by Johan Leach
The question is asked; “What has God taught you this year?
The Answer; Love….again and again Love. (READ Luke 6:27-36)
When studying Christ’s walk on the earth, His teachings, His example, and then in obedience follow and imitate Him, it is not surprising then that folk both ‘Christian’ and atheist will at times insult you, bring false accusations against you and yes, even persecute you. For they did the same to Our Master and we are no greater than Him.
Thus it is encouraging and comforting to know that; "Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. (Matt. 5:11)
Mark 10:45. “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
As a missionary, an ambassador for Christ Jesus, we are not here to be served but rather to take the Good News of Salvation through Jesus to the lost and to serve. This my wife and I have done for many years and specifically here in Chavuma, Zambia these past few years.
Lesley Leach in their kitchen overlooking the Zambezi River, which Johan crosses to reach the isolated villages with the gospel.
Johan shares the gospel with the villagers across the Zambezi.
Johan disciples men of remote Zambian villages.
The Persecution We Faced This Year
This year has been no different to the years gone by since being Born Again.
I was accused of being a spy, my work permit removed while being ‘investigated’, only to be returned a few days later and told by the authorities that there are individuals who are jealous of the work we are doing amongst the Luvale peoples and want to see us out of the area.
I have been physically assaulted and told that; “we do not want you white missionaries here and to get back to where we come from.”
While this may seem harsh it is nothing compared to what our Lord Jesus went through.Knowing this, Lesley (my wife) and I, on our knees asked God to intervene and show himself strong.
You see my flesh wanted to retaliate, lift up my fists and beat the living daylights out of my accusers, sue them! Ridicule and crush them!! But Christ Jesus!! “….turn the other cheek….love and feed your enemies…”
In other words walk in His Spirit and not that of the flesh. So we did this in anticipation of witnessing God showing Himself strong.
We Never Expected What Happened Next
It was barely a week later when the District Commissioner, a government appointee in the region called me in (I took two witnesses with me), to tell me that the President’s Office in Lusaka had contacted him and told him that they had heard about our troubles, and he was to tell me that I have the approval and backing of the President’s Office to fulfil the mandate and calling God has for me in that region.
Soon after that I was called in by a representative of the village elders, who carry equal if not more ‘weight’ in the region. On behalf of these elders he apologised for the behaviour of ‘these immature youngsters’ as he called them.
I was told that we had the full support of the elders and villagers to continue to pursue our calling! All Praise to our King!!
So, we LOVE and SERVE and continue to point to ‘The Way’.
In closing, may your walk in Christ Jesus bring Him glory and honor as we together make a difference through Him in the lives of many amidst all challenges and even persecutions which may come our way.
Our prayer is that 2017 be the year of great rejoicing and fulfilment as you continue your journey with Him.
Always in His grip
Johan and Lesley
About the Author
Johan and Lesley Leach live and minister in remote Chavuma, Zambia, equipping teams to cross the Zambezi River into the isolated and remote area between the river and the Angola border and share the gospel in the villages.