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Making Movies with God in Africa

Steve B. is the leader of Create Mobile. This was originally published May 10, 2022. Article reposted with permission from https://createinternational.com.

Making movies with God is amazing, because He answers our prayers for our productions. I firmly believe that God the Father loves to make movies about His Son Jesus and helps us to overcome every obstacle to make these films which are written and recorded in the local language and cultural context.

Oral cultures tend to learn and communicate through storytelling. In this way, audio/visual resources in their heart language are strategic for sharing the hope of Christ. Our film projects are always made in partnership with local believers, church planters, and missionaries in the field.

Training in Togo

In addition to producing media the Create International Mobile production and training team runs an on-location film school to teach ministry workers in other countries how to produce their own content. Recently we returned to live, in-person training after the pandemic hiatus and ran the Frontier Filmmaking Seminar in Togo, West Africa at YWAM Noepe.

We had our largest class ever with sixteen students, most of whom were able to complete the program. These students will go on to produce media for various ministries around the world. It’s exciting to see where God calls each one. In this video, you can see testimonies from students who went through our film training in Togo.

The program’s practical outcome was a Gospel film for the Tem people of West Africa, often referred to as the Kotokoli. That film is now currently in post-production. The project was not without its challenges, including the fact that I, the film director, had contracted Covid-19 a week before I was supposed to board a plane for Togo. By God’s grace I tested negative the night before my flight and arrived on time for the seminar kick-off.

We overcame:

  • Covid-19, hives, ear infections, malaria, and the common cold

  • Lost luggage

  • Long hot days

  • Lengthy van rides without AC or sometimes even open windows

  • Vans breaking down more than once

  • Tricky night shooting

  • Fatigue

  • Production delays like late meal arrivals to confound a carefully made schedule

  • Language barriers every day

  • The dreaded poor Internet access problem

  • And the usual dietary and gastrointestinal challenges.

Nevertheless, I can remember one morning leaving my room with great joy in my heart to be in Togo making this particular movie with my friends both new and old. We make these movies for God’s glory and to glorify His son Jesus. His Spirit was present to us in powerful ways. During the shooting of an African-style worship scene under a tree some of our teammates, including me, were overwhelmed with God’s presence and gratitude to be making this movie with our very gracious local cast and crew.

“We make these movies for God’s glory and to glorify His son Jesus.”

Before we left I shared a rough cut of the movie with our cultural advisor. He got a little emotional in the right places, and laughed in the right spots. When it was finished he said it was “correct” and “a good movie” with a big smile on his face. We stopped and gave thanks to God for seeing us through this process. We hope to finish post production and release “I See Red” later this year, Lord willing.

These projects are often as much of a spiritual battle as they are a physical and mental endurance test. We rely on prayer support from people literally all over the world serving a crucial position remotely on our big evangelistic film team! You can learn more about our upcoming training programs and projects at www.createmobile.org.

- Steve B.

Original post: https://createinternational.com/making-movies-with-god-in-africa/

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