Advent: The Mission of Light
Through the Advent season, we light candles to remind us that Christ came on a mission to bring the Light of Life to our dark world. That “on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned” (Isaiah 9:2).
Today, Yris and Diana, disciples of Jesus in Venezuela, are carrying Christ’s mission of light to those living in spiritual darkness on the Dark Mountain.
Yris belongs to a church cluster with a vision to “multiply disciples to go and share the gospel to those in need of Jesus in our region.” She was trained by Global Disciples to direct a leadership development training—equipping people with the skills, knowledge, and character to carry out this vision.
Then COVID-19 restrictions forced them to suspend training for more than a year. When they restarted, Yris reported, “What we saw was amazing. Every participant was eager to develop their spiritual lives so they could serve God and serve others. Their hearts were burning for lost people!” The participants formed small groups and began to practice sharing the Gospel and leading others to maturity in Christ.
“Yet, the testimony of the work of God is not just in the participants, but in what God did through them!” Yris said.
This small group chose to do an evangelistic outreach at Monte Oscuro—literally, the Dark Mountain—where people struggle with poverty and physical hardship. Many homes are broken because family members have migrated to find work or security. Those left behind are discouraged by overwhelming social and political difficulties. “They are desperate for hope and assurance; there is a deep spiritual hunger for God,” Yris said. “Jesus was good news for them!”
Monte Oscuro needed the light of Christ. Yris, and participants like Diana went house to house, listening to needs, sharing truth and hope in Christ, and being instruments of blessing in God’s hands.
On their last night, they organized an evangelistic meeting out on the streets. Diana stepped up and preached the good news of Jesus, inviting people to come to him as Savior. Many were moved, and eight people gave their lives to Christ. “It was a glorious night,” Yris said, “and the Holy Spirit led everything that happened. Now the new believers are being discipled in our church cluster. We keep working on the streets and with cell groups in different homes. Now the light of Jesus is shining in the darkness of Monte Oscuro.”
Rejoice with us that a light has dawned for those living in on the dark mountain. And pray for disciple-makers like Yris and Diana who continue to carry the light of Jesus to dark places.
–B Gerhart, Global Disciples
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