My Upcoming Mission to Tanzania

September 12, 2023

tims blog







Dear friends of WTWH,

Usually I wait until the last minute to inform you of any upcoming mission, or like last time, not at all (which was a huge oversight on my part). But I want to remedy my error by telling you now about a trip I have coming up later this month to Matebete Village in Tanzania, East Africa. I am scheduled to fly out of Baton Rouge on Sunday 24 September, and to return on Wednesday 4 October.

Since my first mission there in 2004, I have made 38 trips to Africa (20 to Tanzania, 9 to Uganda, 8 to Kenya and 1 to Rwanda). Throughout all these years and trips, I have taught the same subjects several times, endeavoring each time to further trim away the excess fat of my words in order to present the meat of the Word; more of Thee and less of me. In the end, it is only the Holy Spirit who can enlighten man’s understanding. This he does both instantaneously and silently. My part, I believe, is to leave him room to speak. That is why I think I am a more effective teacher when I am working with a translator. I must communicate the same things in half the time with half the words because everything must be said twice. Humorous anecdotes and interesting-but-unnecessary information must be weeded out. I think of it as painting a picture using only primary colors.

To be honest, the idea of getting on another plane is not very appealing to me. International travel is exhausting. You wouldn’t think that just sitting in a plane would be tiring, but it is. Changing so many time zones upends my body clock. When it’s time to teach, my body wants to sleep. When it’s time to sleep, my body wants to eat. It takes a full day to adjust to every time zone you cross, and East Africa is eight hours ahead of where I live. By the time my body adjusts, it will be time to leave. The interior land travel is no piece of cake either. Every vehicle is inevitably stuffed to the brim. But all of this discouragement melts away when I arrive in Matebete and see all my old friends.

I will be revisiting a favorite topic of mine, The Prosperity of the Lord’s Servant. I can’t think of a time when these truths were more necessary to implant into our hearts and minds. Christians everywhere need to be convinced that God will provide for them no matter what is going on in the world. It doesn’t take much insight to recognize that for us Christians, we are in the darkest hours that precede the dawn. Psalm 11:3 asks, “If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?” and every day we see fundamental truths being razed in favor of incredulous fiction. The “new normal” is not normal at all. And yet the Lord’s promise in Malachi continues to ring true:

Malachi 3:10-11
10: Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
11: And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes, and he shall not destroy the fruits of your ground; neither shall your vine cast her fruit before the time in the field, saith the LORD of hosts.

Sadly, God hears the same backtalk now that he did so long ago: “Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept his ordinance” (Mal. 3:14). People bristle at the idea that God would ask something of them that requires actual faith. They seek a bestowment and not a covenant. They accuse his messengers of speaking behind “a cloke of covetousness” (1 Thes. 2:5) in order to justify their own covetousness. But it is all part of the job. I have lost more supporters than I’ve gained by preaching from Malachi, but I won’t stop preaching it. I preach what I practice, and I, for one, know that I need God to “rebuke the devourer” for my sake. I don’t have so much stored away that I can afford to lose it to the locusts!

And so, I am traveling to a poor country to speak to poor Christians about the kind of continual prosperity only God can bring. The people of Matebete have spread the word, and we will be joined by about forty church leaders from the Mbeya region who oversee congregations of the Lutheran Church, Assemblies of God, Moravian, Baptist, Church of Christ, and the Efatha Church. The conference itself will last only two days, leaving time for fellowship and other organizational meetings.

The expense of such an undertaking is considerable, but as Jesus said, “For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it? (Luke 14:28). Thanks to God and a few kind people who include WTWH in their donations, there is enough in the storehouse for me to make this trip. I write this letter only to solicit your prayers for my journey to and from Africa, and for the success of my mission. All signs indicate that we are on the brink of another lockdown, and I am prayerful that this door of utterance and window of opportunity will remain open long enough to complete this mission. Of course, getting there is only the first part of the task. I want this time, money, and effort to be well-invested. I want the Maasai to come away better equipped to face the many challenges life presents them. And so, I ask you to join me in “Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God” (Rom. 1:10).

If you would like to make a donation to the poor churches of Tanzania, I will be happy to act as a “middle man” and remove the worry of someone lining their pockets along the way. If you are so inclined, please be specific about where you want your gift to go. As Proverbs 19:17 says, “He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.” I am certain that fruit will “abound to your account” (Phil. 4:17).

God bless you, and thank you for including me in your prayers and life.

In the Service of His Majesty, the King of kings,
Tim Sullivan


Comments? Email Tim HERE


Index to Tim's Blog