One thing I love about God is that He chooses the least likely vessels to carry out His plan. God chose Moses, a man who was raised in Pharaoh's home, committed murder, and had a speech impediment to lead the Israelites out of slavery. God chose Gideon, the least in his entire family and from the weakest clan in the whole tribe of Manasseh, to defeat the Midianites with only 300 men. God chose David, a sheppard as well as the youngest son to defeat a Philistine champion named Goliath with just a sling and a stone. What do all of these stories have in common? God called upon the least likely vessel in an impossible situation so that ultimately His name would be glorified.
In 2 Corinthians 4:7 Paul explains, "We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not ourselves."
God chose us who were unworthy, to be holy and blameless, and He entrusts us as His temple to carry out the light to expose the darkness in this world. We, as citizens of heaven, not only have the privilege of trusting in Christ but we have also been given the privilege to suffer for His name's sake (Philippians 1:29). It is when we admit our weaknesses and look to Jesus for strength that He is most glorified. "...Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible" (Matthew 19:26).
As we had the opportunity to get to know the current Rejoice Project leaders in community four, I couldn't help but feel a heavy burden to pray for them. This bold group of women have stepped out faithfully to serve in a community where Satan is evidentially trying to steal, kill, and destroy. Although division, selfish ambition, and deceit are evident around them, the Rejoice Leaders' hearts are burning for the children and people of their community to know Jesus deeper. Even though this team is small in number, by faith, they can accomplish the impossible.
Old Testament leaders had great examples of faith. In Hebrews 11 it describes faith as "the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen." By faith, they overthrew kingdoms, sought justice, and reaped the harvest of God's promises. By faith, their weakness was turned to strength. The same God who accomplished much over two-thousand years ago still claims victory through broken jars of clay. I have faith that as the women reach out to community four, because of the light from the great treasure in their hearts, God will receive praise, glory, and honor throughout the land.
My prayer for Community Four is that Jesus's name would penetrate hardened hearts and that lives would be radically transformed by the Gospel. Paul teaches us in 1 Timothy 2:1, "... to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them." It is so exciting to know that the same God who fought for the Israelites to be freed from the yoke of slavery, is fighting on behalf of this team in East Africa. For such a time as this, I ask that each of you would join me in this fight to make Jesus's name known by lifting up our brothers and sisters in this spiritually dry and weary land.
I will leave you with the Rejoice Project Coordinator's final words as we left the community.
"Be blessed and don't stop preaching the Gospel."
To God be the glory, forever and ever.
Gracie Ann Irby