Daily Topic for February 18, 2008

Matt. 8:10
"'I tell you the truth, I have not found anyone in Israel with such great faith'"

Who had such great faith? A Roman (Gentile) centurion. How ironic was Jesus’ discovery! One outside the Jewish nation, and isolated from the revelation Israel had received, had greater faith than those inside Israel. What made the difference? Many of the Jews were taking for granted God’s Word to them. Though we today have access to the Bible in dozens of versions and a Christian message with the switch of a dial on radio or TV, these privileges are no assurance that Jesus is going to find faith among us. In fact, not only faith, but even the awareness of the purposes of God for the nations can disappear from our minds when we fail to obey what God commands.

Father, teach us to obey!

Nanumba People of Ghana

Poverty has been defined as “the fear of not having enough.” When people act on this fear, it results in panicked, selfish, violent attempts to ensure their own survival, often at the expense of others.

This is precisely what has taken place in West Africa. As recently as the l990s, the peoples of Ghana went to war over the seemingly insignificant issue of the market price of a guinea fowl. Hundreds died and the Ghanaian government had to intervene with military force simply because of an economic disagreement concerning the price of a bird.

The Nanumba people were part of that conflict. While they appear to be a sedate farming people, the Nanumbas have been engaged in power struggles with surrounding tribes for centuries. They consider themselves to be an independent state, and are highly resistant to any attempts to influence their social behavior or spiritual beliefs. The 35,000 Nanumba people residing in Ghana practice a traditional, Animistic religion that involves idol and ancestor worship. There are very few Christian believers among them.

Learn more at joshuaproject.net

Ask God to break the spirit of poverty that motivates the Nanumbas to fear and fight against their neighbors. Pray for their hearts to come to a saving knowledge of Christ and, in the process, be released from the bondage of selfish ambition and greed. Pray that Christ will be glorified by transformed Nanumba villages.-CL

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