We are David and Rhonda Ochoa joined by three of our five precious children and are returning to Africa to serve the families and churches in facilitating discipleship to the next generation among the Langi people in Northern Uganda.
God gave David and I a love and burden for children individually as singles and we continued that through courting and into marriage. We have a burden to invest in children, by discipling parents and pastors, rooting them deeply in the word of God and who they are in Christ, as well as who Christ is in and to them. God made little people with incredible openness while they are young. A few years ago George Barna conducted a research on children and parenting in the church and later wrote Revolutionary Parenting based on his study. Barna termed the name “spiritual champions”. (I don’t favor the term, yet agree with the concept. I prefer: Life-long Believers, Overcomers, Victorious Ones, Surrendered Ones. . .) You can draw many conclusions from this study, but here is what I surmised:
~Children were made by an amazing God who created them open, curious, and hungry to learn.
~God made them imitators, so whatever we put before them needs to be worth imitating, including ourselves.
~Children are relational and need our time.
~The word of God is incredibly powerful to hide in the heart of a child and will reap great reward.
~Parents need their church to partner with them to help them reach their goal of raising children that have a life-long love for God.
~Dependence on God in prayer is essential in reaching our children for Christ.
~Churches most important role might just be to minister to the parents to love their own children and pass down the living, wondrous, ONE-true God to the next generation from within their homes.
~We only have a few years with our children and then they are grown and have their beliefs established. Make every moment count while they are young and impressionable and looking to you to form their ways.
Parenting is a powerful role, one we cannot afford to take lightly. It is our responsibility and wonderful privilege to pass on God and relationships and love and grace and favor to our little ones looking up at us learning from our every move, word, and action. Our longing is to work within God’s framework of reaching to the heart of a child and to see them loved deeply by their own parents as we disciple the moms and dads in the truth of who God is, what they are made for, and how to pass God on to them. As God opens doors, we pray will can do this in the context of the Langi people in Lira, Uganda.