MARVELLER & STEWARD OF GOD'S CREATION
Staff Story: Matthew Burnett
"If I can't walk outside for the day then I am in the wrong line of work."
Put on your good walking shoes, a hat, and grab your binoculars! If you're visiting Matthew Burnett, of TWR West Africa, you'll need to be ready to spend lots of time outdoors!
Meet Matthew Burnett. He may have grown up with missionary parents, but isn't your typical missionary. Matthew is active, practical and loves the outdoors. He is a short term (one year) missionary serving at the TWR transmitter station in West Africa. He began his mission in January 2013 and will be there until the end of 2013.
Matthew wanted to serve Christ since he was a young boy and has a passion for nature conservation and all of God's creation. His boundless love for the outdoors and experiencing the full beauty of what God has created has drawn him to follow a calling of taking care of what God has given man. Matthew's life motto is taken from Job 12:7-10, "But ask the animals, and they will teach you..."
How – you may ask – is he using his passion for the outdoors to serve with TWR – a radio organization?
The TWR transmitter site has a tree planting project as well as a small reserve. Matthew has been helping to plant trees and develop the area around the dam so that local pastors and other missionaries can enjoy marveling and reflect on God's creation. He has also helped the team to plant maize for the local village and has assisted the community to develop and improve their farming techniques.
Matthew, born and raised in South Africa, says the most important thing is that he committed his life to Christ in the 1980's, and since then he has prayed that he would be a testimony for Christ to others. Brought up by missionary parents, he has been searching throughout his youth for the best way to serve Christ through his passion for God's creation. This passion is what led him to work for TWR in West Africa.
One of Matthew's greatest challenges was arriving there with no understanding of the local language. The realisation that he could be of little assistance in spreading the Gospel and communicating it to the local population inspired him to learn the language. Learning the local language is helping Matthew to spread the Gospel and instill stewardship principles in the hearts of the people.
Matthew would appreciate prayers for the remainder of his time in West Africa so that he would effectively spread the Gospel, find favour with the people there, and leave a lasting impact for the Kingdom of God.