It all happened one evening as the apple blossoms were beginning to flower and the cicadas, to hum. I (Mommy Emily) sat, wondering how to make this Harvestime theological training accessible to pastors in the remotest of villages who had no printers, who sometimes can’t even read. It’s Biblically sound, excellent training that, if learned, would dispel false doctrines and equip these pastors and their congregants to spread the gospel.
So I decided, out of the blue (yet completely orchestrated by the Holy Spirit), to record it. I couldn’t afford to pay anyone to do it, so I just did it. On my cell phone. Uploading the files through Whatsapp and going one by one, through the courses, in my halting voice, pausing the recording when a child called from his or her bed, or when my husband had a question; begging the barking dogs and other outside sounds to still, and then finally, reaching out to others around me (including our own Lulu board) to help me to finish the recording. And God brought professionals to us as well, amidst other wonderful volunteers, and in just over three months, all 21 courses, as well as examinations and answer keys, were recorded and ready to be added to USBs and to audio recorders.
And then the Lord gave us another beautiful surprise — when we shared with the Harvestime founders that we’d created the audio recordings, and shared them freely to be used around the world through Harvestime, they blessed US by saying that they would like to authorize us to give out diplomas in partnership with them. So now, not only had God given us a way to provide the training to hundreds of remote-village pastors, but to also CERTIFY these pastors with a diploma. This is huge. In Rwanda, alone, 6,000 churches have been shut down because they didn’t possess any record of formal training. Since learning that fact, and since witnessing government authorities coming into the slum churches where we partner and threatening to shut them down if they can’t produce legitimate papers,
we’ve become convicted that one of the greatest needs currently in developing countries is to equip sincere, heartfelt pastors who are too poor or too remote for theological schools, with Biblical education.
And we praise God for how pastors are already being raised up through this curriculum. In Sierra Leone and Liberia, Lulu’s national directors have decided to host a conference this month in which they will gather up to 500 pastors and train them. In South Sudan — both in Nimule, and Adjumani — Lulu’s directors have been gathering weekly with other men and women to train them. In Uganda, funds have been provided for 98 audio recorders to be handed out in the remotest of villages so pastors (whose churches are still shut down due to COVID) can be trained and encouraged, and share the Word with their congregations and communities.
The fields are white for the harvest (John 4:35). May we raise our eyes and behold all that our Father longs to do — all the souls that He longs to save — and may we be quick to say, with Isaiah, “Yes, Lord, send me.”