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The Apostle Paul writes in I Corinthians 15:58 “Therefore my brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”
I can’t imagine how difficult it would be for a person and his or her family to leave one’s homeland, start a fledgling congregation in a country with significant language and cultural differences and still remain determined and faithful to what God has called him or her to do no matter what. That is why I so admire the passion, the persistence, and the sincere desire to serve that Pastor Aaron Limmo and his family exhibit. I first became acquainted with Aaron in the Course of Study classes. He possesses a keen drive for learning and is determined to do well, even though dealing with the language barrier in his studies has to be challenging for him. Not only that, but he is also balancing his family life while starting and serving a church. Now he faces an additional test.
Those he loves in his home country of South Sudan are presently experiencing the ravages and heartbreak of extreme flooding. No one except someone truly touched by God could deal with all these difficulties and not be moved to give up, yet Aaron and his family press on, knowing that their efforts will not be in vain.
In my work as a pastor, I have over the past few years encouraged our church to help the Sudanese congregation he serves in Des Moines in several ways. When the Sudanese Sunday school first began, we partnered with others in a nearby community to collect items such as markers, whiteboards, and other classroom essentials to help launch the Sunday School. At Christmas, we would supply coloring books or other items for the Sudanese children’s Christmas party. When we learned of the children’s need for Bibles, our church supplied the funds for the Sudanese Sunday School to purchase appropriate ones. One of the life lessons I have tried to impress on my church’s after-school students has been to do whatever they can to help others. One of the latest service projects we attempted was to collect cans from the community and redeem them for cash. Funds collected from this endeavor were added to church donations to help support the conference‘s effort to aid in Mabaan flood relief.
Even though God has given all of us different work to do, it is important for us to as Paul so well put it, “Give ourselves fully to the work of the Lord.” Every work of goodness big and small will have a tremendous impact most certainly make an eternal difference.
Individuals and churches are welcome to make a donation to the Mabaan Flood Relief by sending them to the Iowa Conference Treasurer, 2301 Rittenhouse St., Des Moines 50321. Please note #53321 MF on the MEMO line.
Rev. Loretta (Lori) Shannon
Member, Iowa Conference Mabaan Flood Relief Fund Raising Committee