Spiritual Development

Crossroads are one of life’s inevitabilities. Traveling down the highway of life, one will come to a fork in the road. To move forward, that is to have any hope of reaching the desired destination or outcome, a choice has to be made.
Camping at a crossroad, hoping the decision will go away, or turning around and going back the way one came, are indeed choices, but, not very good ones as such avoidance tactics will not lead to where one wants to go. Perhaps the most paralyzing thought is “What if it is the wrong choice?” which is a valid concern.
All choices have consequences! Some positive… some not. Some reversible… some not. Some with short-term effect… some with long-lasting, even eternal effect. To move through life with a joyful expectation of the future, avoiding wrong turns and dead ends, one must choose wisely. In such a daunting task a “roadmap” and a “guide” would be helpful. The good news is they exist!
The name of this ministry, Africa Crossroads, arises from two facts. First is its location at a literal, geographic crossroad in northeastern Botswana. Secondly, it is the desire of every member and supporter of this ministry come is to meet fellow pilgrims at their crossroads.

+++ TO BE CONTINUED +++

MINISTRIES:
Church Leadership Development
Marriage and Family Ministry
Theological Education
Long-haul Truck Drivers

Church Leadership Development

Africa Crossroads Ministry is involved with six young men and women who are zealous for the Lord. They approached Keith and asked that he mentor and guide them in their pursuit of Biblical knowledge. Their mission is to reach this area and eventually the whold nation with the message of salvation.

Keith also is mentoring two older men who hold positions of leadership in their church. As a triad, they encourage, instruct, and grow more and more in relationship with each other and in their faith.

Marriage and Family Ministry

Africa Crossroads Ministry has been invited by The Africa Institute of Marriage and Family (AIMF), based in Swaziland, to become partners with them in this vital ministry. There is a huge need for teaching on marriage in Africa. Almost no one is teaching on this subject from the churches of Christ or from any other groups for that matter. African marriages and families are being torn apart by AIDS, infidelity, divorce, and sexual misunderstanding. Couples don’t know how to communicate. They long for godly teaching about the home. The AIMF is a means of addressing those needs.

The AIMF program is presented in three formats. The first is the teaching of a 30 hour course in academic settings such as Bible schools. The second is teaching a 2-3 day Marriage Seminar in a host congregation and they invite anyone who wishes to come. The third and most preferred method of teaching is to facilitate a Marriage & Family Workshop at a host congregation including attendees from other congregations in the vicinity. Here participation is limited to married couples who are not only interested in improving their marriages, but more importantly, have the potential to take what they learn back to their congregation, becoming marriage mentors or coaches. Each couple receives a workbook that will be completed by the end of the workshop, taken home and used as a resource in teaching others.

This ministry is run by Fielden and Janet Allison who teach at Africa Christian College in Swaziland. The Allisons, during the months of June through September, travel a normal teaching circuit up through South-central Africa (Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi), to East Africa (Burundi, Uganda, Kenya) and then back through South-eastern Africa (Tanzania and Mozambique) returning home to Swaziland. The trip is about 10,000 miles. During the ten to fourteen weeks spent traveling, they teach in at least fourteen places as well as do follow-up visits in places where previous seminars were held. They have cordially invited Africa Crossroads Ministry to become partners in this ministry.

Plans are to raise money for a new vehicle as it is a tortuous journey and requires a vehicle in excellent shape, and hopefully, join the Allisons in this ministry in 2014.

Long-Haul Truck Driver Ministry

Long-haul truck drivers are a highly mobile, predominately male group, who are away from their families for lengthy periods of time. The resulting separation from their wives leaves them vulnerable to prostitution and has led main trucking routes to become a major source of the spread of HIV/AIDS. Consequently, long-haul truck drivers are considered to be one of the Most- At-Risk-Populations (MARP) and constitute a concern for the community of Kazungula since it is a major stopover for these drivers.
Approximately 2,250 outbound trucks per month pass through Kazungula towards far flung destinations in Angola, Zimbabwe, Zambia and the DRC. Drivers spend an average of 3 days in Kazungula; but if the ferry breaks down, which seems to happen on a regular basis, this can easily become 7 days. The largest backup observed so far was a line of 152 trucks almost 2 miles long. Each truck usually has two men: the driver and a security guard.
In view of the threat posed by HIV/AIDS, many strategies are being employed to halt the spread of this disease. The Botswana Government has introduced sex education very early in our schools. The signs and billboards that dot our communities are another educational strategy aimed at informing people of the risks posed by HIV, encouraging the use of condoms, and stressing the importance of getting tested. Condom dispensers are located at strategic places, the contents of which are available at no charge. The Government has opened an AIDS testing center in Kazungula offering free tests to any trucker no matter where he is from. However, many of these strategies are aimed at the person after the commission of the behavior that puts them at risk. Africa Crossroads (AC) seeks to prevent the behavior that puts them at risk in the first place.
The behavior that puts these men at risk is a choice. Education is important. Knowing the facts about HIV/AIDS, how it is spread and how to protect oneself from the disease is an integral part of fighting it. However, “knowing” the right thing from the wrong thing, or a good thing from a bad thing, is usually not the biggest challenge. The biggest challenge is finding the moral strength and courage to do the right thing.
Along with education, many HIV/AIDS programs rely upon the use of condoms for the prevention and spread of this disease. In addition to product failure, improper use and the dislike of their use due to the diminishment of pleasure, encouraging the use of condoms tends to send the message that the risky behavior is inevitable. The sentiment is that “men will be men!” In that sense, defeat is conceded. AC takes a higher view of mankind. Our belief is that these men are capable of controlling this behavior, a temptation common to all men, making a decision of moral judgment with access to the spiritual strength to stay true to that conviction.
AC seeks to establish a “Trucker’s Chapel” where all drivers will be welcome, making available:
  • A place to sit, relax and visit
  • Lifestyle counseling
  • Bible study
  • Church services & devotions for believers
  • Bibles, Christian Literature and general reading material
Stephen Lekgwata is a Christian brother employed by a major African freight company. He works in their office at the Kazungula ferry, which conveys all traffic across the Zambezi River to Zambia. When not required to be at his desk in the building, he sits outside and reads his Bible. When our neighbor, whose work often takes her to the border, found out we knew Stephen, she said, “Ah, that man is always reading his Bible; he reads his Bible too much.” What a testimony!
God has placed the burden of reaching long-haul truckers on Stephen’s heart. His Bible, which is always in plain view, leads the drivers themselves to initiate conversations about God. We have begun to meet and pray for God’s vision of how to reach this unique culture of people with the Gospel.