Johan Meintjes has a heart for mission work, for taking the Gospel of Christ to the African nations. He has a heart for the poor, for encouraging economic development, and he has a heart for discovering and experiencing Africa.
He has a heart for walking by faith, for practically stepping out and relying on our Lord Jesus Christ for all his needs to take His Gospel and extend it to the poor, to the downtrodden, to the largely forgotten, to the lowly, to the humble.
Meintjes is venturing forth on a 4×4 Africa Peace and Development Expedition from Cape Town to Kisangani, a 10 000 kilometre trip from the August 18 to September 21, 2014.
“I am trying to open-up a north-south road through the centre of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), specifically to the Congo River, in both the spiritual and material realms”.
“I have an economic development purpose and a Kingdom mission purpose to encourage, to enthuse and to spread the Gospel,” says Meintjes.
He says while socio-economic challenges also surround us in South Africa, it is up to the Body of Christ to extend relevant and timely faith-based solutions forged on solid rock foundations, and a lasting morality of scripture ethics to encourage local and contextual economic initiatives in the SADC region.
Meintjes asks: “How does one effectively stimulate sustainable economic development to the bottom billion people in Africa”?
As an answer he says: “practical face-to-face encouragement and effort from the bottom up might be a good start”.
And then the pioneering missionary in him comes out.
“With experience in Antarctica, having sailed around South America in a four mast sailing ship, having survived a shipping and aircraft disaster, having done outreach work along the full navigable length of the Congo River, and having climbed the rock face under the cable-car station on Table Mountain; it is my determined and faith-based focus to use my previous experience of promoting Southern African ground level economic development to extend Christ awareness.
“Whatever the world economic and political scenario, Africa – as the last continent open to development – needs to be addressed at the lower, grassroots levels, very urgently,” says Meintjes.
He invites independently cooperative Christian businesses to participate by means of active partnering in accompaniment or to advertise on vehicles, so as to develop friendships and networks, as well as participate in edifying inter-actions on the way forward and through the many challenges.
Meintjes says while the Christian church increasingly comes under pressure and seemingly faints in the face of the many challenges of our day, the time is ideal for an awakening and sowing good seed among the tares towards Christ discipleship as well as ethical and sustainable development in Africa.
“A passive Church in these times cannot change the world or impact society,” says Meintjes,
“Faith-based mission work is all about prayer and faith. You do everything according to your experience and plans then it is a matter of prayer. And sometimes, in your preparation the Lord decides to use you for something else,” he adds.
Christian businessmen are invited and encouraged to pray for the following:
· The purposed approach for spreading practical Good News and goodwill into Southern-Africa;
· Meaningful partners, participation, encounters and objectives; and
· Determination, health, protection, Christian values and fruit.
This Christian outreach and business development journey is planned from Cape Town via Pretoria, Victoria Falls, Livingstone, Mpulungu, Lake Tanganyika, Bujumbura to Kisangani.
The turn-around point is the Kisangani municipal offices in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).
The one-way distance is 5 000 km; 12 days are planned for the forward journey and 12 days back as part of the five week development programme. However, the ship-borne passage along Lake Tanganyika might cause delays.
Accommodation will be facilitated by local churches and congregations, with mutual blessing.
“Follow-up or further interactions will be possible on the way back as we continue to pray for providence, guidance, protection and fruit that lasts,” says Meintjes.
“My aim is to come back with a network to follow-up on; particularly a network of local small business entrepreneurs.”
He envisages a 10-day stay in Kisangani, to interact constructively on as many levels and spheres as possible in the providence of a servant attitude spreading the Gospel of Christ, participating in community development work with a basic commitment to economic development.
A soccer tournament is envisaged as a tool for outreach in Kisangani, during inter-action with churches and secular society.
“This is a Christian initiative, open to sincere agents for honest and sustainable local economic development in Southern Africa,” says Meintjies.
He invites any interested parties to contact him at e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 082 443 5685.