Recently, northern Paraguay where Mark and Janet Case live, hosted the famous Transchaco Rally. It is one of the most difficult car races in the world covering over 1,500 km in three days. Normally, 60 -70 cars start but only 15 – 20 cars actually finish the gruelling race.
The Transchaco Rally as an illustration can help us understand what is involved in tribal church planting and the importance of teamwork.
In the Rally, each car has a driver and co-driver, and a team of mechanics and helpers who work diligently to help them complete the course. At each stop in the race, mechanical repairs are made, drivers are given food and supplies, maps and navigation equipment are checked and updated, and then the drivers take off again. Their success depends on their teammates!
In a church planting ministry, there are many folks working hard to assist in seeing a thriving church. Language and culture consultants assist the missionaries learn the confusing language and grasp the complexities of the animistic worldview of the people. Support personnel provide services like helping with finances, accounting, guest house facilities, and the printing of materials. Church planting consultants and leadership teams assist with evaluating strategy, breaking down tasks into manageable steps, dealing with challenges, conflicts, and problems that may arise. A whole team works together to serve one another so that a tribal church can be planted!
Missionaries too are faced with daunting tasks and challenging situations that can sometimes push them to the point of breaking and exhaustion. Wisdom and guidance are needed as they face the urgency of the need and then balance that with the need to maintain a sustainable pace for the long term.
Praise the Lord that ultimately He is the one who is building His Church among the tribal people of Paraguay and around the world. The missionaries are all tools in His hands that He chooses to pick up and use to impact those around them.
Please pray for Mark and Janet as they support church planting and development in Paraguay. This month, as part of the leadership team they are meeting with four of the missionary teams to encourage, help, give guidance, pray, comfort, strengthen, and care for those who are “behind the wheel” and working in the tribes. Sometimes these team meetings are full of celebrations of seeing God’s faithfulness in taking His Word and changing lives. Sometimes they reveal the reality of the spiritual battle they are in, and that Satan is doing all he can to devour and destroy the lives of the missionaries and tribal people and hinder the ministry. Sometimes there are tears as families step out of the ministry for a variety of reasons leaving major gaps and needs. Please pray for wisdom and guidance for leadership as they meet with these teams. Please pray for them to be effective and useful tools in God’s hands.
Thank you for your prayers, and being a tool in God’s hand to bless and impact the ministry in Paraguay!