Melias is a Malagasy missionary who works with Karin Mende in Madagascar. He tells us his testimony of how he became a Christian and how God gave him a vision for mission, to tell other Malagsy the gospel.
I became a Christian in 2013 when I was 21. The Holy Spirit convinced my heart that the Bible is true. I found new joy and excitement learning about Jesus through the Scriptures. Since then, God has been calling me by his great mercy and love, and he has given me a vision for mission. This has occupied a big place in my heart, and I sense that God has a purpose for me.
What is being done?
One day, our pastor taught us the story of the good news coming to Madagascar in 1818. I was shocked and surprised. It’s been over 200 years since the good news was first preached here. I found myself asking the question, “Why have so many Malagasy people and places not heard the good news yet? What are the church and the Christian community doing about this?”
Often, when I go to different villages, my heart is broken to see people with no knowledge of who God really is. For them, God is a distant creator, but not one with whom you can have a personal relationship with. Instead, they rely on ancestor worship and witchcraft. I have often shared my personal testimony, but in the beginning, I did not have enough understanding of the Bible to teach in depth. Despite this, I felt the Holy Spirit speaking to me through the Great Commission in Matthew 28 to bring the good news to the ends of the earth.
Learning about mission
In 2015 I heard about a 6 months mission training course in Antananarivo in collaboration with AIM. I immediately left my job as a construction engineer because I was determined to learn about mission. At first my family thought I was crazy. The training helped me to understand the Bible and missions more. In particular, the ‘Discovery Bible Study’ really opened my eyes to the fact that though the harvest is ripe, the labourers are few. Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to serve God by planting churches and discipling many new believers in Ikongo among the Tanala and in NosyBe among the Sakalava. This year I am also involved in missionary training of three new Malagasy missionaries in the Sakalava area. I feel blessed to be used by God to spread his kingdom here in Madagascar.