Our team had the opportunity to see and hear first-hand how God is moving and how He is working through the lives of the missionaries on the ground. Our main contact was Chris, who has been in France with his family for many years.
Sunday, we went to church with his family and a colleague. It was incredibly impactful to worship together the same Lord in different languages. There was a projector for sermon notes and we had a translator so we were able to follow along. The church was full of warm, welcoming people, with a mix of nationalities and generations. The body of Christ made us feel like family, even with the cultural barriers. That’s what Christ does!
Our team had a chance to hear from Chris and his colleague about ways Taylors FBC can partner with them in southern France. It was wonderful to hear the strategic and powerful ways the gospel can and is going out to the North African communities. We also met a North African Berber, who shared how there is a growing number of Christians in his people group—a people group that traces their lineage back to Simon, Rufus and Alexander. The Berber peoples were part of our early church! He was the fifth person in his city to convert and has such a great passion for our Lord and Savior. He had to leave his country due to his conversion but hopes to be able to go back when his French Green Card is available. He is a man on fire for Christ and has a great desire to see his people come out of darkness and into light!
One of the most strategic activities we did was prayerwalk the college campuses, described by Chris as “unchurched territories” because of how few evangelicals are there. We wanted to see if there were opportunities for Taylors to minister to the students. It is difficult to get on the campuses. Though one university is walled and the other nearly inaccessible, we found there are still possibilities to reach the students there. The harvest is plentiful and the opportunities are great for the gospel to be shared.
One afternoon, we connected with two Journeywomen, who actually attended an upstate university, of all places! The team clicked well with these young women who are there to support Chris in his efforts to connect and share with North Africans. It was amazing to see the city through their eyes. They took us through the surrounding North African communities to pray for the families and businesses there. We saw a nice coffee shop where different churches volunteer to serve coffee for one euro, therefore drawing the college crowd. English lessons are also offered, lending to opportunities to share the gospel.
On one of our drives, we visited a historic church situated high above the city. It offers a fantastic view of the densely populated city below, which is adjacent to the Mediterranean Sea. It was a testimony of God’s power and wonder! We prayed over the city, asking the Lord to bring the right harvesters to that beautiful place. Chris also drove us to ports where they do Bible distribution. It’s a strategic location and Chris believes that if these places see revival, it could rapidly spread across Europe. Please ask us for more stories. We’ve got so many to share! God is Great. He does Great things. AMEN!
- for ONE North African man to come to Christ and be raised up as a leader in this movement, as the North Africans will respond better to one of their own countrymen.
- for opportunities to share the gospel of Jesus Christ on college campuses and through English lessons at the coffee shop.
- for many to be saved through Bible distribution at the ports, and for the gospel to be taken back to the countries from which they came.
- for the Lord of the Harvest to bring laborers to this amazing place.
- for our church as we discern the part we’ve been called to play in ushering in His Kingdom in southern France.
“”With several empty tables in the hotel breakfast area, we wondered why the couple sat at our table. We would soon find out. Initially they seemed a bit reserved, so I began praying for a way to have a conversation with them. A question about the hotel led to other general topics. Hoping to get to a spiritual conversation, I asked about a church in their town. Soon the woman had told me about her father she was very concerned about. When I asked if I could pray for him, she readily agreed. After the prayer, with tears in her eyes, she reached out to hug and thank me. When Steven learned they have a Bible but don’t often read it, he encouraged them to read the book of John together. She volunteered to give me their contact information. When we saw them as they were leaving the hotel, she again hugged and thanked me. In a text message she wrote, “To meet you was a precious moment – we will not forget the moments that we shared.” They thought they chose our table because the chairs looked more comfortable, but God had a greater purpose in mind.”
Carolyn Freshour, Team Participant