GO Trips
Nigeria 2024

Nigeria 2024 – April 30

May 1, 2024
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It was another full day in Jos! We broke bread with Rachel for breakfast and headed over once again to SIL to observe and learn about Rachel’s work. We enjoyed a devotional time that the staff holds daily in the morning before any work begins that is focused on prayer, and it was sweet to spend this time with our brothers and sisters from different tribes and tongues (although the prayers were done in English). We are so glad that Rachel is part of an organization where seeking the Lord in prayer is central to its mission!

Jimmy spent a more focused period today observing Rachel’s work. Her and her team were focusing on finding where the Miya language pauses when someone is telling a story. As they translate biblical narrative text into this language in the future, it’s easy to see why this was relevant! We also learned from a conversation with a manager at SIL that while some in the missions world are communicating that there is a much smaller need in Nigeria for linguistics and Bible translation workers, in reality the need is still great. A lot of the Bible translations that are planned will not be able to gain traction unless this need is met. Please pray as you read this for God to send workers in this area to serve Him at SIL Nigeria!

I also observed Rachel today, but spent a chunk of time with Josiah (a close friend of Rachel and new friend of ours) who pulled me out with him to run some errands in Jos. Just as we did driving from Abuja to Jos, we saw cars extensively lined up in the queue for gas. It made me sad to think of having to spend a large part of one’s day waiting to simply put gas in your vehicle. May we as God’s people be filled with gratitude for access to transportation!

After Rachel finished work, we all returned to visit Yohanna and Florence, who we saw yesterday. They have three young boys and asked Jimmy to share the Gospel with them formally as an ordained pastor. The children have grown up around Rachel as close friends, and are in a deeply Christ-centered home, but culturally, Florence wanted Jimmy to allow them to have a moment to signify as their start of walking with Christ. When they asked us to return to their house for this purpose today, we responded with a joyful “YES”!

I was deeply moved by watching Jimmy share the Gospel with three sets of captivated ears. I took a ‘mental photo’: I’m 23, halfway across the world, in a stone house that resembled something from ‘The Chosen’, sitting next to my sister in Christ (Rachel) who I met just 4 days ago, as my dear brother Jimmy shares what Jesus accomplished on the cross. I was emotional. And the great news: The boys’ hearts were softened, and they prayed with Jimmy to accept Jesus as Lord! We praise God for this first evidence of the miracle of salvation!

After some more fellowship with the family, we took photos, hugged, and said our goodbyes. This was hard for Jimmy and I, unsure if we will see them again before heaven. I brought the boys a soccer ball as a gift the day prior when we visited, and had a sweet moment getting to play with them and take a photo that I didn’t have the chance to yesterday. I will never forget the work of the Holy Spirit through Jimmy, and the opportunity for us to set a Christ-like example of Biblical Manhood to Florence, Yohanna, and their children. I’m so thankful they have Rachel as well, and that Rachel feels so loved by them so often here!

Our busy day took us right from there to dinner. We were kindly invited to dine with another family from Rachel’s work, Julie (Northern Irish) and her husband David (Scottish). Turns out, we are not the only foreign-looking people at SIL Nigeria! Them and their three daughters were great hosts, and we enjoyed tacos followed by a time of coffee and tea (in true UK style)! We talked with them longer into the night than we expected, but were filled with joy and gratitude to be able to fellowship with them in this way. We can see why Rachel loves this family too! We thank the Lord for another day of joy, safety, and peace, and look forward to what He has for us tomorrow!

– Evan

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