These are Their Stories

We Have a Lot to Learn From These Leaders

Here we are currently in Ethiopia. As I look around. I’m astounded that most of these leaders have been persecuted for this faith, some imprisoned and tortured. I am humbled that we can walk alongside them in their development, for we have a lot to learn from these incredible men and women. These past two weeks we have been teaching on Spiritual Leadership and Leading Teams to these participants. When we leave from this place I will return with our team to the States where we’ll celebrate Christmas in safety with our loved ones. When these leaders depart from this gathering they will face injustice, and will dare to be lights in dark places. But they will thrive because they go in the strong name of Christ. We have a lot to learn from them. In six months they will: come back for our next visit to Ethiopia. return to be with us because they truly want to learn and dialogue together as a group about how Christ-centered leadership can be played out in their specific contexts. report the way that God has changed them in their leadership, thus changing their churches. share about the times they have messed up as leaders and will receive the grace that Jesus freely offers. And we will have their names on our lips as we leave from here and will remember to bring them before the Father. I don’t say these things because I’m depending on this great program we call The Garden Project. This

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Saying Yes To God

What does saying “yes” to God look like for Mary Lu and her husband Doug? Read her story about how saying “yes” brought her to Freedom to Lead International.

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Privileged to Serve

Last month Freedom to Lead International was in Ethiopia. This is a report from the President. Dear Friends, Thank you for praying as seven FTL team members from various locations travelled safely, and everyone stayed relatively healthy. Our indigenous ministry partners were very excited as they learned two modules of The Garden Project: Peacemaking  and Spiritual Leadership. They reported on the profound impact of former FTL modules both on themselves and on those they lead.

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I Am Reverend Fofana

Imagine 27 church and mission leaders from Cote d’Ivoire, Benin, and Madagascar gathering together to engage in stories and discussions about Leadership for a Healthy Church. This is what we have been privileged to witness this past month. One participant shared that he had a vision the night before of a water pump that would not yield water. He said, “in my vision, I was so thirsty so I used the water pump but no water came out. I did not know what the vision meant.” What he later came to learn was that the image of a rice field vs. water pump style of leadership is our driving image for this first leadership module. We encourage the leaders to be “rice-field” (Christ-centered) leaders rather than “water pump” (power, big boss) leaders. It’s a simple image, but it has profound impact.

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Interview with Yariwe in Bamako, Mali

New Music Monday

A Water Pump or Rice Field? We regularly hear about the impact of songs through New Music Monday (NMM) posts. However, what about the impact of the symbols used in Freedom To Lead’s innovative curriculum? In today’s video, Yariwe, a young Bambara pastor (and musician) talks about why he is so excited to see The Garden Project curriculum come to Mali. Yariwe talks specifically about the contrasting images of a rice field and a water pump. For this reason, featured here is the following song, “A Water Pump or Rice Field?” This song is recorded by Yariwe and the rest of the Bambara music team as the background music.

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Abigails in Ethiopia – Agents of Reconciliation

Violence is dividing the Ethiopian people, but a cohort of Christian leaders is resolved to walk Abigail’s path to peace. Many Ethiopian people in East Africa are desperate. Demonstrations are fueled by widespread discontent over the declining quality of life throughout the country. Leaders of the opposition party have recently been arrested, leading to increased unrest. Electricity, water systems, and infrastructure are collapsing, and daily life has become difficult for many. Within the mayhem, a group of Christian leaders want to be agents of reconciliation. They are embracing Abigail’s example to avoid further bloodshed among their countrymen.

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Leadership Matters

We believe that leaders make a huge difference in people's lives.