Sophia’s True Salvation
Back in December we went to a church pretty deep in the bush. Chinjala (Hunger) Baptist Church. This is a new church filled with either newly saved members or just visitors. Kevin is teaching basic Bible discipleship material to this church on Saturdays. When my Mom came in December we visited this church on a Sunday and had a wonderful time! After the message many came forward requesting counseling. Some wanted to learn more about salvation, some had sin issues and some were struggling with other problems.
I was able to use an interpreter to speak with a lady name, Sophia Tembo Mbewe. Mrs. Mbewe told me that Satan had control of her heart. She said she could only do those things that he wanted her to do. I asked Sophia if she was a Christian. She said yes so I asked her to tell me about how she became a Christian. She then told me about her baptism. I kindly explained to her what the Bible says about true Christianity and the reason for baptism. I used scripture from Romans to show her the way unto salvation. I told her that while baptism was a good thing it was for people who want to obey the Lord and show the world they have already become a Christian. I asked her if she understood the difference now and she said yes. I then reminded her that in the book of Romans, Ch 10 verse 10 it says, “For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation”. I wanted her to understand that this was a commitment between her and the Lord. I recommended she go somewhere quiet and pray, asking Him to forgive her of her sins and become her Lord and Savior. I told her she could talk to him about anything. She didn’t waste any time to go over to a tree behind the church and pray.
However, communication can be a difficult thing between foreigners and nationals. I prayed for Sophia for days each time I thought of her. I hoped that she had received true salvation and the forgiveness of sins. It would be awesome to see spiritual growth in her life and to know that Satan no longer had control over her life. Time passed and we went to several different churches after that visit. A month or so back we visited that same church but there was no Sophia. In fact, the whole attendance was down due to rains. So, I hoped it was the rains that kept her away and continued to pray for her as the Lord brought her to mind.
This past Sunday we visited Chinjala Baptist Church again. To be honest with you I wasn’t even thinking of Sophia when a woman on the side of the road asked for a ride. As Kevin pulled over to let her in the truck I noticed it was her! I asked the Pastor if he could remind me of her name and did he know if she had truly received Christ as her Savior. He remembered her and said yes and that she was spiritually growing. Still unsure and wanting to make sure, I prayed about how I could talk to her after service.
When service was over I asked the Pastor to interpret for me so that I could speak with Sophia. She and I had shared smiles the entire service. When we sat down with her I told her that I remembered her and had been praying for her. I then asked her if she remembered me. She said yes. I then asked if she could tell me what happened after church back in December. Then she smiled big and said she became a Christian and has changed. J I was ecstatic! I asked her if she had been reading her Bible that we gave her. She said no because she can’t read. In Zambia (or most third world nations) many people will take anything as a gift, even if they can’t use it. I asked if there was anyone who could read that might read the Bible to her so that she could know what God expects of her as new Christian. She said her younger brother would be able to do that. I then asked if she had any questions she wanted to ask about being a Christian. She said she was having problems with speaking harshly to her children. Again, I wanted to shout! And maybe I did…?! I was very happy to hear that not only did she recognize that there was something wrong with speaking harshly but that she had the courage to say so. I truly believe THIS is true salvation and the fruit of the Spirit working in her. I encouraged her to have someone read to her the book of Proverbs. Proverbs has so much help for speaking harshly to others as well as training our children. God is so good to have given me an opportunity to help Sophia in her spiritual growth.
The Pastors wife said she would try to read scripture to Sophia before or after church on Sundays. I know that God knows her situation and will provide a way for her to grow spiritually if that’s her heart’s desire. She can also be going to the teachings that Kevin is doing on Saturdays and I will continue to pray for her. She is married but her husband is not a Christian. Please pray for Mr. and Mrs. Mbewe. God is faithful and able to do exceeding, abundantly more than we can ask or think. He is a rewarder of them who diligently seek Him. With God, nothing shall be impossible.
I am encouraged by Sophia’s testimony and am reminded of why we are here in Zambia. Lately our power has been off all day for 3 days a week. Kevin was sick for 4 weeks straight. After running as many tests as possible here in Chipata we never found out what was wrong so therefore we couldn’t treat the infection. Praise the Lord, he is better now. I’ve been more than usually homesick for family, friends and the comfort of America this pregnancy. A lot is going on that makes me wonder some days, “Why are we here? Should we be here?” It’s days like that Sunday that keep us going. Praying for many more of these days!