FEAR, LACK OF SELF WORTH, HOPELESSNESS

Across Africa religious beliefs often embrace the fearsome belief that god(s) are easily angered and must be appeased with ritualistic works, sacrifices, or both.

This worldview often manifests itself in the physical everyday life too. It can make it acceptable to bully and intimidate others to get what you want. It gives license for fathers to be angry & demanding, requiring their children to appease them. It can also justify governments acting like angry and demanding paternal authority figures that can never be questioned, but require absolute obedience and appeasement from its people.

Biblical worldview influences every aspect of everyday life. It matters.

Growing up as a child in this environment,  life is wrapped up in fear, intimidation, and a sense of hopelessness. How can one ever do enough works to be saved? How can anyone ever be sure of salvation? They can’t.

All of life becomes wrapped up in fear, hopelessness, and lack of self worth.

WHERE THESE EXIST, CHAOS GROWS

Africa is a global spiritual battleground and a physical battleground. Since it represents 20% of the world’s population and is being radicalized, time is of the essence.

JESUS IS THE ANSWER

While compassionate projects like food, education, clothing, and water do help children in Africa and have value, only the love, Truth, hope and assured security in Christ can offer real transformation.

“So that we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.” Ephesians 4:13-16

How Do We Hope to Do This?

Children in Christ® reaches and disciples children in the most unreached people groups of Africa, ministering to them weekly through CIC Clubs as well as focused, biblically-based Discipleship Trainings for Child Leadership.

CIC Clubs

In CIC Clubs, inspired & equipped indigenous volunteers from church and community minister to children weekly to both reach and mature children in Christ.

CIC Clubs are held in open spaces so that all are lovingly welcome, no one denomination “owns” CIC, and all faiths are welcome. Clubs start with peals of laughter, with children quickly rushing into an organized joyful game. After the game, an adult mentor or appointed & trained Child Leader will teach a Bible lesson. CIC’s curriculum spans the Old Testament and the New Testament, weaving together the tapestry of God’s grace in Jesus, revealed as early as Genesis. Hands-on, participatory types of lesson demos are used to engage all ages. The children are led through Scripture memory as they learn God’s Word together. Following this, Child leaders lead in worship and prayer. Sometimes the prayer sessions are the most stirring, as children pour out prayer requests and see many miraculous answers to prayer occur. Many parents of these children have received Jesus Christ through these passionate prayers of their children.

Trainings

For Child Trainings, CIC offers a wide range of ways to further disciple children and help them grow into Servant Leaders who follow Jesus in their public and private lives. These trainings include: 5-Day Child Leadership Camps, Life Skills Trainings (Peer-Led), Peer-to-Peer Discipling Training, Children in Prayer, and others. CIC also hosts special child events.

The Opportunity

Despite having trained more than 3,655 child leaders across 20 countries just this past year, we have had to turn away more than triple that number who have asked for training. Right now, children in Africa are hungry for hope and Truth. Would you like to join us in this vision? Indigenous local volunteers greatly sacrifice time and lost income to minister to these children as volunteers, but we can contribute by providing Bibles and Curriculum, transport for the children, and 5 days of food and lodging for kids. Prayerfully consider joining us!

The window of opportunity to make a real difference in these children’s lives and in Africa is open now. No one knows how long the window will be open. For Partnership Opportunities, find out how you can be part of this Mission here.

Children’s Testimonies

“I pray that each of you here feel what I am feeling right now. I am now overjoyed knowing that my Father in Heaven loves and cares so much about me”

Recently, in a CIC Club in Ghana, all the children were given an assignment to talk about the Father’s heart – a teaching about the love of our Heavenly Father. Bertha, whose father never accepted responsibility for her, shared from her heart. One of our CIC Club mentors recorded what happened that day in the middle of a hot, dusty African afternoon, as the club children settled down together after a time of worship and games to study God’s Word and share. “On this day the children were asked to share about the Father’s heart. Bertha J., whose father never accepted responsibility when the mother conceived her, has lived with this canker for years without knowing the father or knowing where he is, and all this while she has been waiting on the Lord to touch the father’s heart to come for her. It was Bertha’s turn to share, and when she opened her mouth, her tears began to fall and everybody was astonished as she spoke, ‘All this while I was looking for my father, I never knew He was with me. It worried me so much [but] He was with me  but I never knew Him. And I have been waiting, praying to see my father who doesn’t care about me, who does not even know how I feel,  but forgetting my Father in heaven who is always with me providing my needs all this while. But today knowing who I am and who my real Father is, I am telling you all, these are my last tears in this manner. I can now be close to my Father. I need to appreciate him instead of crying for someone who doesn’t care about me. I pray that each of you here feel what I am feeling right now. I am now overjoyed knowing that my Father in Heaven loves and cares so much about me. May the Lord open all your hearts to feel what I am feeling.’”

Bertha J., Upper West, GHANA

“Thanks to CIC vision and mission for us children to know God”

“I was born in 2001 to a family which had no Christian background, Before Christ came to my life I disobeyed my parents, and my friends and I would stone people at the roadside. One day I attended the CIC Club and they were reading from the book of John 14:6. I came to realize that there is only one way to go to God. So that made me think about the life I am living. I gave my life to Christ. All bad things in me have died and new life has come. Now I am a Child Leader in the CIC Club. Thanks to CIC’s vision and mission for us children to know God.”

John O., 13 years old, Torit, Eastern Equatorial State, SOUTH SUDAN

“This man in white kept rescuing me in my dreams, but I didn’t know who He was until I went to CIC Club”

“I was named after a [ancestral worship] shrine, which was believed to have special protective powers and gives those who worship it a long life. It is also believed to be powerful and deadly if you offend it. I was being prepared to be the Chief Priest and trained in all kinds of occultic powers, shrine worship, In this preparation I was always bathed with some concoction which had a very bad smell. It gave me powers to predict things that would happen but it also made children run away from me. Despite this, I was suffering in my dreams, I dreamed being chased by wild animals or being chased by masked demons. But in my dreams there was one strange man with a white garment who always would come to my rescue. And after rescuing me he would tell me He loves me so much. And He is waiting for me to come to him and after saying this, he would vanish. So all this while I was thinking and wondering where or when I could see this man. Until one day I had the opportunity to visit this CIC CLUB. As I came, I thought the children would run away as they always do from me. They did not, so I went closer to see what they were doing, And in this club they were talking about Jesus Christ and His love for us and how he want all to come to him. That day the Mentor spoke so much how Jesus loves and cares for us. So as I was there I kept on asking myself, ‘Who is this man they are talking about?’ With all these questions in my mind I did not have the courage to ask who that man was. And I went home and slept and had my usual dreams being chased by wild animals and suddenly this strange man appeared again and rescued me. And said, ‘Remember I love you and will always be there for you.’ I asked, ‘Who are you?’ And He said, ‘I am the man you heard of today. Go, they will show me to you.’ So I came to the CIC Club the following week and asked so many questions of Christ and they had the time to explain Him to me. I accepted Christ as my Lord and Savior right then. And now I don’t have bad dreams again and I now receive more love from my colleagues. They don’t run away if they see me coming. I am grateful to Christ for giving me this joy and peace. The part that affected me most is the lesson time. I really appreciate that part since that was when I had my salvation and freedom. I thank God for this.”

Mary K., 13 years old, Nadowli CIC CLUB, GHANA

“My whole life has changed since I heard that Jesus loves me and cares for me – I am so happy now”

“I came from a Muslim family, Fullah by tribe. I came to know about CIC when I enrolled in [a different] school two years ago. Every Wednesday we meet for CIC Club . . . . The first day I attended the club we were told a story about Adam and Eve which happens to be my best story even in the Quran. But this time when our teacher was telling us the story, this is the first time I deeply understood why God created man and I got to know who God is and His true love to mankind. . . .After this day I experienced peace, joy and happiness in my life. . . . I decided to join the child leaders group to be part of the praise team. Now I can sing Christian songs, pray in Jesus’ Name even for my parents without hesitation and also improved in my academic performance. Finally I decided to give my life to Jesus as my Lord and Savior. I experience peace anytime I read the Bible that was given to me by CIC. . . .my bible is always  in my bag even when going to school. I thank God for CIC for letting me know the true love of God.”

Aisha M., 12 years old, West Coast Region, THE GAMBIA

“I was broken and lost all hope”

“Before coming to the club I was a child without any life.  I do not live with my biological parents because of issues in my family. I was forced to do many things so that we could just eat. I had to work and  because of the work I did not have time to study.  I earned my dismissal from school for lack of results. This status affected me a lot because I had a dream of being a doctor. As this dream was broken then I lost all hope because for me life was worth not more punishment. One day I decided to go to the club CIC of my village. When I went there,  I really got the atmosphere was different. But they were talking to me about God while I’m hopeless. I told them, “You tell me about God as a real thing, a real Being. And that  nothing is impossible. If  your God can do anything then your God can change my situation.”  Right then they stopped everything and prayed for me and since that day my life has been transformed. It is hard to believe, but I returned to the school and now my dream to become a doctor is still possible because I am now studying again. I love all parts of the CIC club because they are the best moments for me.”

Clement K., 19 years old, Teunilee, BURKINA FASO

“And now hate has no place in my heart”

“I am Konate S., and I am 17 years old. I am now a pupil in 6th form in the school.  Right now  I want to express my gratitude to the Lord Jesus for having sent us CIC. I was born in a polygamous family and my mom is deceased even when I was young. No one supported me and I fought to win myself what I needed to survive. I suffered so that everyone was an evil villain to me.

I went to CIC Club when I was a child even though I am animist. Other ministries I had been involved in showed no positive change in my life at all. But then when I adhered to the CIC Club  teaching the word of God, I was told that “God loves me.” This little phrase will remain ever burning in me because of the love I have received.

When I agreed to confess Jesus as my personal Lord He fills my life with love and everything. And now hate has no place in my heart. My life is totally changed. I am very happy. Amen.”

Konate S., 17 years old, Bobo, BURKINA FASO

“I never heard God’s love for children before. And now my whole family knows Jesus”

“My name is Albert S., and I am 14 years old.  I want to give thanks to the Lord in bringing CIC in my village. I met the Lord Jesus through CIC CLUB. I had never heard of God’s love for men and especially for children. But through the teachings of the Word of God I received this love and Christ.  Before this I lived as if I did not know the truth. You know there is nothing more important than knowing that we are able to receive God freely through his Son Jesus and [what He did for us] and I pray all those who are still under the dominion of satan discover their freedom and walk in the light as I walk through this light. Now through my determination and my behavior change by the grace of God all my family have received Jesus as their LORD & SAVIOR. Now I  want to testify our gratitude to the Lord Jesus and also really to CIC to say thank you for the work that it is doing. God bless CIC.”

Albert S., 14 years old, Gueguer, BURKINA FASO

Every Child Reached, Mature, and Leading Others in Christ

CIC Web Editor’s Note: While photos are useful for our own internal reporting purposes and we receive photos & testimonies from the field monthly, we seek to limit photos on internet in order to protect children, pastors, and CIC volunteers and staff in the field.  Some names might also have been altered to protect those operating in challenging contexts. Please note that while CIC operates actively in 20 countries across Africa, some country testimonies are purposefully excluded from posting on the internet. If you seek specific information on specific countries, please contact us directly.