101. Ian Kristofer – Unreached in Mozambique #2

We continue our conversation with Ian Kristofer in Mozambique. In this episode we hear about what Ian has been learning as he sees movement take off around him in various unreached contexts of Mozambique. 

Reaching the Shona

“We disciple in everything”

During the forming stage of seeing movement amongst the Shona people in central Mozambique, Ian shares how God refined him to make disciple that would make disciples. He encourages us to remember the ‘MAWL’ (Model, Assist, Watch and Leave) method to disciple people in any context and situation God has placed us.

Through engaging with Vida (‘Life’), a local person of peace, Ian learned to share and obey Jesus whilst also helping this 18 year old discover how to do the same. From this young man, we hear of a movement being birthed through people discovering, encountering and sharing Jesus. 

Engaging the Makua

Ian tells us the story of being invited into a Makua village after moving to northern Mozambique. After sharing God’s word through a discovery process, Ian saw this initial group grow rapidly. However it suddenly diminished due to the men who had originally welcomed Ian into their community. 

“The person of influence isn’t always good influence”

Ian tells us how an initial person of peace is not always the person who is going to spread the gospel. Instead they might simply be the ‘door opener’ into a community. However the harvest is ripe beyond this individual. 

“Even though a person of peace is someone of influence who is willing to receive from you and share God’s word, they aren’t always the ones who will keep sharing or have good influence.” 

Despite the drop off, after discipling the chief of a Makua village a number of DBS groups formed. Inside Makua leaders were even moved by God to start radically reaching out to the Yao people where movement has taken off.

Movement amongst the Yao

Ian shares with us the story of how he and his wife Carla saw a church birthed through discipling two Yao people of peace who each had encounters Jesus. We listen to Ian tell us how the gospel spread rapidly through these two people’s encounters with Jesus. Within two years, up to 1000 people had been baptised and 50 groups were multiplying down to a fifth generation in some cases. The challenge these days is to source enough audio bibles to keep up with the growth!

“We can’t and shouldn’t control a movement – instead catalysing corporate prayer is key”

Ian describes how he is catalysing prayer groups through a 4 week prayer rhythm. We hear how we meets for an hour, once a week with some of his key Yao inside leaders. Ian shows them how to pray in four ways – gratefully, transparently, prophetically and with harvest focused intercession. Then after four weeks he empowers someone else in the group to be the host for the next four weeks. This monthly prayer rhythm is allowing Ian to reluctantly yet slowly step away from the group as he seeks to ‘MAWL’, this time in prayer. 

“We can’t and shouldn’t control a movement – instead quick delegation of leadership is key” 

Ian shares how as movement catalysts, we need to be empowering those who are obeying God. These are those who are already operating as elders in these new churches. For example, he tells shares now God is currently speaking to Yao inside leaders about seeing healthier marriages in their own context. 

Prayers and words of encouragement

Amongst the background sounds of seeds falling on Ian’s roof, Ian finishes by praying for us the listener from the parable of the sower. Asking God to help us have the love, courage and obedience to walk through through all the four soils. 

He shares a word for those of us in distant lands asking the question, “Father is this possible?”. In reply, Jesus’ words, “Greater works than mine you will do” (John 14:12) and “Tarry…until you have been clothed with power from on high” (Luke 24:49) are God’s response. 

He encourages us to pray, “Father let us do the work that you are doing and say the things that you are saying today.” He asks God to push back the gates of hell in our midst and let multiplication come the way God sees it.

A reminder of how to access Ian Kristoffer’s book, ‘Making disciples and leading others to make them’ here