September 2017 - McCarty Ministry Minute
Something New: In the "Ministry Update" portion of this blog, you will find some links to other hidden pages on this site. These pages will tell more of the story and have many more photos and videos from the latest work in Sub-Saharan Africa. I have had requests from several folks desiring to see more of what we do and come closer to "experiencing" the work with us, so here is a first shot at that. I hope it is a blessing!
Hello from the McCartys!
It’s that time again - time for a brief update on the McCarty family and the ministry work of Strategic Impact in Sub-Saharan Africa! We trust this update finds you and yours doing well and walking in faith through all of life’s joys and trials.
Tracy has come through a season of trial with anxiety attacks which started a few years ago. She would feel as if her throat was closing up and she could not breathe. Frankly, it was terrifying! After a few trips to the ER and other medical investigations, we discovered she had a constricted esophagus and reflux. But even with treatment of those, the shock on her body from feeling like she was smothered at random times took its toll and the anxiety hung on. Praise the Lord, through some light medication and prayer, life has returned to normal. She enjoyed a wonderful summer of being a mom - Counseling at Camp Straight Arrow for 2 weeks, and hanging out doing “summer things” while overseeing the McCarty girls and all their many activities.
Cody & Dakota relocated to a new apartment on the north side of Denton. Dakota is now in her last year of Physical Therapy school, which involves mostly clinical rotations. She is beyond ready to be done with training and to enter the workforce. Cody has continued to be faithful IN that workforce, and recently received a promotion to work on-site in one of Moore Supply’s major customer’s locations. He manages their needs and takes care of any issues with their supply line. It seems to be a great fit!
Trinity is now a Junior at Denton Calvary. She will also be taking her first dual-credit course at TWU, which she is a bit nervous about. She continues to grow in her skill and confidence with singing and piano and is a sweet blessing to our family.
Remington, at age 12, is now the tallest of the McCarty Girls… even passing Tracy up in height! She is a 7th grader now and loves volleyball and basketball and school and drama club and horses… she loves most anything that is a challenge!
Sierra just entered 4th grade. She is a hoot! Just today she had headphones on and was singing at the top of her lungs. She loves reading and has acquired a taste for the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers - much to her sisters’ delight, since they are also fans.
Maw (Vival) has recently retired from her business, but she has yet to slow down! She spent a good portion of the past year caring for her step-mother and father in their declining health, and is an active participant in all the McCarty adventures!
Slow & Steady… is Frustrating, but FRUITFUL!
“Slow & Steady wins the race”… but in today’s fast paced world, it certainly does not feel like it. It feels, well… “slow,” and, well… “steady.” So often I want rapid and revolutionary. In some ways, we have hit a minor plateau in our growth in Sub-Saharan Africa - which is almost welcomed after over a decade of intense expansion! But in other ways, we are continuing to see significant multiplication - slowly and steadily.
Map of the July Work
To gain better clarity on what is happening as these movements progress, I took a small team to visit several of our locations across Zambia and Tanzania. It was quite a journey (over 1400 miles on African roads, with 2 flats from bent rims out in the bush to prove it)! We spent time with Pastors and Leaders, asked questions and listened to their victories and challenges. We encouraged and taught. We prayed and sang praises together. We visited new church plants that are direct fruit from application of what they learned through Strategic Impact. We heard testimony after testimony of how lives were radically changed spiritually and practically as a result of their involvement with SI. It was one of the most encouraging times of ministry I have ever experienced.
Challenges and Victories!
In all 10 locations we visited, Pastors & Leaders communicated the same 3 challenges in the work. They were: 1. An SI representative had not visited frequently enough to touch base with them, 2. They need more materials in the local language, and 3. The distances they feel they must cover to expand are difficult to overcome by foot.
Mkushi, Zambia Pastors and Leaders
The good news is that all 3 are easily overcome-able! In fact, we are working diligently to resolve the first 2. The 3rd will take care of itself through ongoing multiplication of leaders within walking distance.
One of the places where we saw the greatest level of success was in Iringa, Tanzania. We walked in to a room filled with 84 Pastors and Leaders - all who were strongly involved in Strategic Impact. They shared about sending out missionary pastors to surrounding cities who have planted churches comprised of new believers they won to faith and discipled to maturity! They shared about multiplying leaders locally! They shared about the lost being reached with the gospel! It was GREAT! But about 1/2 of the testimonies were not about evangelism, or leadership training, or even church planting. They were about a new level of personal holiness and high value that the word of God has taken in their daily lives because of the training they received. I wept tears of gratitude.
Prior to this journey, I had only been to 3 of these locations. The other 7 are solely the result of God multiplying His kingdom through the work of national leaders trained through Strategic Impact.
Iringa, Tanzania Pastors and Leaders
If you would like to see even MORE Stories, Photos and Videos - and to track along this last journey with us
(including bent rims and church plants!),
click HERE to start the journey!
Please keep us and our many teams in your prayers as we seek to embody the Great Commandment through the fulfillment of the Great Commission!
None of this would be possible without YOUR partnership in prayer and giving.
THANK YOU so much!