November 19, 2002
SPRINGFIELD — Yes, Lord! Yes, Lord! …
Amy Jennings, a senior math major at Hannibal LaGrange College, says she can still hear those words ringing in her ears. Words that were uttered by a Muslim boy in Uganda last summer after hearing Amy’s story about how Jesus plus nothing equals everything.
Amy is representative of a growing number of Missouri Baptist college students who have a growing desire to tell others about Christ. Servant evangelism ideas are cropping up at Baptist Student Unions across the state, while students at Southwest Baptist and Hannibal LaGrange are volunteering for semester break and summer mission trips.
For Amy, mission work isn’t something new. Her dad works for the North American Mission Board. Miss Jennings says she has gone on at least four mission trips that she can remember, dating all the way back to her sophomore year in high school.
But there was something special about the most recent trip – the three-week journey to the African country last summer.
"They (Awe-Star Ministries of Tulsa) asked me to be a team leader," Miss Jennings says. "There are two Southern Baptist missionary teams in this area of Moroto, Uganda, and we were the first group to go and help them."
There wasn’t much unusual about the Ugandan trip. Not at first, at least. Huge mountains, according to Amy, surrounded the area where they were located. The young missionaries’ day consisted of a long hike up a mountainside, doing what they could to minister to the residents of villages. Extreme heat usually forced them back down the mountain in the afternoon.
After about two weeks, missionaries had made arrangements for Amy to go into an English-speaking school to share some of her math knowledge with the students.
"There were about 200 students in the class," she told messengers gathered at the 2002 annual meeting of the Missouri Baptist Convention. "Language was not a problem because English was their second language, but some of the math symbols were a little different. The second day they asked me to come back and talk to a different class, so I went.
"The first 45 minutes I just taught. When I looked around I saw that the principal and teacher were both gone. I heard God telling me to put the chalk down, and I did. That’s when I began telling them that I had brought a special math equation all the way from America. I wrote the equation on the board:
"Jesus + Nothing = Everything.
"After about an hour of sharing, I felt somebody grab my arm, so I stopped," Amy said. It was a young Ugandan boy sitting on the front row.
"I shared with him the verse out of Isaiah which says: ‘Yes, Lord I will walk in your ways.’ I told the whole class that if anybody wanted to follow the Lord, that on the count of three to jump and yell ‘Yes, Lord’ as loud as they could. I started counting and before I could say two, the boy on the front row jumped up and yelled "yes, Lord!"
"Before I could start counting again, about 10 others jumped up and yelled the same thing."
Others in the class told me they were already a Christian, but they wanted to know if they could jump up and yell the same thing," explained a beaming Miss Jennings, thinking back to that afternoon in Uganda.
MBC messengers were spellbound as they listened to Amy’s testimony. Time limitations prevented her from telling the "rest of the story," which she shared afterwards with The Pathway.
"The boy came up to me after the class and told me that I had no idea what it meant for him to jump up and say ‘yes, Lord,’" Amy explained. "He told me that he was a Muslim and would lose everything. He said he would have no food, no shelter and his picture in photos would be cut out of family photos. But he told me that he just had to have this love that I was talking about."
And there’s still more to the story. It goes back several days before Amy shared the "formula" with the class.
"We were doing a prayer walk around Moroto and came across the ‘Bauma Grounds,’" Amy explained. "It was just a dirt field with two soccer goals. We learned later that it was a gathering place for the people of Moroto. The day we were prayer walking we felt led to stop, get down on our face in the dirt and pray for Moroto. It was amazing. When we opened our eyes, God had gathered a lot of the town people around us."
"The Muslim boy told me that he had seen us three weeks earlier at the Bauma Grounds," Amy said. "He said he knew we served a different God than his god because of the way we were praying and praising God. He shared that he was absolutely enthralled with our consistency to share the Gospel. He saw us worship, praise God and that was what he was drawn to."
Amy believes the success of her mission trip was the result of missionaries doing so much work before they arrived.
"My senior year in high school is when I really got passionate about mission work," she explains. "The environment at Hannibal-LaGrange has really been an encouragement to me. I have some incredible brothers and sisters in Christ there. I really believe God is breaking out a revival on that campus."