D2:7 (ACTION Zambia's Discipleship Course)
The name of the course comes from Colossians 2:6-7 "Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving." The course is overseen by our assistant director and leader of ACTION Pastors' College, Tracy Singleton and taught by two Zambian pastors. Abusas Ngoma and Simuyemba.
If you don't already know Jailos Sakala, he is our head groundskeeper at Ciyanjano and long-time partner with ACTION Zambia and also a great guy. Right now is is taking D2:7 so I sat down and asked him some questions about the class.
K: So what's the main purpose of the course?
J: First it's to train leaders. Church leaders, in ministry and building them in their faith. We're using three books for the class -"Growing Strong in God's Family," Deepening Roots in God's Family," and Bearing Fruit in God's Family."
K: So what are you learning?
J: We're learning to really read and understand scripture and to memorize lots of scripture. It really helps a lot. It's an investment, memorizing scripture is like investing money; you can use it when you need it later on.
K: So why's that important?
J: It can help strengthen you for tests in your life, or when there are temptations. It can give you faith to do hard things.
K: What else are you learning?
J: We're learning about prayer. Learning to pray according to God's will, not to change God's mind, no. It helps a lot with trusting God. Also that when God answers prayers, it can be answered "yes" or "no" or "wait."
K: Yeah, you'll never see the front of a minibus - "WHEN GOD SAYS NO!"
J: We've also been learning about our assurances of salvation through faith and belief in Jesus.
K: That's so countercultural here, and in America too, where Christianity seems to be based around salvation through works, or being good. Sharing grace can be tough.
J:We've also been learning about how to do evangelism. Learning strategies. Like !st there is your character, that people need to be able to see your fruits. We also learned about how to use your gifts, that you have as a strategy. Like when baPhiri taught those people at the clinic in George. He was just being himself. You know he is very funny and people like to hear him talking. When you see a group around him people are listening. That is a gift. And you can tell people about your testimony. So you don't need to act like you are a pastor but just talk to people like you are not a "man of God." Then you can also help people, practical things, not just theology, no.
K: So what are some of the requirements for the class?
J: We have to teach the material to a small group of 5 to maybe 7. It is a slower version because it takes longer.
K: So you're teaching the guys at Ciyanjano, all of our workers and piece workers and sometimes the contract workers for our house too. How is that going? How are you seeing God work?
J: I can see a change in them. It has really helped Phiri and Joe and also Gift. In memorizing the Bible. Also it has helped Phiri in evangelizing and encouragement in evangelizing. All of the guys are encouraged. They are understanding the Bible better. They are better able to see the truth when people are teaching or preaching, they are attentive. They are comparing the things they hear to the Word and are looking out for truth.
K: Thanks for sharing!