Load of Goats in Tamale, Ghana
Greetings from the McCartys! What an amazingly HOT Summer it has been this year! I hope you have found ways to remain reasonably cool. How about an encouraging update on Family and Ministry to help carry you through? If you would prefer a digital format, scan the QR Code and sign up for our e-newsletter updates. It has slightly more ministry content along with color photos and some video clips, as well. Before I get into the Ministry Update...
Reuben with his grandpa's beard hair!
Reuben is here!!! He arrived on May 8 - a tiny little guy with a full head of hair and HUGE eyes! Now 3 months old, he has kept his hair (unlike his grandfather) and his big eyes! It looks like he is continually amazed at all the great things going on around him. He took his first extended road-trip (and attended his first 2 minor-league baseball games) on our family vacation to Alabama and did great! Gideon is a proud and happy big brother.
Tracy keeps plugging away at Born2Be Therapeutic Equestrian Center. She is grateful to get to spend time with the grandsons frequently (as we all are) - and to have all of our kids still be near to us.
Gideon & Reuben’s parents (Cody & Dakota) are doing well in life. As the school year is kicking off, they plan to continue to be involved in leading youth at church. Cody faithfully continues his work at Moore Supply and Dakota is figuring out what returning to work might look like as Reuben gets a little older.
Trinity is now working on her Master’s Degree in Dietetics with the Abilene Christian University program. After one year of online instruction, she will gain experience through another year of varied internships in the DFW area. She is diligent and has a deeply compassionate soul. We are looking forward to seeing how the Lord guides her in these coming years.
Remington completed a few courses at Brookhaven College this Summer and survived 2 weeks of 2-a-days for volleyball. She played her first college level scrimmage and did great!
Sierra is sophomore at Denton Calvary Academy - and is now our only child there! (That really feels weird.) She is stepping into her own personhood. On her own initiative, she stepped beyond her comfort zone into leadership roles in Student Council and the DCA House system. We are very proud of her maturity and ability to love others well.
In June and July, I spent 33 days overseas split between Dubai, Zambia, Ghana, and Burkina Faso. It was the longest time I have spent out of the U.S. God was gracious to bring forth spiritual fruit and also provide some wonderful surprises along the way! One such surprise was the opportunity to dedicate Stephen Aputara’s (a dear friend and our former West Africa Director who passed away last year) grandson, Jadon Winsune Aputara! It was unplanned that he was being dedicated on the Sunday I preached at Good News Bible Church in Tamale, Ghana. What an honor! Here are a few stories from my time there:
We try to hold a Global Summit every 3 to 5 years. This gathering of our top continental and U.S. leaders allows us to come together in person, discuss how God has been working, share struggles, pray, train, and plan for the future of the work in our respective areas. It provides a rare opportunity for cross-pollination of ideas and strategies on a global scale. Leaders from Africa, Asia, Latin America, and North America spent 3 days together. Tears were shed, hearts encouraged, prayers uttered, and brotherly love deepened.
ZAMBIA — It has been several years since I have last traveled to Zambia - the place where Strategic Impact started so long ago. (Some of you have been with us since that inaugural work in 2004!) We traveled over 2000 miles on Zambian “roads” to encourage leaders involved with SI works in 5 different locations across the country. 2 flat tires, 1 breakdown, and 1 “shortcut” through the bush later, stories abounded of God working! Pastor Benjamin Phiri in Petauke shared that not too long ago he was very near giving up and leaving the ministry. Then SI came to Petauke with a Leader Launch. The principles taught refreshed and energized him to to the point of being excited about ministry again. He and his church have begun to multiply disciples and are planting a church. “SI changed my life. It has become a Barnabas to me. Having materials in Chichewa will be a massive help in our work of fulfilling the Great Commission.”
"Short Cut" to Chadiza
Zambia - Chadiza testimony raising leaders using SI Manuals
Zambia - Chadiza Testimony - "Don't get tired - just continue! "
BURKINA FASO — A few planes, cars, and a bus later, I was in Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso in West Africa where we trained and encouraged 78 Pastors and Leaders to continue to walk in the Great Commandment and fulfill the Great Commission through sharing the simple, powerful, pure message of the Gospel. In this Muslim-majority nation, which continues to suffer jihadist attacks stemming from Mali, the work of Jesus is spreading! One member of our leadership team (Pastor Frederick of Ouagadougou) shared that, through Strategic Impact’s training, his church planted 22 churches last year! One key measurement of “ownership” of the work is self-funding. In Bobo-Dioulasso, these beautiful servants of the Lord have begun to do that very thing! They voluntarily took up a collection to cover the cost of expansion into new areas where the name of Jesus has yet to be heard!
Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso - Where they worship catfish in the creek. This man is offering whey (the high-protein water after making cheese).
Traditional worship in Pastor Issiaka's church.
GHANA — Sometimes Pastors and Leaders come to an SI training because they hunger to saturate their area with the Gospel. Other times, it is because the leaders above them required them to attend. In Tamale, (seen as the stronghold of Islam in northern Ghana) our first day of the Leader Launch training appeared to be the latter. Day One lacked the engaged zeal typically present in our meetings. By Day Two those attending began to understand and see the value of what they were receiving. When we closed on Day Three leaders showed full commitment! After closing the training, 2 Pastors (Emmanuel and Elijah - I’m not kidding) from the village of Mion agreed that they might lose the passion they felt for fulfilling the Great Commission if they simply returned home and unpacked. They agreed to make the 1 hour journey home, greet their families, and then continue on their motorbikes over an hour further to a village they knew had no church in order to win souls for Jesus. They did just that! Within 2 days, they had won 24 souls to Jesus and launched a new church. They will take turns visiting the church until a new leader is equipped to pastor it.
Pastor Thomas - Effectiveness of evangelism training - We now meet under trees because we cannot fit in the building any longer!
Tamale, Ghana Leader Launch - Evangelism Training Practice
Brothers and Sisters in Christ, the Gospel is going forward into places where it has never been preached! This is happening because YOU have sent the Lord’s workers into the harvest! “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!’” (Romans 10:14-15)
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THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
- The McCartys
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Mozambique Leader Launch training
Things that just make sense in an African bathroom...
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