This article was originally published in the May 2020 edition of ITMI Monthly.
I can not go to Poland. I am not allowed to minister in Romania. I would not be allowed to get on a plane to most any of the countries that ITMI has obediently ministered in for almost 40 years.
The world is pretty much shut down for foreign missionaries.
Unless you are embedded in one of these countries, you are pretty much not getting in. There are a couple of countries that will allow you to enter via a specific airport, then mandate a 14 day self-funded quarantine, before you do anything in their communities.
With all the human decisions and health issues blocking, or seemingly blocking us from carrying out our ‘great commission”, we had to stop and first of all, be grateful for where God has sovereignly placed us.
We then needed to seek His face for what He would have us do in this unique and unprecedented situation. Thirdly, we needed to then accept, in faith, that He would make a way. Thus Project Joseph was launched – feeding the believers and the lost who are caught up in this worldwide shut down.
Charl van Wyk reminded me last week via Whatsapp as we discussed the results of Project Joseph that Proverbs 18:16 says this,
“A man's gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.”
Charl is getting reports and seeing it first hand that these gifts of food and sanitary supplies are opening doors that were previously closed. Community officials are noticing the help that is being given during these times, the willingness to serve at their own expense and possible peril.
God is speaking through our partners to those that now are really listening and wanting to know about the “hope that is within us.”
Children receive food in Stone Hill.
"A Christian is a keyhole... through which other folk see God,” we are reminded by Robert E. Gibson.
We all are a keyhole to our own families, our own neighbors, our own church, our own community. God has given us an amazing opportunity to display His love and truth and His hope during these times.
How are we doing? How would others say we are doing? What more does God want us to accept His help to accomplish for His glory?
Joseph told his brothers when they feared for their lives, “Do not fear, for am I in the place of God?” (Gen. 50:19). He knew he was where God had placed him.
Joseph then said those very famous and often repeated words, “…you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good, to bring it about that many people should be kept alive….” (Gen. 50:20) God clearly had a plan in Joseph’s up and down life.
I love these last two verses, “do not be distressed or angry with yourselves because you sold me here, for GOD sent me before you to preserve life.” (Gen. 45:5)
“So it was not you who sent me here, but God.” (Gen. 45:8)
God is giving us a special opportunity to be Joseph to our families, communities and our brothers and sisters across the world. May we first, be truly grateful for this opportunity, then ask Him how He would have us to stretch outside our comfort zone.
Next, we need to by faith step out and allow Him to do so much more than we can possibly conceive. We are here, ready to partner with you and our Polish, Romania, African, and Indian brothers and sisters…may we all be found faithful.
Blessings on each of you!
In His Service,
About the Author
Steve Evers has advocated for and served the ITMI partners as ITMI Director since 2001. Approximately once a year, Steve visits with ITMI partners in their countries and brings stories back to encourage supporters. Steve enjoys photography and mechanics, (both hobbies that have greatly benefited ITMI partners!) Prior to becoming ITMI's Director, Steve served on the Board of Directors for 4 years. Steve lives in Arizona with his wife, Darlene.