by Brad Phillips
I remember reading about some early missionaries to Africa and how they experienced “turf wars” with other missionaries and organizations. At the time, I wondered why there was so much tension between people who were trying to do God’s work in an area that had more than enough work for everybody. Then, I started working in Africa myself, and I found that this “turf warfare” was still alive and well in the 21st Century.
In contrast, I am grateful for the many partnerships PPF has developed over the years with several individuals and organizations who share similar goals and purposes – yet without pride and ego thrown into the mix. God has gifted each one of us differently, and sometimes good fences make good neighbors. But building a fence and giving offense are two different things.
In my recent trip to Kenya, I spent some time with Stephan and Iris Matusik. Stephan and Iris are missionaries in Southern Sudan through a German organization called Diguna. I’ve known Stephan since 1998 and have always been impressed with everything he has been able to accomplish living in a very difficult area of the world.
Steve and Iris have 5 young children and have experienced suffering alongside the people they seek to minister to in Sudan. When I was recently with Stephan, he was in Nairobi with his family receiving treatment for a respiratory illness. This disease has all but been eradicated in the West, yet the Matusiks deal with it all the time in Southern Sudan, along with malaria and other dangerous diseases. I count it a privilege to work among such courageous people and partner with them whenever I can.
Persecution Project Foundation, and every other mission organization working in Africa, is not the solution, and not even part of the solution. The Solution is Christ. We are just the messengers. It’s not all about us. As Believers, we are part of a big family. We have the same Father. And our goal should be to serve and please Him. We don’t serve our Father by being protective of our “turf” because it all belongs to Him anyway.
Lord, take away our pride and make us proud to be a part of Your family and desire to work together to bring glory to You, our Heavenly Father. Amen.