Africa (MNN) — In the mission field, collaboration can bring about some beautiful results. In the case of World Missionary Press, partnering up with other mission organizations and individuals means opening more doors to sharing the Gospel. Helen Williams of World Missionary Press shared the story of their work with Soles for Jesus, a ministry working from Wisconsin to distribute shoes in Africa.
She says that about three years ago, the two ministries met face-to-face at a conference. “We realized what they were doing. We were working with some of the same people. We were providing literature, and they were providing some of these ways to open doors.”
They decided to try partnering up, and this partnership brings together two very similar missions — to reach the under-served with the love of Christ as they share the Gospel. So in May of last year, they shipped a container of Scripture booklets and shoes to their contacts in Zambia.
Williams said their contact emailed and said, “We waited and prayed until the two amazing gifts combining shoes from Soles for Jesus and literature from World Missionary Press arrived.”
The shipment contained 2,560 boxes of literature, which is just over one million booklets, and 6,000 pairs of shoes.
Williams says, “He also said in a follow-up email that they were able to get into villages that had been resistant to them to just come in and share the Gospel. But this gift of shoes was the opening and then they were able to share the Gospel.”
Because it was such a successful distribution, the two ministries are planning on two more distributions this year — one to Botswana, and one to Burkina Faso.
“We are just really excited about this. It is such a wonderful ministry to be partnered with and it’s such a blessing to the distributors in the field that they’ve got these tools, they’ve got these gifts to give and it opens the doors and softens the hearts and helps them see the love of Christ,” Williams says.
So, why does combining physical aid while sharing biblical truths work? Williams says it’s because sharing the message of God’s love is much more effective when we demonstrate it.
“I think we need to get to the place where we show the love of Christ because so much of the world does not know that love. They don’t see a demonstration of it daily.”
As she explains, Jesus cares about our physical needs as well as our relationship with Him. As His followers, we get to live out that care in our actions towards others.
“It’s one thing to speak in eternal terms, but much of the world is living in harsh, day-to-day reality without much of what we just take for granted — we here in the West, particularly.”
By acknowledging their physical needs, we can make a way to discuss their spiritual needs as well. And it’s when we show this genuine care that we express how God has changed us, too.
Williams says it this way: “This is what Christ’s love does to the heart, it makes us, as believers, want to give and want to meet needs. And that’s the changed heart.”
World Missionary Press partners with a variety of mission groups who provide aid like food, or contribute to building projects like medical clinics, churches, and wells. But they also supply Scripture booklets to individuals who go on trips, whether it’s a mission trip or for vacation.
Williams says to anyone who is getting ready to go on a trip: “Be sure and take Scripture booklets with you. We have them in 346 languages. You know, take them along if you’re meeting other needs, if you’re with a medical team. A lot of people take them and share them with people in the waiting room.”
And even after you leave the field, the impact continues. By establishing contacts on the ground, World Missionary Press can continue to supply local believers with the resources to reach their community.
Looking ahead to their shipments with Soles for Jesus, there are a couple of ways you can help. First, pray. Williams says it’s quite common for shipping containers to get delayed with processing in the shipping port. This drives up costs and delays distribution. She asks you to pray that the processing would go smoothly and quickly.
And, she says, “Pray for the distribution in the field because these people in these countries are waiting, they’ve got teams prepared. And just pray for the distribution and the sowing of seed.”
If you’d like to help financially, your gift today will go towards the printing of Scripture booklets and shipping costs in the future. All of the resources from World Missionary Press are free for distributors, so they rely on generous donors to keep printing. Click here to give.
To donate or to request literature, click here or call 1-574-831-2111.
To learn more about Soles for Jesus and how you can help, click here.
By partnering with World Missionary Press, you’re joining in on the mission to get the Word of God out to those who have never received it before.
Williams says, “I want to encourage everyone that the Lord is at work around the world. We see souls coming to the Lord from all areas and all sorts of situations.”