The river ministry is not much different than any other ministry. It is all about relationships that last over an extended period. The families that are out on the river live in somewhat isolated communities. This makes developing relationships harder than those that live in the city. When you enter a community you are not trusted, many strangers have done harm in these communities both religious and governmental. This is why they are wary of strangers special white men from foreign countries. This is one reason Wayne recruits people from the local city churches for help. They are still strangers but a lot less strange than Wayne. The color of the skin is one characteristic that sticks out along with the accent in the language. The goal in working with locals on these projects is to try and help them build a relational bridge into these peoples lives quickly. Wayne understands the process and seeks to disciple the volunteers he is working with in this ministry. It is a slow process, and many mistakes are made by these novice volunteers, but it is amazing how the Holy Spirit can use all these mistakes and turn them into advantages.
One strategy Wayne teaches to his volunteers is to use the story cloth as a contacting tool. It works so well in this culture. Through the cloth on the table and the first question out is; “What Is That?”. From there the conversation becomes very natural as the first story is told. Pray for these workers of the harvest and their story cloths.