus came to set them free.Read More
When you got saved, I bet it was unexpected. I bet you were going about your life, doing what you do, and Jesus stepped into your world, revealed His love and power, and changed the whole course of your life.Read More
This week the freedom bells rang in ears and hearts in America, as Independence Day was celebrated. Here in Uganda, it was just another Tuesday. But it caused me to pause and thank God for everything He has blessed me with, including the heritage of freedom that was afforded to me simply because of my citizenship.Read More
I once knew a carpenter named Geoffrey. He was a good guy. He struggled with alcohol, though. He had a wife and several children. They were from South Sudan but had come down to make a life for themselves in Kitgum. He helped me whenever we needed something built. We developed a relationship and so he wouldn’t cheat me like some others did because of my skin color and speech. We shared with Geoffrey about the Lord many times, but he was hesitant. One day he did come to say he wanted to follow Jesus, and we were delighted. Shortly after that we had a team come.Read More
As we continue this topic of short-term missions, I hope you don’t think I’m being too harsh. If you didn’t before, you may when you read the next point. Please know that it’s all out of love. Please read with an open heart and understand that we are all still learning, growing, and being conformed more into the image of Christ. If you missed the last two posts, please check them out, as this is a continuation of the others.Read More
Last week we began this topic by looking at the first thing any of us must do before getting into ministry or mission work- check our hearts. If you didn’t read it, I would encourage you to check it out here: http://www.ericambasan.com/blog/short-term-mission-check-your-heart .
This week we move on to the next two points- learn from the mistakes and successes of others who have gone before. The operative word here is learn. It takes humility to recognize that you don’t know everything.Read More
So you want to go on a short-term missions trip. That’s awesome!
As someone who has lived on the field for quite a few years now, I appreciate short-term trips because that is how it all began for me. I see the value of them. But I also see the destruction that short term mission’s trips can bring. Really, you could be a great blessing where you go; or you can undo years of hard work. Wanna know how? Read on!Read More
As they say, laughter is good medicine.
Early in my missionary journey, I realized how overwhelming grief can be. My heart was broken on so many levels so often. Living in a land torn apart by war, poverty, HIV, and innocent orphans suffering, it was hard not to despair. It seemed the only two options were to develop a hard heart or to fall to pieces.
Thankfully, God showed me that there was a third option. I realized that I needed to find the joy in the darkness, to look for the glimmers of hope and signs of God’s faithfulness and restoration. And furthermore, I needed to laugh.Read More
Things will frustrate and confuse us; and in those times we need to remember WHY we do it. We already discussed two weeks ago that we do it in order to win some to salvation, but I’d like to take it a little bit deeper.Read More
Jesus called men and women from every social stratum - from the slums to the palaces - to come and follow Him. He ate with them, dwelled with them, and loved them. He still does this, and He desires to do that through our lives.Read More
Sometimes things are “lost in translation”, as they say.
I have learned this over the years, though I feel as if I have not scratched the surface of truly grasping the culture here in Northern Uganda.
For example, within the first few days of my arrival in Northern Uganda, the man whom I was working with told me that we should go visit his brother who needed encouragement. He said the brother lived very close and we could easily walk there.Read More
Be steadfast and positive. It’s easy to think about the negative, but instead, think about the good things - what is noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable and praiseworthy. Don’t ignore the negative and the difficulties, but don’t allow them to consume you. Take control over your thoughts and be thankful, encouraged in the good, and meditate on all the work that God has done in your life and the lives of your loved ones thus far.Read More
As a missionary, “rest” can sound like a foreign concept or a dirty word. This is true not only of missionaries, but all “doers”.
You know the type, the people who see a need and step up to take care of it. The Martha’s of this world. We get so frustrated sometimes, don’t we? We even take it out on the Mary’s, and wonder why things are so unbalanced, why we do all the work while the others sit around.Read More
I have trained a good number of women in literacy, in-depth Bible teaching, and income generation. Out of all those women, there are two who are currently using their training. Only two. Others still love God but it seems (at least right now) as if the training was wasted on them. All the time, effort, energy and resources poured into them, for what? Why even do it at all?Read More
There are many times in ministry when the minister feels tired, like they have been running in circles and wasting their energy. There are times of fruitless effort and frustration. I mean, so I hear. Not that I can identify with that, but I’ve heard of it happening to others (smirk).Read More
How many of you missionaries have gone on a speaking circuit, on a furlough, and felt rested? My guess is that, if you’re anything like me, rest is not the first word to come to your mind.
How many of you supporters have wondered what your missionaries spend their time doing while in the States?
Please indulge me for a few minutes. I would like to share a little on what it is like for a missionary on furlough, especially when they have the responsibility of sharing about the work that God is doing.Read More
Have you ever been directed by God to an unexpected place to do an incredible thing? If you have spent any time with the Lord, you have no doubt experienced this.
One of the most amazing days in my life was in 2009. It came with God orchestrating events that we never could have anticipated. We got a call that a young believer who walked to our weekly Bible study in one of the camps had passed away. John (a pastor from Sudan) and myself decided to visit his widow and children to show our support. We entered a new village which was far off the beaten path and that was thought to be unsafe. The first time to a remote village to mourn, turned into a day of healing physically and spiritually. Half of a community came to the Lord. It started with one hungry man name Raymond who was searching and ready to hear the Gospel. Eight years later, the believers still meet weekly and we go to encourage them and share with them from the Word of God. It all started with a move of the Spirit on that day that He led us to Lukwor North Village for purposes that we could not see.Read More
In Northern Uganda (and the US and the world over), there are people who want to be in ministry because they think it is an opportunity to make money and to connect with foreigners. It grieves my heart to see. There are ample pastors and ministers who are not shepherds, but wolves in sheep’s clothing. They are out for their own gain. You see them rising through the ranks of the local churches, praising the name of Jesus with their lips but living a lie. They can deceive the people around them for a time and a season, but eventually their sin is exposed and their ministries discredited. In the meantime, many of them hold large crusades with loud PA systems and big shows of what they claim is the anointing of the Holy Spirit. They profess to be moving in the Spirit, and call upon Him to do miracles, but they are living in the flesh and for themselves. They cannot have it both ways. Neither can we. Dim the lights, disconnect the speakers, and what you’re left with is a show and nothing more.Read More
My desire is to see God move Heaven and Earth, to touch the lives of people where He has called me to minister. I want Him to change the world! But being on the field and trying to be a good steward of time and resources, I create a schedule. I evaluate, re-evaluate, examine and plan. These things are necessary, for disorder cannot accomplish anything good. Planning, organizing, and strategizing are God-given things, just as long as we don’t plan Him right out of the schedule.Read More
I sat in my living room alone. As a young child, I loved cartoons. I was about to turn on the television, but something stopped me. I felt a pull to read the Bible that sat on the coffee table. What I read spoke to me so clearly that God was real, He loved me, and I could surrender my life to Him. There were many things that I didn’t understand, but that didn’t matter then. What I did know was that I wanted to give my life to Jesus. After that, I felt a similar pull and desire within my heart to be a missionary.Read More