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Kenyans in Wanganui

Earlier in the year NZCMS, in partnership with a number of churches and groups across the country, hosted a 'reverse-mission' team from Kenya. This team was split into smaller groups and sent to various parts of New Zealand. We've invited representatives from the team to write some reflections on their experience. Other reflections can be found by clicking here.

By Pastor Kinyua Kathuri (Ingestre Street Bible Church, Wanganui)

He had been advised to be very careful about publicly sharing his faith. Now he was in a public toilet talking about Christ with a total stranger! And the stranger loved it! Joseph shared aspects of his story and the Gospel in the most unlikely and unpredictable places.

A month ago, we at Ingestre Street Bible Church (ISBC), Wanganui, were privileged to host Joseph, Tony, Lilian, Calista, Jimmy & Milly and Emma from Kenya for a short-term mission. One of the objectives for their visit was to work alongside us, as a church, in reaching out to our city with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This team acted as a catalyst in assisting us engage our world.

Wanganui is our immediate world. The ISBC planning team did a splendid job in creating avenues for the Kenya team members to share their faith. The Kenya team members shared their faith with courage and in winsome ways. Many days after the mission, we still receive encouraging feedback from people whose lives were touched and challenged by the team. Their sacrifice for the Gospel was worth it. Through their work here, God is opening opportunities for us to enter schools, people’s homes and hearts. The narrative they started hasn’t stopped-sharing the Gospel through our stories. How would it be if each one of us shared our faith story to our neighbours, colleagues or even strangers? How would it be if each one of us continued to intentionally invite people both to church and to a relationship with Christ? What will it take for us to engage those who live next door to us?

Engaging our world means that we will present the Gospel across the street and around the globe. We are being challenged to not only pray and support missionaries but we will also to pray and participate in outreach (in its different forms) within our city. Engaging our world is a call for us, as individuals and as a church, to be salt and light in our city.

Did the stranger come to faith in Christ? Not then, but a seed was planted. The stranger attended ‘The Kenya Experience’, a cultural concert that the Kenyan missionaries put together. Was Joseph embarrassed? No! Actually he was surprised at the wisdom and boldness that God granted him at his hour of need. Each one can reach one.