ALPHA RELIEF

A New Believer On the Run...

One of the many mosques found on the streets of Ethiopia, where less than 2% of the population are Christ-followers.   Photo credit

One of the many mosques found on the streets of Ethiopia, where less than 2% of the population are Christ-followers. Photo credit

As a part of the Global Advance mandate to carry the burdens of our brothers and sisters in Christ (Galatians 6:2), our Alpha Relief initiative supports some thirty-three undercover missionaries world-wide. One of these missionaries runs a rescue center in Ethiopia. Just a short time ago, a twenty-one-year-old woman came to this center in desperate need of help, on the run from her father, brother, and uncle. She had become a Christian, and the “shame” she had now brought upon her Muslim family, in their minds, made her no longer worthy of living.

Here is her story… 

Zemzem (name changed for her protection) grew up a Muslim. In fact, her father sent her to a Quranic school where she was brilliant enough to memorize the entire Quran, even though she could understand little of it. One special day, Zemzem was celebrating her thirteenth birthday with a party when a beloved family member joined the celebration. He arrived by car, accompanied by another man Zemzem had never met. After witnessing some hand shaking between this man and her father, and some crying from her mother, Zemzem was told to leave this festive occasion in the car with this relative and stranger. This extended family member had always been so loving and kind to Zemzem, she had no apprehension whatsoever in agreeing to this request from her father.

Upon arriving at the stranger’s home, Zemzem was now informed that she had just become this man’s wife. Zemzem was thirteen. It was her birthday. Zemzem had little understanding of the concept of marriage, and no understanding of what was expected of her in this new role. This was the beginning of what Zemzem described in a drastic understatement as “a sad journey.” While she served this man for many years as his wife, Zemzem never considered herself married. Zemzem had three children and was “divorced” by him once he grew tired of her, while she was still just a young woman. 

It was in this time of despair that a different stranger, one with different motives, introduced Zemzem to Jesus Christ. Out of desperation, Zemzem had returned to her parents’ home to live, and this gospel messenger warned her not to tell others of her new-found love for Christ, as repercussions would certainly follow. But, in short order, Zemzem’s family noticed the change that had taken place in her. When Zemzem’s father asked about her transformation, she could not hold back from speaking the gospel message of salvation to her family. From that day forward, Zemzem never spoke with her father again, as she barely escaped his presence with her life. Her family has now vowed to hunt Zemzem down and execute her.

Today, Zemzem, a new believer, is on the run. Thanks to your support of Global Advance through our Alpha Relief initiative, Zemzem has a place to which she can run – a refuge from those who hunt her. 

A Desperate Call for Help: Reaching the Rohingya in Bangladesh

Pastor Bony and the Taleb family (wife not pictured)

Pastor Bony and the Taleb family (wife not pictured)

The Rohingya people group have suffered for decades under ethnic and religious persecution. Now, after enduring fighting in Myanmar, many Rohingya - who are both Muslim and Hindu - have fled their home country for refugee camps in neighboring nations. Pastor Bony, a Global Advance and Alpha Relief initiative partner in Bangladesh, has felt the burden to ease the suffering of this community inside his home country, while at the same time sharing the love of Christ with them.

While working in one of the two official Rohingya camps inside Bangladesh, Pastor Bony was requested by a friend to check on the well-being of a few specific families inside the camp. One of the families Bony visited was that of a Muslim named Abu Taleb. Bony spent a good portion of the day with them, discussing their situation within the camp and distributing some much-needed aid to them. As he departed, Bony gave them his contact information in case they might ever need his assistance again.

Little did Bony know that he would receive a desperate call for help just two days later. It was Abu, who, in a panic, shared with Bony that his elderly mother had been missing for two days. They had searched everywhere within the camp to no avail. Bony was their last hope.

Bony was heart-sick with this news. Immediately, he informed his team within the camp of the situation, as well as the appropriate army and UN camp officials. Then they began to pray, and everyone began to search. For over a week they prayed and searched without success.

Eight days after this discouraging news, Bony visited Cox’s Bazar, a city some thirty-five kilometers from the Rohingya camp. At approximately 5:30 in the evening, Bony was walking the street about ten minutes from his hotel. There, in the mass of humanity, he saw what appeared to be a woman lying in the road. Bony immediately asked a local rickshaw driver to come and help him attend to this lady who, for all intents and purposes, appeared dead. 

Bony with Abu’s mother

Bony with Abu’s mother

As Bony approached the woman, he recognized her clothing. Bony took out his cell phone and looked at the recent picture he had taken with the Taleb family – it was Abu’s mother! Bony immediately attended to her urgent physical needs and informed camp officials of the situation. Within three hours, Abu’s mother was back in camp and reunited with her family.  As it is impossible for a refugee to leave a Rohingya camp, everyone recognizes that what happened on the evening of May 25th, 2019 is nothing short of a miracle. 

Because of these events, Bony now leads a house church inside the Rohingya camp, and the Taleb family are members. When asked how and why something like this could have transpired in their family, Abu’s reply is this: it all happened so they could know the one true God.

Our Global Advance national team of leaders in Bangladesh is strategizing to see churches planted in every village, and we are lifting their arms to help them accomplish the task. Through our Frontline Pastors initiative, local pastors are convened and trained in church planting. Fueled by the Alpha Relief initiative and gospel-compassion in their hearts, local leaders bring food and water to the Rohingya, along with health supplies for nursing mothers and children. They also provide Bibles and collect mobile phone numbers as they go so they can follow up and encourage seekers and new believers in the Word.

KINGDOM WINS: BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS FOR GOD’S GLORY IN NIGERIA AND BEYOND

KINGDOM WINS: BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS FOR GOD’S GLORY IN NIGERIA AND BEYOND

In Northern Nigeria, just over 38 million people belong to the Fulani unreached Muslim people group. Less than one percent of the population professes to be Christians. This month, outside the city of Jos, Global Advance delivered urgent aid to persecuted Christians living in an Individually Displaced People (IDP) camp.

2019: THE YEAR OF UNPRECEDENTED ACCESS!

2019: THE YEAR OF UNPRECEDENTED ACCESS!

As we embark on our 29th year of ministry, God has given Global Advance unprecedented access to advance the gospel in 2019. See what amazing opportunities await…

GOD RECEIVES THE GLORY AND GIVING NEVER FELT SO GOOD.

GOD RECEIVES THE GLORY AND GIVING NEVER FELT SO GOOD.

In a dusty town in south-central Pakistan villagers gathered in curiosity. The crowd grew as dusk settled and a man stood to speak…

GLOBAL ADVANCE: A YEAR IN REVIEW

GLOBAL ADVANCE: A YEAR IN REVIEW

In 2018, we have seen compelling evidence of how HOPE IS RISING in the hearts of God’s people around the world. The following Year in Review highlights this evidence – these are real numbers attached to real people

What Does it Take to Transform a Nation?

What Does it Take to Transform a Nation?

In the commissioning of his followers, Jesus made it clear: we are to be nation-disciplers. What an immense privilege – and responsibility – to partner with the Holy Spirit to propel the transforming message of the gospel throughout entire nations and regions! But what does it really take?

Enlightened Newsletter: A Summer 2018 Update from Global Advance

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At Global Advance, we're passionate about telling the inspiring stories of how hope is rising in the hearts of God's people throughout the world as together we carry out the Great Commission. Don't miss our most recent Enlightened Newsletter, where you'll find just that:

 

  • Learn how God is multiplying our original projections for a higher impact through the Esther Initiative beyond what we could have ever imagined. 

 

  • Hear testimonies of how our recent Frontline Pastors Conference in Kaduna, Nigeria is making a difference for the advance of the gospel across the Islamic rim of Northern Africa.

 

  • Read about how our resources go farther when we equip indigenous leaders like Zin from Myanmar through our Alpha Relief Initiative.

 

  • Review why the marketplace matters, and how YOU can be a part of a move of God through Marketplace Missions!

 

Click the button below to take a look at the highlights of how your support is impacting lives for the kingdom of God:

SAARC: A Big Idea From God!

Building a kingdom coalition is hard work. At Global Advance, we have spent the past three years investing in high capacity leaders in eight nations located in South Asia known as SAARC. It came as a big idea from God to accelerate the Great Commission through partnerships and collaboration in this region. We felt God’s invitation to step out in faith and begin a massive Kingdom advance into the SAARC nations of Pakistan, India, Bhutan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan, Nepal, and the Maldives.

 

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These SAARC countries represent a high concentration of unreached peoples, hostility towards the Gospel, and present financial and logistical challenges. Despite these challenges, a massive harvest potential of lives yet to be transformed by the power of the Gospel resides within South Asia.

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In February of this year we convened these high capacity leaders in Sri Lanka. The 2018 SAARC Summit was a vital gathering to continue the work of strengthening relationships for the purpose of these leaders sharing resources and ministry strengths to fulfill our common vision. We recognize that this act alone goes against the tradition and culture of this region. However, we are seeing a powerful movement of God take place.

 

This big idea is rooted in our desire to see a spiritual breakthrough to the over 2 billion people in the SAARC region who have little to no exposure to the Gospel. In partnership with these leaders, Global Advance has made a 10-year commitment to train leaders, as well as to produce and distribute resources and discipleship tools for the advance of the Great Commission.

To accomplish this task, we are working with each national team to create deliberate, bold, and focused evangelistic initiatives in each of the eight nations. The indigenous national leaders are designing the strategies that are most effective. Together as a coalition, we want to see the planting of over 15,000 churches in SAARC over the next few years.

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The opportunity lies before us and the groundwork has been laid. Now trust has been established. Synergy and passion is in play to boldly advance the Gospel throughout our SAARC network. A plan to equip South Asian frontline pastors and church planters has been formed, and the network has established teams that are already multiplying. In each nation, a multi-pronged holistic approach is being implemented to equip Kingdom leaders and Church planters, and our Alpha Relief Initiative has become a supply line for the front line of the Gospel's advance.

Your partnership with Global Advance positions you to participate in this big idea from God. Thank you for praying, giving, and sending us to empower frontline leaders for the Great Commission. Please continue to support the SAARC Initiative at Global Advance.