January and February Ministry Update (Volume 9)

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Hope for the Hadzabe Part II

A First Fruits Trip

Dear Friends and Family, Mutana (“hello” in the Hadza language)! I hope that you are well. Below you will find a testimony from my latest trip to the Hadzabe Bushmen of Tanzania. Here is what God did!

Mamoya’s Story

Mamoya is the tallest Hadzabe man I know. At 5’ 11’’ he stands a full head taller than most of the people in the village.  He is a kind and quiet man, keeping mostly to himself, but persistent when it comes to learning more about Jesus.

When we arrived in Gitamilanda on this most recent trip, he was among the first to greet us. Mamoya and Melky, who is another good friend and disciple, came over as we were setting up camp. They each brought with them the audio Bible that we had given them last year and a testimony of what God had been doing in the last year!

As we chatted, they told us about how since they had decided to follow Jesus, God had been providing for them. On days where they were not finding honey or meat they would pray and God would provide it. Each one said that God would also heal the sick people in the village when they prayed. God is certainly at work among them!

As we continued to chat, each one handed us their audio Bibles. Melky’s was still in good working shape, but Mamoya’s was in three pieces, being held together by a long white twisty tie. He presented it to us nervously, hoping (I think) that we would not be mad. Of course, we expected to find some broken audio Bibles, because the lifestyle of the Hadzabe is so intense.  We reassured Mamoya that we had brought new ones for everyone and that we would give one to him as soon as we had translated the gospel of Mark. He looked relived and happy.

As we continued talking one of the members of our team saw something very interesting as he was looking at Mamoya’s broken audio Bible. Austin, who is a student at the Colorado School of Mines and was a new member of our team, noticed that the pair of wires connecting the solar panel to the battery in the audio Bible were incorrectly connected. He showed it to us and as we thought about it, we realized that these wires would   have needed to be disconnected and reconnected in order for the device to look the way we saw it. So we decided to investigate. We asked Mamoya, “what happened?” He told us that his young child was listening to the audio Bible, and had noticed the voices, and decided that he wanted to see the “little people” inside who were talking.  So he smashed the player with a rock. When Mamoya found it, it was in many pieces, so he set to work fixing it—a task that he accomplished rather well considering that he needed to solder and he had no electricity,  let alone a soldering iron.

We realized that the task of fixing the audio Bible would have been very time and energy intensive given the tools and resources that Mamoya had to use. When we asked him why he spent the time, he said, “Because it is so important for us to be able to hear the Word of God!”

Thoughts on a first fruits Trip

If I were to sum up this trip in a phrase, it would be first fruits. We saw first-hand that the seeds planted on our last trip have begun to sprout and in some cases even produce a crop! We found that the Hadzabe were still following and worshiping Jesus, that God is answering their prayers, and that they have a deep love for the Word of God.

We hope to return within the next year or so to continue the discipleship effort! Our vision continues to be that there would be a Jesus-movement started among the Hadzabe!


Other Updates

  • I will be traveling to Papua New Guinea on a scouting trip from March 14thto April 9th. My dad will be partnering with me in this mission. Prayers are appreciated!
  • I asked Taylor, my girlfriend, to marry me on February 29th. She said yes!

Prayer Requests

  • Please pray for the Scouting trip to PNG. Specifically, for God’s direction and provision –even in the small issues.
  • Please pray for the continued work of the Holy Spirit among the Hadzabe. Pray that they would continue to meet together as a church and that they would understand the Word of God and proclaim it.
  • Please pray for wedding preparation peace and ease.

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