We recently returned from the fourth Oral Bible Storytelling (OBS) workshop for the cluster three participants at the Abau Training Centre in Yabru. In spite of this being the ninth OBS workshop since February 2014, there seem to be new challenges to be faced and new things to be learned. God is always faithful and each course we learn more about who He is as well.
We landed in Yabru knowing there had been no rain for many weeks. Rivers had dried up, fresh fish were not available nearby, and some of the water tanks for drinking and bathing were quite low. Before our arrival, many prayers had been prayed for the needed rain. As we slept the first night, a huge storm came through dumping inches of water and filling the tanks with the necessary water. It didn’t fill the rivers, but it brought what was needed. We were quick to point the people to God as the source of the rain that had blessed us. Because of the dry conditions, staple foods were more difficult to find. But, again, God was faithful. We never went without food; we got a bit creative a couple times, but God always provided.
As we studied stories from the life of Moses, The Passover, The Red Sea, Manna and Quail, and The Ten Commandments, they took on new meaning. The story of the Passover points to Christ and His finished work for our sins. It is always exciting to share those insights with some who may have never heard those parallels. We also shared a Seder meal with the participants and staff. Seeing the Passover through the eyes of someone who might have been there is always a unique experience in which each person can walk away with a new understanding of the Passover symbols and their meanings.
As they left Egypt and miraculously crossed the Red Sea on dry ground, it would seem the Israelites would be riding high on all that God had done. However, it didn’t take them long to forget and begin to complain. God provided manna and quail for forty solid years to hundreds of thousands of people; what an incredible testimony to His compassion and concern for His people. Even when they complained, God continued to love them and provide for them. Am I thankful for God’s provisions or do I complain? Am I quick to forget all He has done for me?
Five language groups continued to tackle new stories at this course, so they can return to their communities and share God’s truth from individual stories. We are thankful for the impact these stories are making not only on the lives of participants, but also communities. Pray that these new stories will be told faithfully and that God’s truth will be planted in the hearts of many.