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Tuesday February 4, 2020

St. Matthews Anglican Church
Chinhoyi, Zimbabwe
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GPS/DMS 17° 21′ 55.1”S 30°11′37.0”E

Additional Photos After Testimony
Cyber Daily Devotion

Volume 21 Number 052

Today’s Author: Pastor Bill

Scripture: Philippians 3:13
“Brothers and sisters, I know that I have not yet reached that goal, but there is one thing I always do. Forgetting the past and straining toward what is ahead” NCV (Bible Paraphrase) 

Hello, my name is Father Lawrence Gandia from St Matthews Anglican Church in Chinhoyi, Zimbabwe. I was the oldest of five kids. My dad and brother died in the Zimbabwe Cholera Outbreak of 2008. Mom raised us the best she could. 

We were a church family and had support of the church community through the deaths of my dad and brother. I was chosen to be an altar boy learning the ways of the Anglican church. From my start I was told I would make the perfect Priest. Something I spent a great deal of time running from. 

When I was 16 years old I joined a Charismatic Church. It was different. They taught me how to pray in ways I had never experienced. I found joy and fulfillment in my prayers which had eluded me all my life. 

After a period, I returned to the Anglican Church. I was changed, a different man. God was just getting started with me. People were excited to see me back at church and everyone was once again encouraging me to be a Priest. 

I decided to take a bookkeeping job for a beer and liquor distributor. Initially I was doing well and had plenty of time to spend at church and Bible studies. But as my responsibilities increased I found myself working 7 days a week and late into the nights. 

I no longer had time for church things. My spiritual side was shriveling up. The Holy Spirit was not happy. Therefore, I was not happy. I quit my job and signed up for schooling to be a Priest. Everyone was elated. 

The acceptance process dragged on a bit too long. When I told people what I was doing naysayers told me all the reasons I should not do it. Fear overcame me, and I backed out. My Bishop, Priest and others were devastated. It was back to work for me. 

One year later I re-applied and told no one. This time I was quickly accepted and began my studies immediately. It was 1996-1998. I met the daughter of one of my South African professors. Her name was Masechaba. I graduated in 1998 being sent for a year to be a Deacon. 

Two years later right on my timetable, in 2000, I was appointed to lead a new church stand in the suburbs of Harare, Zimbabwe. The church was St. Columbus. Masechaba and I were married here, and we served here. 

It was now time to put into practice praying for people. The church became very popular and grew to be one of the largest Anglican Churches in the Harare area. Our youth program was exploding and there was much life in the church. 

Then as happens with Anglican churches it was time for me to move on to another church. This time we moved to St. Paul’s Church in Molepolole, Botswana. Here we learned to battle demons firsthand. Once a month we would meet those who wanted deliverance. 

Most of the congregation was raised under the witch doctor spirits of what is called Traditional Religion. Ancestor worship is the backbone of Traditional Religion which is the highway evil spirits use to take control in people’s lives. 

One by one we set the congregation free from drugs, alcohol, epilepsy, cancer, sightlessness and on and on. This and daily prayer became the outreach that filled our church to overflowing. 

2010 was time to move on into our next church. This was St. Andrews in Silibe Phikwe, Botswana. Here we added International contacts to help us reach people. We continued with prayer and deliverance ministry and added contact with Anglican Churches from America. They sent teams into our city to build, clean, teach and minister. Our church expanded quickly as the Lord was touching hearts and changing lives. 

2018 we moved on to our current Church St. Matthews here in Chinhoyi, Zimbabwe. Here the Lord added another dimension to our ministry — College students. We have so much to offer them for the Lord. How to pray, how to be set free from ancestral bondages and International connections. 

They are hungry to learn about the Lord and our services overflow with students. And because the Lord loves everyone, just beyond our backyard is a large Zimbabwe Prison. Here we minister the love of Jesus in ways they have never experienced. 

Preaching and Teaching about Jesus is what I like to do. The Lord has blessed me with a gift to bring Jesus alive making Him practical in people’s lives. It is such a joy when they “get it” “understand it” and “apply it” — they meet Jesus in their lives. 

Prayer: Father thank you for the Preachers and Teachers you place in pulpits that challenge people to change their lives and Move On with Jesus. In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen! 

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