Peter said to him “You shall never wash my feet”. Jesus answered, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with me.” “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head” (John 13:8-9).
In the above passage, Peter most likely resisted out of respect for Jesus. Essentially, however, he did so because he did not understand the implication of what Jesus was doing. When he understood, he then wanted Jesus not only to wash his feet but his hands and head as well. Full and appropriate participation requires a full understanding of what is involved.
With this, Edify believes Christ-centered holistic transformation requires full understanding of all of the inputs involved. I will now try to clarify the concept of transformation and how it occurs in Edify’s ministry, as we attempt to live this out and effectively facilitate this Christ-centered holistic transformation.
“I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean…. Moreover, I will give you a new heart…. I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh, and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezekiel 36:24-26)
Transformation is basically a revolution of the heart, an internal government. It is about the overthrowing of the old, godless-heart government that is ruling in us and establishing a new heart that is rooted in the values and principles of Jesus.
- God looks at the heart and not at our outward appearances (1 Samuel 16:7)
- As we think in our hearts so are we (Proverbs 23:7) – as a shepherd ……
- Out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies (Matt 15:19)
This is the difference between a Christ-centered revolution and secular revolutions. Secular revolutions are about external transformation: Waging class struggles to overthrow the government of one class and replacing it by a government of another class. It doesn’t do an internal surgery replacing the heart of stone by a heart of flesh. The revolution is external and ungodly. It is about changing political, economic and social structures in human ways and hence doomed to fail.
A Christ-centered revolution is waged internally within each person and results in internal transformation that in turn bring the external changes. This internal transformation causes human life to flourish under the ordinances of God on earth and eternal life in heaven. It marks a new birth for life on earth and in heaven.
The mother of this new heart or new-birth is the acceptance of Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior followed by Christ-centered spiritual transformation deepened by the renewing of the mind.
How does this present itself in the Edify ministry? When secular revolutionaries prepare for power struggle, they go to the mountains, forests and deserts that are difficult to reach. Edify believes our Christ-centered revolution happens in schools under the leadership of Jesus. The schools are the battle fields where all persuasions compete for capturing the minds and hearts of children.
So we are at war and this is how we are fighting:
- Christ-centered training: Training school leaders and teachers to use Christ-centered materials to develop character in students.
- Business training: Training school leaders to effectively manage and to grow sustainable, transformational schools.
- Loan Capital: Providing loan capital to expand and improve facilities at low-fee, sustainable, Christ-centered schools
- Education Technology: Integrating education technology to enhance learning outcomes and employability
These interventions constitute Christ-centered holistic transformation as they deal with both physical and Christ-centered spiritual changes.
So what does it take for us to facilitate these transformational services effectively? What should be our motivation and the posture of our hearts to be effective facilitators of Christ-centered, holistic transformation among schools in the developing world? Edify has 7 core values that we believe are important as we continue this work. Over the next 7 months our staff will be sharing their heart and “reflections” on the following core values and why they are so important to us.
- Christ-like service
- Commitment to prayer
- Operate with high integrity
- All things done with excellence
- Applaud the entrepreneurial spirit
- Best idea wins
- Be joyful, be thankful and have fun!
Dr. Makonen Getu
Chief Transformation Officer
and Program Assessment
About the Author
Makonen has almost 30 year of international economic development experience. He has worked as a researcher at various universities and published several books and articles on topics related to economic development, foreign aid, microfinance, and faith. Makonen worked with different donor agencies and NGOs in several developing countries. Makonen holds a PhD in International Economic Development from the University of Stockholm.