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William and Sharyn Vaughan


It was a privilege and I am grateful for being brought up in a home where my parents were faithful in teaching us the Bible, even hearing many stories of missionaries and the places where they served the Lord.  At a young age I came to realise through the teaching I got from home and at Sunday School that I was a sinner and needed to trust in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of my sin (Rom 3:23, 6:23).  I couldn’t come into a right relationship with God through my parents but through Jesus Christ alone (John14:6).  So my parents were instrumental in leading in coming to salvation.

With my dad being a pastor my siblings and I were taught how we could be involved in the life of the church and serve, even as young as we were.  But I also had a desire to serve.  But there was one big problem – I was quite a shy person, especially when having to face people.  I would rather have the earth open up and swallow me.  I learned how to deal with it to a certain extent.  I even got involved with our youth group and later even helped lead that ministry until I finished school and left home to serve in the compulsory military service at the time.

Maybe my choice of career even somewhat reflects my shyness – I trained to be a motor mechanic.  Trucks, cars and engines don’t talk back.  During my apprenticeship I moved to Boksburg which was closer to my work place and then went to work for Mercedes Benz.  I met my wife, Sharyn, at the Baptist church in Boksburg and was married less than 2 years later.  We even spoke about the possibility of serving the Lord full-time in ministry but I felt and even said to others that asked if I was considering it, that the Lord will have to show me very clearly that this is what He wanted.  Sharyn and I were very active in the life of our church and served wherever we could.

I had a good job and promising prospects for the future with Mercedes Benz after being with them for over 6 years, but decided to go work for someone else who offered for me to help run a workshop.  This did not last very long and I opened up my own business, my own workshop.  All through this time I felt the Lord was using these times of change to challenge me as to where I was going with my life.  I never said anything to anyone and even said that if I could do well in my business and make enough money, then I could go and be better equipped in seminary and pay my own way without having to leach off other people for my needs.  Well, the Lord had to teach me many things through this.  Things went ok for about a year then He clearly showed me through events that took place and the reading of Scripture that this is not where He wanted me to be.  I had to humbly submit to God and put my trust in Him, especially now at a time when I was in financial trouble.  I was able to pay all my debts through the sale of some of my workshop equipment and the help of family, friends and a church who supported us in our decision in following the Lord in obedience to serve in full-time ministry.

During my 4 years of study Sharyn and I asked the Lord to take us to the place where He wanted us to be, and so we even put a map of the world on our kitchen wall to remind us that we were open to wherever God wanted us to be.  For us it became clear that our own continent of Africa is the place that He wanted us and I believe God brought us into contact with Samaria Mission so that in this team we could be His instruments in His hands to reach out to the lost.  My desire has been to help churches grow and develop into churches that in turn go out with the Gospel.  2 Tim 2:2 challenges us to find faithful men to teach the Word of God who in turn will do the same.  I am often reminded of the words of my father to me before joining Samaria Mission, khruxon ton logon, PREACH THE WORD! 2 Tim 4:2.