The Mengen believers are a changed people, and it shows in the way they treat others.
As missionaries Lourens and Marie Laureti watch the Mengen people grow in their walk with the Lord, they feel a great sense of gratitude for what God had done.
When they arrived in the Mengen village, they found fear of spirits and superstition and anger and retribution. If someone died, it must be because they were cursed. And as soon as the people decided who caused the problem, another death would ensue.
So in this atmosphere of darkness, Lourens and Marie along with Becky Preheim and Keri Pachecko, moved into the village and began learning the culture and language. They became friends with the Mengen people and Becky and Keri worked with their Mengen co-workers to translate the Scripture. Lourens taught Firm Foundation Bible lessons and soon many Mengen people joyfully accepted Christ.
But the really exciting thing is watching them grow. Lourens is teaching Romans and Ephesians right now and the Mengens are beginning to understand “new life.”
While hearing Firm Foundations Bible lessons on Romans, the people began to understand their identity in Christ. They embraced the truths about the eternal security of the believer and the truth transformed their lives.
A woman who was abused by her family in another village ran to the Mengens seeking help. She was nearly starving and her family chased her away. “So the believers took her and her two kids in and looked after them,” wrote Lourens. “She has been fed well, and they have given them some clothing as well. She is currently staying with one of the believers. Recently her family demanded that she come back but she said she would much rather stay with those who showed her love and cared for her. She is now also attending the teaching to try and find out what it is that has changed these people so much that they took her in and showed her unconditional love.”
Lourens is also teaching Firm Foundation lessons from Ephesians and is delighted that the people are beginning to see themselves as a church body. Also they are examining their marriage relationships.
“We had about ten couples from the church get together for the first-ever four day marriage seminar among the Mengens here… ” Lourens wrote. “This was based on what they learned in Ephesians about marriage. The best of all is that I did not have much to do with it, for it was organized, prepared and presented by one of our trainee teachers.”
Another major victory is that the Scripture translation is progressing well. Becky Preheim and Keri Pachecko have sacrificed much to bring the Word of God to the Mengen people.
Lourens asked for prayer for Loso, a believer who has been struggling to stand up for his faith and not fall into sin, especially mixing home brew and getting drunk. “We praise the Lord that slowly but surely over many years of hard work and discipleship we are starting to see progress in his life. He has become more faithful in small tasks that we are giving him and he has stood up against his family members and decided multiple times lately not to mix home brew and get drunk. There is still a lot of room for growth but we praise the Lord.” Lourens wrote.
Praise God with us for the spiritual growth among the Mengen believers and for the missionaries who have given their lives to be a part of seeing the Mengen people transformed by God’s grace.