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#PRAY127 03.23.20

In the last two weeks, the entire world has been flipped on its head as we all deal with the coronavirus outbreak. As such, I’m going to triple-dip on this week’s #PRAY127 request. 

Our Partners

The reality of the spread of this virus is undeniable. I was speaking with a healthcare professional last week and we were talking about the serious nature of the virus. Not so much because of what it does to the individual, although it is certainly dangerous in the elderly and those with compromised immunities. It was more about the lethal speed of the virus, not only it its transmission, but in its ability to mutate and adapt quickly. 

When I think about what a fast-acting virus with no quickly-disseminated treatment could do to the people in some of the areas where Man Up serves, it is truly frightening. Not frightening in the sense of death, necessarily – all people will one day die. In fact, I’ve come to realize that most of Africa is far more competent to deal with death than those of us in the U.S. It’s more about the hope of the dying. Do they have it or not? 

When I think about what a fast-acting virus with no quickly-disseminated treatment could do to the people in some of the areas where Man Up serves, it is truly frightening. Not frightening in the sense of death, necessarily – all people will one day die. In fact, I’ve come to realize that most of Africa is far more competent to deal with death than those of us in the U.S. It’s more about the hope of the dying. Do they have it or not? 

For our partners, they will be on the front lines representing their people with very little access to the technology we have the West. And yet even with our technology, you see what has happened to Italy, and the fearful worry of our U.S. healthcare professionals about the ability to treat a full-on pandemic here.

The reality is, none of us knows how this will turn out. But as followers of Jesus, we can be confident that one day, everything will be better. Not just better, but perfect. It’s this hope that we have that enables us to endure the here and now. Christians shouldn’t in any way be fearful. Yes, we should exercise prudence and caution, but fear is for the birds. Ours is one of a sound mind. 

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.  – 2 Timothy 1:7

In this time of uncertainty, we can be certain of one thing – Jesus. We can be certain: 

  • Jesus died for our sins and proved He was God by rising from the dead (1 Cor. 15:3-4). 
  • Jesus has prepared a place for us with Him to enjoy forever (Revelation 21:2-3). 
  • Jesus has everything under control (Ephesians 1:22). 

Our first #PRAY127 request today is that you pray that our partners in the Dominican, Uganda, and Ethiopia will be able to convey the certainty of Jesus in uncertain times to those who need hope. And that’s all of us! 

Those Who Are Sick 

Along with the first request, we ask that you pray for several of our partners in Uganda who are battling malaria right now. It’s common for adults to get malaria in Africa, but it nonetheless is not a fun experience. With the threat of coronavirus, it can complicate recovery and indeed can be deadly. Please pray for two partners in particular – Sylvia and Mercy (pictured below) – as they battle with overcoming malaria. 

Authentic Masculinity in Ethiopia

We are so very excited to announce that last week, we finally launched our Authentic Masculinity Program in Ethiopia! For those who have been following the ministry, you know that the reason we started the ministry in the first place was because our visionary, Roger Gibson, adopted there. Many of our board members have adopted from Ethiopia as well, and despite our keen interest in Ethiopia, ministry has been nearly impossible to do. 

We have had a good partnership with Carry 117, an NGO in the trash dump of Korah who takes women from the dump and teaches them how to make beautiful handcrafted bags and accessories. By purchasing these products and selling them here, it has been a way for us to fulfill the E2 strategy of Man Up, which is to Empower Single Mothers and Widows. When men have abdicated responsibility, these women need training and a market to sell their products. Over the last several years, Man Up has purchased nearly 1000 products from these women. 

Right down the alley from Carry 117 is another ministry we were introduced to in 2017, Brook Hills Development Organization (BHDO). BHDO primarily deals with women and children. As we have gotten to know them and they us, we realized that a need to address the men in the community, a community wrought with poverty and hopelessness, most of whom make their living off the dump in some capacity. Our AMP platform provides a great opportunity for these men. 

After literally years of deliberation and discussion, and still not without details to work through, we are so pleased to announce that on Sunday, March 15, the Cohort officially launched! Yesterday we had 9 of the 10 men in attendance and believe the 10th will be joining next week. We have two coordinators who help administer the program – Tamirat and Sami – and Yemamu, the BHDO Executive Director who oversees the legal ramifications. We also have an American from Teach Beyond who is helping us by sitting in on the Cohort meetings (Eric), as well as our friend Toi who is all things BHDO from here in the United States. 

This is a very, very exciting development! But as I mentioned, we have some kinks to work out. Please pray for the following:

  • That the men enrolled in the program will take the year-long commitment seriously. 
  • That we would be able to raise the necessary funds to administer the program (we need about $1500/guy in Ethiopia as compared to about $1000/man in Uganda). 

That we would be able to work out the financial and legal logistics of doing business in Ethiopia, which has been traditionally cumbersome. 

I know it’s a lot this week, but we value your partnership in these every-Monday-at-1:27 PM #PRAY127 requests! God bless you as you hold tightly to the hope we have in His Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ!

Regards,
Jeff Ford, CEO 
Isaiah 1:17  

P.S.S. Please pass this email on to those who might be interested in praying with us each Monday. They can sign up to receive these emails here: https://manupandgo.org/pray127

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