BY A CAFE 1040 GRAD IN NORTH AFRICA
People say, “God is good all the time.” I didn’t really understand that when flying home after spending the last 10 months of my life on a small island, which had become home for me. We had come to this island (with another sending agency) wanting to make the gospel known among the unreached. However, we actually saw vital local churches spread throughout this area, and it affirmed that we weren’t urgently needed here. Unmet expectations and disappointments left my heart in a state of utter confusion as our time was cut short. I began to wonder, ‘Then what is an unreached people group actually about and where are they?’
GOD DESIGNED A WAY.
I had always assumed that going to North Africa was for heroes and newscasts covering political unrest and religious restrictions in the area just heightened my assumptions. I did not consider myself a hero, but I was willing to go to an unreached people group. How could that actually happen? Who was going to teach me how to go? Who was going to prepare me to live life in such hard places?
When I heard about Cafe 1040, it was clear that God had prepared a way for me to take my first steps into North Africa. After a thorough application process and pre-field training, I found myself finally on the threshold of this unknown world called the 10/40 window. I couldn’t even picture what daily life would look like much less what it meant to live among those who had never heard the story of Jesus.
FINDING IT WAS TRUE.
As we settled into our new homes in North Africa, I understood what I’d been thinking and learning so much about. It was true. There were scores of people – normal people/families with lives and jobs like you and me – who have never heard the gospel or have any access to it. There were no church services or public prayers, no Christian music or TV programs, no T-Shirts with printed Bible verses or Bibles available in bookstores. This must be what “unreached” looked like in reality.
Daily life proved to be more doable than I initially assumed. Trips to different areas and towns as well as staying with local families in their home permitted me to experience life among the unreached. The burden on my heart for the unreached continued to increase. Seeing so many people on the narrow, winding streets of an ancient city or hundreds of students swarming out of a local university made me wonder, ‘How are all of these people going to hear about Jesus? Who is going to tell them? Will it be possible to make His Name known to every single one? ’
The unique set-up of Cafe’s training allowed me a glimpse of life in North Africa among an unreached people group—a life-changing glimpse that will determine my future.. Now I understand why I had to leave my beloved African island prematurely. Because He is good ALL the time, he sent me home so that He could teach me and send me somewhere else.
This story is from a graduate from our North Africa missions mentorship.