Many dynamics are similar anywhere in the world. People everywhere struggle with sin and forgiveness; coveting, anger and hatred, lust, stealing, etc. On Sunday I preached at the Zarephath Church about God’s love and being His children from 1 John 3 and Romans 8. Afterwards we had discussions with Theophile about some of the implications of applying this in everyday life in Rwanda. He reminded us of the reality that exist in the Church in Rwanda.
On a Sunday morning there are people with smiles; worshipping, singing, dancing, and praying. This appears beautiful on the surface. And, in some ways, that is accurate. However, there is a different picture beneath the surface. In 1994 genocide took place in Rwanda that continues to affect in significant ways the Church of Rwanda today. Every Rwandan was personally affected by the genocide. As Christians gather to worship there are those present who participated in the genocide. There are orphans and widows present who lost their spouse and children, parents and siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins… In some cases the killers are present in the same congregation and they know each other and who did what. There are wives and children present who have a husband or father who has been in prison for eighteen years based on the testimony of others who are worshipping in that same local church.
Put this dynamic in the context of God’s truth that we are now one family, God’s children, brothers and sisters in Christ. How do you live that out in the context of the reality in Rwanda?
Only by the power of God’s love and His Spirit living in His children!
God will be praised among the nations as the Church in Rwanda demonstrates the power of God by the way they love each other. Hallelujah!!!