For those who have not heard, allow me to update you on the news in South Sudan. What has been called a failed coup attempt has resulted in military clashes in the capital (relatively distant from my current location), and the clashes are beginning to spread into other regions. The clashes have resulted from infighting among factions of the South Sudanese army. The death toll exceeded 500 yesterday, including many civilians. Several countries are beginning evacuation procedures for all of their citizens. The US embassy has told us to "depart immediately."
This morning, I am waiting to make an important phone call--and praying. I need to make a final confirmation that my scheduled flight to leave Yei will indeed be departing as scheduled. MAF, an international aviation association, is handling the flight, and they have assured me that the plan is to pick me up in Yei according to the original booking. But they also wanted me to call to confirm this morning.
I am in a city several hours' drive from the unrest and have seen no significant disruption of normal life—except that everyone is hanging around TVs and radios listening for news. The class went smoothly, and the students were attentive. Some of the church leaders in the class had never had an opportunity to thoughtfully consider several of the core ideas of the book. I am thankful to God for the awesome privilige to open up these powerful words of God and watch his Spirit work through those words in the hearts of these men. I left them yesterday with this prayer:
"Now to him who is able to establish you in accordance with my gospel, the message I proclaim about Jesus Christ, in keeping with the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all the Gentiles might come to the obedience that comes from faith—to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen" (Rom 16:25-27).
Please pray for peace in this already war-torn country, pray for the progress of the gospel, especially through the dear men and women I have had the opportunity to teach this week, and pray that my scheduled flights back to home and family in Nairobi, Kenya, will not be hindered.