FCE NEWS MARCH Dear Prayer supporters The FCE staff conference which takes place bi-annually, forms an integral part of the character of our organisation. During these conferences we meet one another heart to heart, so that we can identify with the joys and sorrows of our colleagues. We create an island situation where we can seek the Lord’s face, testing whether all our activities are still within God’s vision for FCE. The conference also creates a place for the staff to share their hearts openly and honestly, and to encourage, strengthen and admonish one another in love. This is FCE’s mountain top experience, where we are prepared to go back to the valley where our faith, our commitment and our perseverance are being tested throughout the year. We went into this conference with the same enthusiasm and commitment as previous years, not knowing that each one in the organisation would be puriﬁed as through ﬁre. From the moment that the ram’s horn was blown to announce the start of the conference, and the banner with the words “Consider Your Ways” was raised, we were aware of God’s holy presence. In fear and trembling we neared God and He started reﬁning our hearts, minds and motives. As so often in the past, we realised that God is serious with the command He gave all His children. He is not impressed with our “good works”, He does not ask all kinds of sacriﬁces from us, but “The sacriﬁces of God are a broken spirit, a broken and contrite heart – these, O God, You will not despise” (Ps. 51:17). The time has come that we as believers realise that the Gospel was not given to us for our own proﬁt, comfort or selﬁsh interests. The world around us is degenerating, peoples’ lives are in chaos and the Good News we are proclaiming, is not making any difference. Why? Because we are watering down the Gospel; we are seeking the favour of people; we are misusing the Gospel for our own beneﬁt and because we love this world more than the Creator of this world. As the darkness increases in this world, so the Light should shine more brightly. To let our light shine, we need perseverance, commitment, and clinging to Him. We cannot demand rest; we will have to work doubly as hard. We do not have purses to carry with us and we cannot trust in insurance policies. We cannot look after our own interests, as God’s interests must be our priority; we cannot build our own houses, because His house lies in ruins. We honestly had to face the realities of making disciples, and we heard Jesus say: “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross, and follow Me.” (Mark 8:34) With this message I come to you, our prayer supporters, those who have been called by the Lord to take our hands, to cover our backs and to be our co-workers in extending His Kingdom. Count the cost – we really need your support! Neels
KING’S HIGHWAY ART EXHIBITION SOMERSET WEST GUEST HOUSE A Variety of art mediums from various artists will be on sale Enquiries: 0218515318 www.kingshigwhay.co.za
17 - 21 MAART 2010 (9:00 - 21:00) Come and enjoy quality art, good company, our tea garden and King’s Highway Hospitaltiy!
FCE BI-ANNUAL STAFF CONFERENCE
Consider your ways: The theme of the Conference On 4 January 2010 the FCE Conference at Hodygos, Namibia, was opened with the blowing of the ram’s horn and the raising or the banner: “Consider Your Ways.” The Lord spoke to us from His Word: “When he lifts up a banner on the mountains, you see it; And when he blows a trumpet, you hear it.” (Is. 18:3)
For two days the Lord moved through us with His Spirit, “For He is like a reﬁner’s ﬁre and like launderers’ soap. .. He will ... purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer to the Lord an offering in righteousness.” (Mal. 3:2,3) We stood before Him like the Israelites of old, guilty of murmuring and longing back to the ﬂeshpots of Egypt. We LOOKED and saw that we “Have sown much, and (we) bring in little; (we) eat, but do not have enough; drink, but are not ﬁlled with drink; clothe ourselves, but no one is warm” (Haggai 1:6). We LISTENED and we heard the Lord admonishing us to “consider our ways”, to come back with our whole heart to the calling of FCE: “Build the temple, that I may take pleasure in it and be gloriﬁed.” (Haggai 1:8) We wept, we repented and then we could get up from our knees, turn back to our Lord and say: “Here am I, send me!” The next few days we focused on the world by means of video clips – the world into which the Lord is sending us to be His witnesses. We were shocked by what we saw. Our enemy uses modern technology, the media, politics, economics, animism, socialism, humanism and even the “church” to lead people astray. The people, whom we are training, come from this world in which everything is geared towards “conforming them to this world” (Rom. 12:2). Once again we are challenged: “Consider your ways”. Is our training still purely Christ-centred? Is this training renewing peoples’ minds, so that they may be able to discern what is from God and start living according to His perfect will? Are our own lives testifying of Christ in us and is our lifestyle upright and sincere before our God, so that others can follow us? At the end of this conference we realised that we need to be alert “to discern this time” (Luke 12:59). During this conference the Lord required from us to stand still and ‘to consider our ways’. There were many shortcomings for which we received His forgiveness. It was a humiliating experience, but it brought healing. Healing which led to total surrender to continue in building God’s Kingdom. The Word of God once again came to us: “Be strong ... and work; for I am with you... My Spirit remains among you; do not fear!” (Hag. 2: 4,5) “Let the children come to Me...” Our children also participated in the conference. Guided by some of our students and volunteers, they planned every day prayerfully. The banners which they made and put up in the hall were a testimony to how God used them to minister to us from His word. It consistently conﬁrmed what the Lord gave us throughout the day. We realised that the Lord is blessing our children and preparing them to be a blessing to the nations.
THE JOSHUA CONFERENCE: 9-12 JANUARY
Straight after the staff conference we had a Joshua conference attended by all the training centre leaders and the young, upcoming leaders of FCE. The latter are young men and women who are convinced of God’s calling on their lives to reach the nations with the Gospel. A new generation who needs to be equipped to change the world for the better. We realise that it is necessary to raise up our young leaders to carry the vision of FCE into the future. Moses had a Joshua who succeeded him, but Joshua did not train anyone to take over from him. Thus the people asked for a king, who led them astray. Jesus lived with his disciples and made use of every opportunity to teach them His Father’s will and how to follow Him.
The younger men and women sat at the feet of their teachers and learnt from their wisdom. Each of the experienced leaders of FCE had the opportunity to tell their own ‘story’: how the Lord called them and their struggle to be obedient to that call; the opposition they had to face from their families, friends and sometimes even the ‘church’; the temptations they had to resist to remain faithful; the struggle they had to remain under authority; how often they wanted to pack up and turn back because the road was hard and lonely; how they could only persevere because they were committed to God; how they had to learn to live in faith and to trust God unconditionally; and then the victories they experienced every time they made the right choices. We could bless them with God’s promise to Joshua: “ As I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them.” (Joshua 1: 5,6)
FCE TRAINING In obedience to the Lord who gave us the instruction at the conference to ‘consider our ways’, we reevaluated our training to make sure that we are still on the right track with God’s plan. Recently we found that the young people doing our training have little or no knowledge of the Word. We also realised that our training equips people theoretically, but that they often do not know how to apply this knowledge in practical situations. Therefore we went back to the drawing board. We looked through God’s magnifying glass at our Vision, our Mandate and our Training. The Lord conﬁrmed to us that there is nothing wrong with the content of our training, but that we will have to adapt our strategies. Vision: We rewrote FCE’s vision from “to make disciples of Jesus Christ worldwide by building a Highway for the Lord, through Education and Training” to: Jesus Christ making disciples through us, worldwide – by building a highway of Holiness, through education and training. Mandate: We then looked at the mandate that we’ve received from the Lord, namely “to equip the Body of Christ for service”. It is important to lead people to Christ through Evangelism, but is may not end there. Our task is to equip people so that they may love the Lord with all their heart and their neighbours as themselves; that they will live Christ-centred lives in all areas of life and that they will proclaim the Gospel in season and out of season.
the chance to apply the theory of each module in practical situations. 1. Discipleship-Mission Training (Condensed) This is a 6 weeks course that will be presented annually in October in Wolseley only. 2. Discipleship-Mission Training (Foundation) This is a 3 months course that will be presented annually in January and July in Wolseley, Zambia and Malawi. 3. Discipleship-Mission Training (Advanced) This is a 9 months training that will be presented annually in January and July in Wolseley, Zambia and Malawi, of which the second phase will be continued in Zambia and Malawi. Contact our ofﬁce for more information and a detailed description of the training, or visit our website www. fce.org.za.
Training: In order to lead people to spiritual maturity and responsibility, we have decided to lengthen our training. This also provides the opportunity to train them to be skilled in Bible study and to give students
The lowest point of our conference was when the Sudanese did not turn up for the conference. This led to the decision to freeze our work in Sudan for the time being. This decision was never part of our planning and in our wildest dreams we never thought this might happen. FCE came to this decision after hours of serious discussions, debate and many prayers. We made this decision because the team leader and the ﬁve Sudanese, whom we’ve trained to continue with the work in Sudan, had decided at the last minute not to attend the staff conference. This decision was made on their own, without discussing it with the FCE leadership. The leadership only came to know about it at the conference. FCE had sponsored their journey from Goli (Sudan) to Zambia and also paid for all their visas. There was space for them in the vehicles going from Zambia to Nambia. Yet they decided not to come further than Zambia. After FCE’s decision to stop the work in Sudan temporarily, Daniel Ohide and his wife Beatrice resigned from FCE. Together with them, 9 of the 10 students whom we had sent for further training in Zambia, also packed up and went back to Sudan. We are still daily working through the disappointment and the hurt, and we have to make choices to believe that God is still in control even in this situation. We are aware of the fact that people have many questions about our drastic decision and some feel that we’ve overreacted. Unfortunately we fear the Lord more than people; we also know the power of the enemy to cause chaos where there is no unity and trust. Many of our prayer supporters put much or their time, energy and ﬁnances in this project. We would like to encourage you to keep on praying for our calling in Sudan.
training centre news After the conference we went back to Wolseley, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi and India to continue making disciples of Jesus Christ. Landa Cope wrote in this regard: “It is not enough to reach the unreached. It is not enough to plant churches amongst those who have no churches. We are to disciple individuals, and through them, disciple their communities and nations. If we do not, we are not fulﬁlling the purpose for which we were created and given eternal life.” At Masaiti we are preparing ourselves spiritually and physically for the move to Koti ni Eden. At Kalungu we started with a vegetable project to provide food on our tables, in the villages and also for the markets in the vicinity. Moses, Regina and their family are on their way to settle at our new training centre in Malawi. Chimemwe and Elizabeth will be working with them in the community and Chimemwe will also help Regina in homeschooling their two children. In our next newsletter we will give more detailed feedback on the activities at our various training centres. We also have a monthly prayer calendar on our website. Please pray according to it.
ZAMBIAN ALUMNI CELEBRATION When the Lord recently reminded us to ‘Consider Your Ways’, we soon realised that one of the ‘ways’ which had been neglected for far too long was our intention to keep in contact with the many FCE exstudents now serving throughout Zambia. So... an exciting week of visits to all alumni in the Copperbelt Province was planned and executed. Altogether thirty-one teachers and community workers were visited in various schools, orphanages and workplaces. A Celebration Weekend in the FCE King’s Highway Guesthouse was also organised for 26-28 February. What a wonderful time it was! People hugged one other after many years of being apart, marvelling at the addition of wives, husbands and children to their families and amused to see how many had grown in ‘girth’ as well as years. Stories and testimonies were shared, open discussions resulted in encouragement, misconceptions were cleared, present students met those who had paved the way during pioneering days and the Koti ni Eden School and new FCE Training College campus were visited (on the back of a truck - just to bring back memories of student years gone by!) The programme included talks on ‘Christ in You’ , ‘Christ-centredness’ and ‘Mobilising the Timber’. Alumni and staff alike were challenged by Neels’s talk on ‘The Vision Planted in You’ - a call to fulﬁl our God-given destiny. Future plans for annual celebrations and talks on how to work together were made. By the end of the weekend about sixty voices had been raised in unison to praise the Lord for His goodness, grace and exhortation from Haggai 2:4 to ‘...Be strong, all you people of the land...and work. For I am with you...’
FCE South - Africa, P.O. Box 126, Wolseley, 6830, Tel/Fax: +27 (0)23 2310 208, firstname.lastname@example.org, www.fce.org.za