Monday, May 20, 2019

"I was involved in a fatal motor accident."

This is not an opening line that you often hear in a story.  Archbishop Ayoub Mwakang'ata of the Full Victory Gospel Ministries dropped this line on us while giving us his testimony in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.  I thought to myself that since Swahili is the first language for many in Tanzania, that maybe he misspoke.

But then he told his story:
Bishop (center) with Pastor Anthony (right) and wife (left)

He had been serving in the military for about twenty years and was on public transportation (a matatu - a bus/van) in Iringa when the van blew a tire.  The driver lost control of the vehicle and swerved left, killing two pedestrians.  It then swerved right, killing three more pedestrians.  It then rolled and passengers were thrown from the van.  Bishop Mwakang'ata was one of those who was thrown from the van.  But then the van hit a tree, and unfortunately, it rolled backward, on top of the Bishop.  He was declared dead at the scene.

Six hours later he was in a drawer at the morgue.  One of the doctors at the hospital recognized his name from the list of those deceased and asked if he could see him.  Upon opening the drawer, they saw that he was face-down.  When they turned him over to be face up, he groaned in pain.
He was alive!

They rushed him to ICU and miraculously five days later, he walked out of the hospital.  He had several broken bones, a contusion in his skull (for which he later had to go to South Africa for treatment of a brain injury), and other injuries, but most of all he had a new lease on life.
As he told us his story, he let us know that he had received his BA (Born Again) in 1985.  The accident happened in 1999 and he retired from the military shortly thereafter (following 35 years of service).  That was when he started a Christian newspaper as well as the Full Victory Gospel Ministries.  While Dr. Mwakang'ata has his Ph.D. in Finance, he spends his time in discipleship. 

We had the privilege to spend two days with various bishops and pastors from his church, which is pursues going deep rather than wide.  We had the opportunity to hear the encouraging story of one of his pastors, who attended a DML workshop two years ago and how it has changed his life.  I don't have the bandwidth to upload the video of his testimony but in short, he started a business as a result of the training with only seven dollars, which then grew to seven hundred dollars, and this week he is signing a contract for $7000 dollars.

He has also taken the youth in his church through my book, Financial Freedom For Families, and the youth brainstormed together on starting a business.  They have started a spice business and apparently are doing very well!

We are starting to hear more and more of these stories of people who have made changes in their life and a year or two later are seeing the fruit.  We thank God for this!

A very bright and sharp youth, involved with the spice business.  She has good marketing skills!

Sometimes we have to get a bit creative with technology:  we needed two projectors - one for English and one for Swahili.  But there was only one good place to project, so we ended up projecting the English on the floor by our feet.  This was so that the person doing the Swahili projection knew when to transition to the next slide for the English.