Stories from Beyond the Well: The Fall of the Spirit Tree

Need to catch up on the Water of Life story? Read The Prologue, Chapter 1, and Chapter 2.

God Working in Sierra Leone

People said I could not plant a church in Kychom. There was no church here. There had never been a church here. And there would never be a church here. But I knew better. I knew God was on my side, and God wanted me to go and make disciples of Jesus Christ in this village.

So I went. The church started out very small. We only had 7 or 8 believers studying and worshiping with us regularly. But then Water of Life came alongside my church planting efforts. They came to drill water wells, and in doing so, they came proclaiming the love of Jesus.

Together, we drilled several wells in Kychom. We even drilled one in front of the town mosque. The imams of course did not wish for us to put a well displaying it was a gift from Jesus in front of their mosque, but the villagers did not care. They needed clean water. They told the imams the well, even with its sign reading “A Gift from Jesus Christ,” stays.

With the aid of the water wells, the Christian church continued to grow in Kychom. It grew so fast that I couldn’t keep up. I began training pastors to start their own congregations to continue God’s work of making disciples of Christ. These new Christians locked onto prayer with steadfastness. They saw how God was working in their lives, and they wanted that for those surrounding them.

The Fall of The Spirit Tree

In this same village stood an ancient tree. This massive tree had become a place of connection to the spirit world. From far and wide, people would travel to worship this tree and connect with the spirit world. One night, following a heavy rain, this massive tree just fell over. It was dead. Everyone in the village started talking. What does this mean? Is
the spirit world gone? And what does this have to do with these new churches and new Christians that are showing up all around me?

I knew what it meant. I know that God will stop at nothing to bring His lost sheep back into the flock. And I know that sometimes the Holy Spirit just has to grab your attention. That’s what the spirit tree falling did. God certainly had the people of Kychom’s attention then. And from there, the church has spread and grown deep roots in this community. Now, Kychom has a faith that cannot be moved.

-Alphonso Barry

Want to read more? Check out Chapter 4, Chapter 5, and Chapter 6.

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