Healing the Poverty Mindset pt. One with Tim & Terry Andrews

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At a Glance

Tim and Terry Andrews have been powerful forces for change worldwide. Their work in leadership with the world’s largest Christian relief organization, World Vision, for 30 years in Africa, and now with Root-to-Fruit has led to the transformation of entire communities for the glory of God. 

Learn how they met and about their first ten years providing relief work in active war zones. Terry shares the gripping story that led her to begin working with Muslim children and the surprising results! 

This is part one of a two-part interview with Tim and Terry Andrews.

What You'll Hear

Chapter 1: Introducing Tim Andrews (1:08)

  • Tim and Terry Andrews were career missionaries in Africa with World Vision
  • Tim was a consultant for several years in California before moving to Oakley, where he met Terry.
  • He grew up in a charismatic Christian household where he saw firsthand the love of God by his father constantly bringing in kids who had nowhere else to go and providing for them.
  • He was saved as a kid listening to his Dad tell bedtime stories about the Bible and Christianity.

Chapter 2: Introducing Terry Andrews (9:25)

  • Terry moved around growing up and lived in numerous locations, including Germany, Austria, Massachusetts, and Virginia. Her father was a professor. They attended church on occasion.
  • Terry wanted to become a Christian, which led her to read the Bible personally. This is how she came to trust Christ as her Lord and Savior.
  • She spent periods in her college years and early twenties away from God, even becoming an atheist, but eventually returned.
  • An important part of her growth as a Christian was when she went on an internship in Nepal. She met persecuted Christians that had been socially exiled by their families and friends, but still had a visible joy.
  • Tim and Terry took a Perspectives class together with Ralph Winters, who instilled in them a heart for the evangelism of Muslims.

Chapter 3: Relief Work in a War Zone: The First Ten Years in Africa (25:02)

  • Their first assignments in Africa included Mozambique and Zaire, both of which had civil wars going on at the time.
  • God protected them during their time in Zaire, and they eventually fled by helicopter with the rest of the international staff there.

Chapter 4: Turning Points and the Brokenness of Poverty (32:14)

  • When they were in Mozambique they encountered truly terrible conditions; land mines were placed in the farming lands so that people could not farm and people were starving to death.
  • After a Peace Accord in 1993, the Andrews were told to discontinue their relief work and turn everything back over to the government.
  • The government had a strong communist influence and just didn’t care about their people. Nurses and doctors were apathetic and often required bribes from the people for treatment.
  • Terry became convicted that while they were doing incredibly important work on external things such as feeding people, they weren’t nourishing the internal, and they needed to change their focus.
  • A coup was a huge wakeup call and spiritual turning point–we were scared to death, watching rebels fire into houses from our kitchen window.

Chapter 5: A Calling to Work with Children and Surprising Results (44:08)

  • Terry and Tim were evacuated to Conakry, Guinea, which had a large Muslim population.
  • Terry felt burdened as she saw so many Muslim children and thought that they would never have the opportunity to hear about the love of Christ; there was no one to tell them.
  • She began having tea regularly with her neighbor and they became friends as they discussed Christianity and Islam.
  • Terry wanted her son to learn about God in a Sunday School setting and offered to include her neighbor’s children. They agreed and she started teaching a Bible study from the common book of Genesis. 60 children attended her first lesson.
  • News about Terry’s program was spreading locally and she was invited to use a Muslim school for her program.
  • She expected more pushback from the parents, but the children attending her classes became better behaved, got along better with their family, and even did better in school, because their worldview was shifting and they were starting to understand the value of human life and starting to experience a loving God who created them with a purpose and a destiny.
  • The refugees helping with this program began to take it into their nations with great success.
  • Eventually, this ministry grew into Children in Christ, which now operates in 23 Islamic countries.

Using the link above, you can read the transcript, listen along, and adjust the speed of the podcast while you listen.

I remember just seeing these former Hindus that had lost everything because by coming to Christ, their family rejected them, their friends rejected them, all their inheritance was gone. But the joy in their eyes is like, you couldn't deny it!

-Terry Andrews (14:54)

Go Deeper

Children in Christ

The world says that children are not valuable, that they need to grow up before they are important, that evangelism should focus on adults, and that children should pursue societal acceptance through fitting in and following societies norms.

At Children in Christ, however, we believe that children are incredibly valuable and worth knowing and pursuing, and that their value is found in Christ. Most people have their worldview set by the age 14, and yet we confine ourselves to focus our evangelistic efforts on adults, not children.

Called to go to challenging places and unreached people groups, CIC inspires, equips, and mobilizes a God-grown indigenous ministry from local church to broader communities that:

1. Values Children

2. Ministers God’s Love to Them

3. Matures Them in Christ

4. And Empowers Them to Impact Families, Villages, and Nations for Christ.

Perspectives on the World Christian Movement: A Reader

Perspectives on the World Christian Movement presents a multi-faceted collection of readings exploring the biblical, historical, cultural, and strategic dimensions of world evangelization. Writings from more than 150 mission scholars and practitioners (over 60 of them new to this edition) portray the history and anticipate the potential of the global Christian movement. 

Every one of the 170 articles and side bars offers practical wisdom enabling Christians to labor together in bold, biblical hope to finish the task of seeing that Christ is named and followed among all the peoples of the earth. The Fourth Edition contains over 60 articles and sidebars that are new to this edition. Many articles have been updated and revised.

The Kingdomizer Training Course

A Kingdomizer advances the truth, goodness, and beauty of God’s Kingdom in the world in which they live. The Kingdomizer Training Program is a series of online courses designed to equip you to live out Christ’s truth and redemptive love in transforming ways.

The Kingdomizer Training Program teaches you a true, Biblical Worldview and how to use that worldview to impact others. 


I remember just seeing these former Hindus that had lost everything because by coming to Christ, their family rejected them, their friends rejected them, all their inheritance was gone. But the joy in their eyes is like, you couldn’t deny it! -Terry Andrews (14:54)

And I just remember being on the plane to Zaire and thinking, “Man, I’ve been working on the outside of the body. I’m making sure they don’t starve, taking care of infections and that kind of thing. But it’s meaningless if the inside isn’t changed. And I think that was maybe the beginning of God, speaking to me about two things. I knew somehow, rather than fixing the outside of the kids, he wanted me to do something on the inside. -Terry Andrews (37:49)

I’m not necessarily a deep strategic thinker, but what I am absolutely convinced of is that communism and atheism dulls your mind towards caring, because there’s no reason to care; there’s no reason to even try. -Terry Andrews (38:53)

What good is that gonna do when there’s bullets flying through our window? But something happened, Tim and I just read Psalm 91, I think three times, and we really felt God’s presence; it just surrounded us. It was thick, like a blanket is all I can say. And suddenly, it just didn’t matter. It didn’t matter if we lived or died, you know, because Jesus was there with us. -Terry Andrews (41:59)

I was asking the Lord, “How can I possibly reach these kids? They’re so Muslim.” And the Lord reminded me, “Don’t call them Muslim — because they’re lost just like you were lost; and they’re a person just like you are a person.” -Terry Andrews (44:51)

But on the whole, a lot of parents would come to visit [the Bible club], and I would expect them to want to shut us down. But they said they wouldn’t — and just to backup, you know, when you teach from creation, you really teach the creation of man, that you’re made in God’s image — that you’re fearfully and wonderfully made. That the characteristics of God were meant to be in you, that you have a purpose and a destiny. And that’s all we were teaching, which is really kind of a worldview. And it’s different from the Muslim worldview, really, which is, you know, there’s, there is a God up there, but he’s constantly angry at you. -Terry Andrews (50:21)

I didn’t know the term ‘worldview’ at that time, but when they understood who they were, what their identity was in Christ, that changed their behavior, and even their school performance. -Terry Andrews (52:27)

It’s really an incredible ministry, it’s about 225,000 children meeting under the trees in 23 [Islamic] countries. And, the last I looked, I think there were about 18,000 volunteers that keep it running. -Tim Andrews (56:46)

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