A Season of Revisits

Posted on Nov 15, 2016 in General News | Comments Off on A Season of Revisits

An exciting update from Steve Wilson:

Over the last few months Sally and I have been in a season of revisits.  God has been giving meaning to events and relationships from our history with Him. We would like to share one of those with you as a means of encouragement that God is orchestrating all of our lives – even when we don’t understand the purpose of what we are experiencing in the moment. He knows the whole picture and occasionally gives us just a little glimpse.

plantThe Comoros islands are a chain of four islands in the Indian Ocean, located just north of Madagascar. The islands were French colonies, best known for the llang llang flower, which grew native and was exported as the base for French perfumes.

The people live laid-back lives with abundant resources from the sea, in a nation where beef has to be flown in but lobster is plentiful. It intrigued us that fisherman would go out early and come home after catching only what they needed for the day.

In 1975 when the Comoro Islands got their independence from France, Sally and I were in Kenya. We had just finished language school and settled in to our mission station. After a couple of months we made a supply run back to Nairobi and timed it to attend our first mission conference.

During one of the first meetings the director of our mission began to speak about an urgent need and an incredible opportunity in the Comoros. It seems that when the Islands demanded independence, the French responded by flying all the professionals back to France, leaving the Islands in a desperate state. Without doctors or engineers the hospitals shut down and the new government needed help fast. They put out a radio message to any nation in the world who would send them doctors, nurses, teachers and engineers to help get the infrastructure up and running again.

He told us that there was a small Malagasy church on the main island but apart from that, these Muslim islands had never had a mission presence and the only known Comorian Christian was in prison at that time for his faith. The crisis they were experiencing had opened the door and he was asking for volunteers to go.

Sally and I were sitting on opposite sides of the room and both heard that we were to be a part of the solution. Our mission quickly put together a team called “Groupe de Service Volontaire” made up of a doctor, a nurse, a teacher and Sally and I. We were the first people to the Island after independence and our job was to get the main hospital in the capitol city of Moroni on the main island up and running. My job as an engineer was to get everything working – a real challenge, especially since I had never worked on medical equipment. To make it worse, all the manuals were in French, a language I only took in school for a couple of years. I did wish I had studied a little more while in school.

It was an incredibly intense few months full of prayer, spiritual warfare and divine intervention. I had a personal spy under the guise of acting as my translator that followed me everywhere I went and reported back to the government every word I spoke. We succeeded in getting the hospital functioning and even held clinic on one of the other islands; then it all came to a sudden end. After we had been there a few months, a Chinese ship pulled into the harbor and off-loaded 100’s of doctors, nurses and engineers onto the island. China had responded to their plea for help and became the first nation to recognize the fledgling government after independence, cementing a relationship between the two countries that still exists today.

Our team was asked to leave the three main islands but was able to keep a small presence on the island of Mayotte. Several times over the years we have wondered if there was any real impact from our time there. It seemed like a brief parenthetical period, almost a distraction from the work we had been called to.

untitledNow, fast forward to last month when we were attending the Voice of the Apostles conference in Lancaster PA. Mike and Deena Van’t Hul, missionaries in China, were sharing their testimony and told the story of a miracle provision that had just taken place in their lives.

They had needed a new larger facility for their ministry and desperately wanted to start a school. In the midst of their need God gave them favor with the mayor of their city and he came to pay them a visit. During the visit he was so impressed with what he saw that he gave them land on which to build the new facility. The Mayor had also brought a friend with him who just happened to be the vice president of the Comoros Islands. As soon as the mayor promised the land, the vice president piped up and promised them that the nation of Comoros would pay the construction costs for the building, a donation equivalent to about 1.75 million US dollars.

Not only that, but this leader in the Comoro government was a committed Christian. God has allowed us to see fruit from the small investment we made in this tiny nation of the earth. Suddenly, all our frustration at being asked to leave because the Chinese had taken over has been turned into a huge financial blessing to a ministry we are involved with. Next year we will have the privilege of visiting them and helping dedicate the building. Only God!

Next week we travel to Regina, Canada for the weekend, followed by some family time together for thanksgiving. Then the next weekend we take a team from Dayspring to South Africa for a crusade/conference and meetings in two different churches. Thank you for standing with us and for all your prayer on our behalf.

Living like Kings Kids,


Steve and Sally