Meet the Steiners
“I (Ann-Kristin) looked outside at an icy cold night with sleet drizzling down. Not the best weather for a walk, I thought…I had just gone outside when suddenly, I heard footsteps behind me. They came closer and closer. Slowly, I turned around, there he was: Timon. Funny, he hadn’t put on a jacket, yet he wanted to accompany me for a bit. “What does he want?”, I thought annoyed… He started to reveal his feelings for me, I quickly interrupted him in hopes to end the conversation: “but I’m going into missions one day!” To my surprise, he simply answered “Me too.” I was slightly shocked and speechless. “Why do you want to go into missions?”
“When I (Timon) moved to Germany at 16, I never thought that my past as a missionary child in Africa would catch up with me again. Up till then my Christian faith consisted mainly of head-knowledge. Although I became part of a vibrant youth group, I let myself be carried away by the worldly trends. It was a compromise that was doomed to failure. After a year, I reached quite a low point. Just then, I encountered God and he showed me how much he loved me despite my mistakes and failures. So, on a late summer’s evening I was in tears, kneeling at my bed, and I gave my life to God, something I had never consciously done before. It was then when my faith experienced a fresh revival. I came to a strong conviction that I wanted to serve God with all my gifts and all my time.
My high school was followed by a year of community service, and now I’m busy studying computer engineering. But what I love doing most is being involved in the youth ministry at our church. And I realized that my gifts were better used in ministry, than engineering. I felt a strong call to missions during our several years of evangelistic outreaches in the city.”
By now Timon was frozen from the cold mid-night walk. But I (Ann-Kristin) had become curious and thought, “Now I have to at least give the guy a chance.” And so, I told him about how I developed a passion for missions:
““I had the privilege of growing up in a Christian home. When I was still a little girl, I entrusted my life to God. Even at a young age, I was captivated when I heard missionaries speak about their work. As a naive teenager, I decided: I’m ready to go to the ends of the earth! After my secondary school, I completed a two-year training as a social assistant. With the goal of “Missions” in mind, I finished my high school to study Social Work and Religious Education. Well, I didn’t really want to marry, but I’ll give you a chance,”“ I said into the night.
Our conversation that night ended with a “chance” and our ways didn’t part from that day on. The years went by, we got married and finished our studies (2012).
Timon continued work as an Engineer for two years, and Anni focused on volunteer work as well as mothering our firstborn (2014).
15th January 2015: It was the day we moved to South Africa for the first time. Timon quit his well-paid job and returned to „college” … or to be more precise: bible college in Cape Town, South Africa. During these three years of intense studies the burning question in the back of our mind was: where do we go from here and what has God planned for this new season in our lives?
Several years back, we sat in a mission’s presentation by family Hasenknopf who spoke of their work among the amaZioni in South Africa. After the presentation we joked with them: “Who knows, maybe we’ll become colleagues one day!” What no one expected: this phrase became a reality in July 2017. We embarked on a journey through South Africa to experience ZEMA’s ministry first hand. During this trip we came across Luke 9:62 in our bible reading, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.” The verse spoke right into our situation. We had already “put our hands to the plow” by coming to South Africa and journeying to the amaZioni. This was the final confirmation after many months of prayer and discernment!
In August 2019 we were finally ready to head into the amaZioni mission field in South Africa. Since then, we’ve settled well in Port Elizabeth, where the amaZioni harvest is ripe. We are so thankful for the Lord’s guidance through these many years of preparation. We are confident of this, he who began a good work in each of us will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus (Phil 1:6).
By Timon & Ann-Kristin Steiner
The ZEMA Home Office would like to thank the many volunteers who assisted in writing, editing, designing, folding, sealing, addressing, and organizing this newsletter.
If you would like to volunteer to help with the quarterly newsletters call or text Kathy at 847.872.7363.
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