50 Stories: A Roller coaster ride

50 Stories: A Roller coaster ride Cover Image

I’ve always wanted to work for the church and to be a missionary. TfG helped me to do that.

During my year of service, I was a children’s worker at an Anglican church. We’d go to primary schools for talks or break-time ministry. We even went to McDonald’s and booked the top floor and set up shop. We played games, we talked about Bible verses, and made it relevant to their lives.

Being a Christian in South Africa is not unusual. If anything, it’s a trend. If you’re not a Christian, people ask, “why aren’t you?” So it was quite a shock for me to come to England, where many people don’t go to church.

It was very hard to accept. It was challenging from my perspective, but for the people I worked with, it was normal. The big question was how can we reach out to people to keep them hungry for God?

My faith level dropped. When I first arrived, I was on a high. But suddenly, people are questioning you on a very intellectual level. In South Africa, when you tell someone about Jesus, they accept it and they’re hungry for more. In England, when you tell people about Jesus, they ask why.

It questioned my ability to minister. It questioned my effectiveness. I felt incompetent. As a youth worker, why wasn’t I reaching these people? It made me think I wasn’t doing a good job.

My church helped me. They reassured me. The year was a roller coaster ride. I was excited, then I was doubting, and then I got to a place where I realized it’s not about me.

It was a very humbling experience because I realized that God doesn’t need me to do His ministry. I just need to be available to do whatever He needs me to do at a particular time. Working for a church is not just about preaching, it’s about building relationships with people. A lot of your time is consumed by people wanting to spend time with you. Knowing that someone is there and cares, and that there’s a God out there that loves us, is more important than trying to convert them.

--Zlu