When a Door Shuts

Many years ago, my wife and I built a wooden house. One day, the wind slammed the front door shut, and one of our windows promptly fell out. Since then we have always lived by the motto, “When a door shuts, a window falls out!”

At the beginning of this year we were surprised by the sudden shutting of a door. We had spent most of last year preparing a literacy course in the local language. We returned from deputation in South Africa all set to launch when the group of churches we had worked with called us in and told us they did not share our vision. They believe literacy is the government’s job and not the church’s. It was very sad but their decision was final.

After praying about it, my wife and I decided to go and commiserate over a cup of coffee at a local hotel. At the entrance we ran into a security guard, who is the pastor of a small church that appeals to the Muslim community of the area. The church was planted by a missionary and is operated in a culturally-sensitive manner. The pastor was very open to the course. He is only semi-literate and most of his congregants are illiterate. They were very keen for the course in order to be able to read the Bible in their native language, Makua. We started the course recently in a venue located right in the heart of a Muslim village. The initial participants are learning well. The neighbours often come to watch and have showed much interest in participating in the second course. The window may well be a small one, but it opens to a field of many least-reached souls.

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