October 8th 2017
As I arrived at the meeting place of Living Hope Church, Bath, one of the Regions Beyond churches in the Newfrontiers family, I received a WhatsApp message from Donna Bloomfield in Burundi.

“Yesterday we discovered that ‘army worm’, a devastating pest, has ravaged a maize crop grown by Albert, our newest team member. This pest has destroyed his whole crop .… and is already destroying crops across Africa. It is on the site next to the community of displaced people we are helping. It seems we therefore can’t plant maize with them as planned. We have prophetic words about fruitful farmlands and no more starvation … so we are on our knees seeking God for a way forward not just for us but for the nation. We are meeting this afternoon to pray and the whole team will meet tomorrow before we have to break the news to our friends. May God give us wisdom and a strategy right from his heart”.

God’s whisper
Earlier I had felt God whisper into my heart to share on prayer that morning. What an opportunity this presented for us, as a church, to stand with these dear people who were living in abject poverty and put prayer into practice!

While praying God led us to two scriptures:

I will rebuke the devourer for you, so that it will not destroy the fruits of your soil, and your vine in the field shall not fail to bear, says the LORD of hosts. Malachi 3:11

Now there was a famine in the land, besides the former famine that was in the days of Abraham….. And Isaac sowed in that land and reaped in the same year a hundredfold. Gen 26:1, 12 

I shared these with Donna. The following day she responded that these scriptures had been hugely significant. “God led us so clearly today that we are to proceed and plant the maize as planned, trusting God that it won’t be devoured”. She explained that the team had felt God had spoken to them and asked them, “What does success look like?” and that it was actually to serve the nation in finding a way to overcome the pest that could otherwise cause starvation across the nation by devouring the staple crop.

They decided to go ahead as planned using the Foundations for Farming technique (originally called Farming God’s Way) developed by Brian Oldreive in Zimbabwe and taught to the Burundians by Mike and Annette Derry from the UK, who had themselves been trained in Zimbabwe.

That afternoon the team received a message from a member of the Foundations Team in Zimbabwe that washing up liquid, watered down and sprayed on the crops should kill the army worm. They went straight to Albert’s plot to test it and it worked!

Now they could also serve their neighbours by showing them this method to save their crops.

Let me tell the rest of the story in pictures.

October 10th
The next day planting begins.








October 26th – 16 days later








December 6th – a further 6 weeks
Faithful and diligent labour produces stands higher than the people! Some seeds have grown multiple stalks – previously unknown to the originators of Foundations for Farming.






January 30th 2018 – Another 8 weeks
Faithfulness produces abundance, with several stalks producing 3 cobs, but all significantly more substantial than those grown by conventional methods. The next field was planted a few days earlier according to traditional farming methods. Neighbours are now asking to be taught the new method.

God’s way                                                  Man’s way

February 2nd
Time for harvest










Lessons to learn
1. God delights to answer prayer
2. God honours faithfulness and diligence
3. God blesses those who are poor and downtrodden

Give us this day our daily bread….

Thank you Jesus!

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