Mozambique (MNN) – For local sustenance farmers in Mozambique, the day is too short for spiritual matters. They spend eight to twelve hours in their fields every day trying to provide for their families. The rest of their time is filled with worry and preparation for drought or civil war.
Audio Scripture Ministries (ASM) offers relief from this struggle with new farming techniques in their program “Farming with God.”
Scripture and Farming
Joshua Harrison with ASM explains, “The idea of this ‘Farming with God’ is to continue with those [programs already in place] and develop a safe place where the local sustenance farmers, about 90 percent of the population actually, can come and learn about new farming techniques and technologies from a Biblical perspective.
“Right now for small farmers in Mozambique their yield is about 5 bushels an acre of corn. In the US in 2016-2017 the average US corn yield per acre was 175 bushels of corn an acre. So that’s 35 times less in Mozambique. Some of that is just because of the civil war and the age old farming techniques that have been passed down are not as effective and they haven’t kept up with the times.”
A Practical Comparison
The team in Mozambique recently laid a test plot that will use newer farming techniques. They want to compare the test plot’s harvest with those typical of the area. Hopefully this will help them see how local produce yields can be improved.
Already the test plot is providing ways to connect with locals.
“We’ve had the directora of a primary school right by the farm stop by. She was curious and asked if we’d be willing to teach the kids at school that system, instead of a slash and burn system that makes them do a lot more work for a lot less produce.”
Not only is the opportunity for teaching kids now an option, but many adults have stopped by as well. Harrison says people are asking good questions about the techniques and showing interest in the program.
Seeking a Harvest
“We are praying that they will be able to do a sustainable farming that will yield good results for their families. That will take them out of that survival mode mentality so they can start thinking about important things like spiritual truths as well,” Harrison says.
“And [with] this ‘Farming with God’ [program], our goal is that they’d be able to listen to God’s Word as they’re farming, listen to these audio teachings in their language about farming with God and farming in a way that honors God, and that this would be a holistic way of improving their lives. As they come to know Jesus, as they begin to apply new techniques, we’re praying for God to bring rain literally and figuratively [for] this harvest.”
Partnership and Prayer
ASM knows that there are other organizations doing similar farming programs. They hope that as “Farming with God” continues, connections will be made with more of those organizations and individuals.
“We look forward to partnering better with local ministries that are doing excellent work in agriculture but perhaps they haven’t been able to use audio Bibles in their ministry yet. We’re excited to bring that component of experience that we have in Mozambique of bringing God’s word in audio and seeing how that could also be a blessing to other organizations, other works involving agriculture.”
Please pray for the new “Farming with God” program in Mozambique. Ask the Lord of the Harvest to bring agricultural success and prepare hearts to grow in the knowledge of Christ.
Click here to learn more about ASM’s ministry in Mozambique.
Header photo: First test plot (Photo courtesy of ASM)