The Impact of a Lie
Throughout many of the poor, rural areas of Asia, churches are being planted and church leaders trained. But their communities remain in poverty. There is little difference in the lives of the believers and their communities before and after they come to Christ. Many Christians still live under a number of lies. They believe that God is not interested in their daily lives, that the future can’t change, and that they are helpless to make changes.
Believing that God only cares about spiritual things, they ignore health issues, food shortages, lack of education…. They don’t try to help themselves. They only see what they don’t have, but are blind to all that God has given them. They wait for someone to come and help them, believing the lie that they are helpless.
Yet the Bible says things should be different. Christ came to reconcile ALL things. Through Him, we should expect to see change. Relationships that were broken—with each other, with God, with creation and with ourselves—should start to be healed.
As churches learn and apply God’s truth, whole communities have moved out of poverty. Churches have grown as many have been drawn to Christ by witnessing His love and power. Communities have gone from not having enough food to selling their surplus. Children are attending school for the first time, and some have even received scholarships to university! Marriages are healed, health has improved, and thousands of Christians have fallen more in love with God as they have tried to walk in simple obedience to Him and have seen Him meet them in their efforts.
It’s an incredible story, more so when you consider that we only bring training, not financial or physical resources. But it’s also a testimony to the power of God and His truth to really transform lives. We have now worked with over 1000 churches and have seen this story repeated many times over.
The Truth Centered Transformation (TCT) program is actually incredibly simple. It’s made up of ten trainings that take place over five years. These trainings focus on teaching truth and basic life skills. We challenge churches to act on truth even before they fully believe it. As believers start to walk in obedience to God, the lies that have held them in poverty for generations are broken.
The first three trainings are focused exclusively on bringing truth to lies and on challenging churches to show God’s love to their community through simple Acts of Love. The next three trainings cover life skills such as health, money and family. The seventh training is a reminder of why we are doing all of this—to glorify God. Trainings eight and nine cover agriculture and evangelism. Number Ten reviews the previous five years.
Our trainers usually live near the churches and are of the same ethnic group as the church. They all work part-time and serve as pastors of churches when not working with us. These trainers regularly visit the churches to help them overcome challenges and to keep them focused on bringing glory to God.
Acts of Love
For the first eighteen months, the program challenges churches to start to express God’s love to their communities through what is called an Act of Love. These Acts of Love are simple projects that can be done using what they already have. They typically take only a day or two. Early Acts of Love are often things like working in a widow’s field, repairing or cleaning a water system, or making drainage ditches on a dirt road—things that require time rather than money. However, as they walk In obedience to God, they are often surprised how quickly they find they have the resources to do so much more. Within a year, many churches have moved on to do bigger projects such as road building and house construction.
God is expanding this work within Reconciled World, and beyond it too. We receive many requests from churches, organizations and program-leaders all over the world that have seen or heard about the incredible transformations happening. They want to implement TCT in their contexts. In response, we launched a website, www.tctprogram.org, with information and training materials from the program. God also opened doors for us to launch TCT in three new countries between 2011 and 2013.
Stories and Articles
I’ve just spent a month in Africa teaching the TCT program. One of the big things we look at during trainings are the beliefs that keep people locked in poverty. … Continue reading Fatalism
God is at work through the church. This video tells the story of an Act of Love from a community we work with in Asia. It’s an inspiring example of how their church … Continue reading Video: TCT Asia