The Cost of Choosing to Stay…

I wanted to share the below with you (with permission). It’s from one of my best buddies on the planet. He’s a key Burundian leader, very gifted, and willing to lay down his life for the cause. He gave up a very secure international job which guaranteed paying his children’s education to follow God’s call back to working in Burundi. He’s the real deal. May what he writes move you to further prayer for our nation, and beyond that to helping him if you can. It also gives a picture of how things currently are. Notwithstanding the grim situation, it remains our intention as a family to return there in January. Do take a read:

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“Dear friends, we are extremely thankful to God for the way you continue to prayerfully support us without failing.  As hardships increases, I thought I’d give you a brief update so that you may pray intelligently.

Last week, a member of our fellowship I’ve seen being restored to fullness after a pretty shattered life insisted he wanted to see me urgently. He’d decided to leave the country definitively. His wife, a direct victim of the previous ethnic killings, could not cope anymore, he told me. We prayed and cried together and then I sent him off with hope to see him again. The following day the man who had worked with me since my early years in student ministry also asked to see me. This man has been literally with me in many dangers. He is so trustworthy that he could be trusted with anything. As long as he was around my wife and I could go anywhere in the world, spend as much time as needed with little worries about our children. He too had come to let me know that he’d decided to leave the country. It is too much and too dangerous for his family, particularly his teenagers. I could hardly take it and yet I had to. Sharing it with my wife who has been experiencing high blood pressure since the crisis started was both hard and dangerous.

These two men are examples of how the political and security situation is increasingly getting hopeless. In order to be witnesses of God’s love to people in growing despair, we need to learn to “believe against all hope” (Rom 4:18).  Please pray for strength and courage to speak the truth in love and for protection because, in times of such political divisions, enemies of the truth are on both sides and dangers come from all directions. As much as I want to be a faithful servant, I still want to be a good husband and father who protects and provides for the family – a balance hard to achieve in times such as these. The crisis has caused my wife and I not to get part of the income with which we had been paying fees for our daughter Francine who studies in London. She got there after she obtained miraculously a partial scholarship and one couple that knew her when she was very little offered her accommodation. This time we are not able to pay our part (£13,000). Pray with and for us to see her through (she still has two years to complete and she is doing very well both academically and spiritually). Pray that as we wait for the One who started the good work in her to bring it to completion, we may dwell in the shelter of the Most High and experience the rest coming from the shadow of the Almighty (Ps. 91:1). In that way we will continue to serve him as we wait for his salvation.”

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Thanks for praying. Do contact me if you can help in any way. She gets bumped off the course, I believe, by the end of next week, if the money doesn’t come in. Jehovah Jireh, we need your breakthrough now!

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