Church in South Sudan

FRM Newsletter


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I have spent many hours praying about gearing down operations in Afghanistan and have even started the process, but in my heart, I could not find peace about it. Every day we continue getting desperate pleas for help from people who are terrified.  It has been two years since the Extremists initiated their reign of terror, and the world has largely forgotten the plight of the Afghan people.  If we want to understand what has been happening in Afghanistan, we have to go back to the late 1930s with Nazi Germany to understand the terror these people are going through. The citizens in Germany quickly learned that the laws of their country would not protect them. And the dreaded knock at the door meant that the Gestapo, who were stone cold killers, was on the other side. Torture, death, imprisonment, and all the horrors the mind can conceive were a very real possibility for normal German citizens and the Jewish people.

Last week, I was asking the Lord to give me wisdom because with the stories coming in from the field, I could feel the fear of many women and families.  As I was driving to get my car washed, I felt the Lord tell me to turn on the radio. I turned on KWAVE (a Christian radio station in my area) and heard a man talking about holding a one-and-a-half-pound premature baby girl who was not expected to live. The doctor explained that human touch is so very important to a premature newborn, so this gentleman continued holding the little girl through the night as she fought to survive. The man telling this story said that this little girl was born in Afghanistan and was disfigured due to a cleft palate. I did not know which program was being aired or the name of the man giving his testimony, but I sensed God was trying to get my attention.  Afghanistan loses more babies in childbirth than any other country in the world–for every 1,000 children born, 103 will die. The man continued with his story that the child should not have survived but beat the odds, and later she was able to have surgery to repair her cleft palate. The man asked the doctor what would happen if she were not able to have the surgery, and he said she would never marry. Women have almost no value other than as a wife, and any flaw makes them worthless. As the doctor sewed the last stitch to repair the cleft palate, he said, “Now there will be a wedding!”

I sensed the Lord telling me to continue operations in Afghanistan. We have a list of many widows who do not have the ability to save themselves. When people are hurting, I cannot ignore it. This causes me pain, and I find peace when we are able to deliver people from a life of terror.  When I first got out of the Marine Corps, I struggled to find a job that allowed me to make enough money to make ends meet. I had to live in my car for a few days.  Even with a steady paycheck, I could only afford to rent a garage for the first few months. I adapted and learned to bathe in a small sink and how to live off food that did not require refrigeration. I only had to be concerned for myself, but many of these people we are rescuing are large families with one parent. I found my niche in the sales industry, and money was not a problem for me anymore. But I thank the Lord that He let me experience such circumstances.

I know the stress one goes through when wondering how to provide.  We are attempting to settle the remaining refugees in other countries. We have just enough funds designated to cover their transportation out of Afghanistan and to safety. Can you imagine being resettled halfway around the world in a new country with no contacts, no money, needing to learn a new language, and then finding a job to support your family? My hope is that we will be able to provide them with at least $1,500 -$2,500 to get them into safe living conditions and to have food until they can begin supporting themselves.  Brent, who is on our staff, shared that many Afghans in other Middle Eastern countries are in danger of being deported if they cannot demonstrate they earn enough to live. They are often threatened by false accusations, and there are reports of some losing the little money they have to illegal extortion, some being imprisoned, and others being deported. I told Brent to give them at least $1,500 – $2,500, and I would find the money. Here are a couple of their testimonies.

One widow, L., lived in with her husband and their four children. L.’s mother, a naturalized U.S. citizen, visited the family in Afghanistan last year.  The Extremists are notorious for their suspicions of anyone with connections to the U.S., so they followed L.’s husband to his workplace, a small repair shop. They tortured and eventually killed him. When he did not return from work, L. went to find her husband. She found him brutally tortured to death. She is now a widow with limited rights as a woman under Islamic law and is forced to try to provide for herself and her four children. She told Brent that she is a Christian and is afraid that she and her daughters will be forced into marriage by a Extremist soldiers. She begged us to get her and her girls out, and I have green-lighted the operation.

Another woman, F., lived in Afghanistan with the youngest of her seven children. Her husband, a drug addict, had divorced her and then gave six of the seven children to his parents to care for. One day she saw hundreds of people running to the airport to escape from the Extremists. Realizing this was her only chance, she got on the plane with her son. She cries every day because she is not able to rescue her six other children, and she has asked us to rescue them.

God’s Word speaks to us in Proverbs 24:10-12 about how the church is supposed to respond:

If you falter in times of trouble, how small is your strength! Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?  Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay everyone according to what they have done?

Over the last 20 years of ministry, I have witnessed a constant truth: the deeper you venture into the realm of darkness, the more costly it becomes. And when it gets hard, most people abandon the cause; but commitment is defined as a firm decision to do something no matter the cost. I want you to understand we are winning souls from Satan’s kingdom. Every person we have in a safe house is being taught God’s Word daily and many are coming to Christ.  If you feel called to help, any amount will be a blessing.  We can combine small gifts with others to save as many as possible. I would ask every pastor to read this to their congregation and ask their body to save the lives of another five, ten, or as many as they can. If each church would do this, I believe we will save many.

Proverbs 19:17 says:  Whoever gives to the poor lends to the Lord, and he will repay him for what he has done.

Wes Bentley
Far Reaching Ministries

The photos in the newsletter show the design of two new Calvary Chapels under construction. One is for the military headquarters and one for the police headquarters that we are building in South Sudan. We are also including photos of one of the two new orphanages that are being built in Ukraine. You will also see two new homes for abandoned and abused women in Mexico being given to the family. For security we cannot show anything about the Afghanistan operation.