It is hard sometimes to know how the Spirit of God moves among the unknowns of life, but I have seen again how it works when we trust God to do His work in our lives. “The mind of man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” I am in the category of men who often wants to know how things are going to be worked out, so that I can plan and prepare. However, God often works in other ways that surprise me and remind me that He is in control.
This is my fourth trip to the Congo. God answered my prayers last year by giving me a vision of starting a media school here in the Congo. This year I returned with about $2000 worth of video equipment provided by myself and Josh Cox, a young man who came on last year’s trip who has the same vision. The equipment is for a young man named Prince who showed up at our hotel last year and announced he wanted to start a photo and video production school in Bukavu. Rather than give him the equipment, we wanted to do something to earn it. But what? So I began talking to my contacts in Congo about what he could do. One of the people I have been helping in Congo is Richard McDonald, who runs a radio station and has 5 reporters who want to learn video and audio editing. I have worked with them in the past and I also brought equipment to them this year. I had Prince sit in on my training to learn more about editing and observe how I trained. He will continue the training once I leave. I had another idea of partnering with one of my early Congo video workshop members who has started a music video business in Congo and have Prince work for him and receive our equipment as payment. However, I could not get in touch with Degaulle, the music video guy, to work out the details. So here comes the second special work of God. The day before we leave Bukavu to go to south Congo, one of our business students tells me that DeGaulle called him and told him that he heard I was looking for him and he was on his way to meet me! He was agreeable to my plan for Prince and things are set. Prince will earn his equipment and learn about music videos. DeGaulle will get a free worker. A win-win. But wait, there’s more. I met another young man at one of our business meetings who is a musician who wants help setting up a music studio. And guess what, he knows Prince. Then today, we met a man who does catering and hires videographers. So I gave him Prince’s contact information. Finally, on our way to see the eastern lowland gorillas near Bukavu I was talking to the person who drove us there, one of the first men who has had success with our business seminar, and he brought up the idea of making training videos for people to learn how to use their video camera and take photographs. Wow. I can hardly keep the tears of joy from swelling up even talking about it.
The work here is slow. We are changing hearts and minds about how God has made us to be creators and subdue the earth. We also stress that starting a business is difficult, even more so in the Congo with a recent past history of war and a government that often impedes business. But, we are seeing improvement. We are trying new approaches to the business training and learning more about the Congolese culture. Each day we met with previous business contacts and met new ones. They are all hungry for change in their country and eager to learn.
We have a couple more days in South Congo to talk to people about starting businesses and then we head home. Thanks for your prayers and see you soon.