Friday, April 25, 2008

40/40

40/40 is the semi-annual orientation program for new missionaries that we are now leading. A group of 41 arrived on Wednesday and have hit the ground running. They will be learning a lot, and we ask that you would pray for each one of them that the Lord would use this time in their lives to prepare them for the ministry to which he has called them. Also pray for us as we lead them and care for them over these next few weeks. Pray also for Jack and Judy Sprayberry and Mark and Janice Keeton who are our logistics coordinators for this program. They have the mammoth task of feeding, housing, and caring for each of our 41 participants in a variety of situations and locations. We will try to keep you updated, when we have access to email, and let you know how things are going. Right now one of our big requests is for Ebby Musika. Ebby is my assistant and also our resident cultural expert. He is the one who does most of the cultural orientation and helps me on a day to day basis as we run the program. Ebby contacted me right before we started on Wed. to let me know he was having some health problems. It seems that he has developed high blood pressure and has had a minor stroke. He feels fine, but has paralysis on one side of his face and will probably not be recovered in time to do much of the things he needs to do. Pray for him that he would fully recover and that the Lord would sustain him during this time of healing and recovery. Pray for me as I try to flex and cover his responsibilities as well. We are grateful for all of you and the ministry you have in our lives.
I'll try to update you on how things are going and add some pictures later.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Zach left for Kenya today

Saying Bye is never easy, especially when it is to your 15 year old son going off to boarding school in Kenya. This will be Zach's third and last term for this year. His next break will be mid-July. We had a great time with him while he was home this last month but it is still sad to see him go. Please pray for us as we are seperated from one another. Also, pray he will have a good term and do well with his school work. We just got a text from him and he is on the bus now at the airport waiting to go to school. Thank you to all who have all ready been praying.



Playing when he is supposed to be packing....
Finishing up packing...did you get your toothbrush???


Loading up.

Zach with his roommate for this term, Caleb Bolthouse. Caleb's family lives in Lusaka and works with Flying Mission.

Zach waiting in line to check in.

This is it, he is about to go through....


He's Off!

















MK's sure can be innovative!

Adventure City is a small waterpark in the capitol city of Lusaka. We went there this weekend to celebrate Justin's 13th birthday a little early. When we arrived someone told us the power was out but it should only take about 10 min. to fix. So, we proceeded to go ahead in and wait. As you can imagine, if there is no power then the water pumps can not work. Well, we were there for almost 5 hours and the power never came back on. At first, the kids were disappointed because the water was just a little too cool for swimming so they ran up and down the slides. Then one of them had a very bright idea. They decided to take water bottles, fill them with water, and pour them out as they went down the slide. They were having so much fun that soon others caught on as well and then everyone at the water park was having fun.








Justin and Anna filling up their water bottles.


Happy 13th Birthday Justin! That is one big choc. chip cookie!








Friday, April 18, 2008

Called to Follow and Fish

This week at Chainda II Baptist Church I taught the story from Mark 1:14-20 about Jesus calling Simon and Andrew then James and John, to follow Him. These were fishermen and probably not well educated yet Christ chose them. What does God want us to obey from this story? He wants us to follow Christ which means we need to love, serve, and obey Him no matter what. He also wants us to fish for men too. God wants to use Christians to share the good news with people who do not know Him yet. Will you choose to be a faithful witness for Jesus?
This past summer a volunteer team came and brought some homemade hand bags to carry your bible in and wanted me to give them to some women. Today, I gave them out to these women. They were so excited! As I was passing them out they started singing a song about praising God and how God blesses them. Then they started standing up and putting it on their shoulder walking around strutting their stuff as they continued to sing. When they finally finished and it was quiet again, I told them to look inside because they had not noticed that there were things inside. Then they really got excited. They usually carry their bibles to church in a plastic bag. One woman said she was going to throw her plastic bag in the fire because now she had a nice bag to carry her bible in. A big thanks to the women that worked so hard to make those bags!

A Day of Prayer and Fasting for Zimbabwe

We have heard that tomorrow, which is Friday, April 18, has been called a Day of Prayer and Fasting for Zimbabwe. Some of you may not have heard this, but please join with others in prayer and fasting if you would to lift up the future of this country. Please share our prayer below with as many as you can to pray with us tomorrow.
* * * * * * * * * *
Thank you for joining with us on this Day of Prayer and Fasting for Zimbabwe - Friday April 18.Please pray as God leads you to pray. If you would like to use the guide below to help you get started please do so. God told Moses and Aaron to go a speak to Pharoah, telling him, "Let my people go.""But I will harden Pharaoh's heart that I may multiply My signs and My wonders in the land of Egypt."So Moses and Aaron did as the Lord commanded, but Pharoah's heart was hardened and he did not listen. Then Pharoah caused the taskmasters to increase the labour of the Israelites and the people cried out even more.Then the Lord said to Moses, "I am the Lord and I will bring you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians, and I will deliver you from their bondage. I will also redeem you with an outstretched arm and with great judgments. . . and you shall know that I am the Lord Your God who brought you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians. . . Then the Egyptians will know that I am the LORD, when I am honored through Pharoah, through his chariots and his horsemen."(Excerpts from Exodus 7:3-4; 5:14-15; 6:6-7; and14:18)

Dear Abba, our compassionate Daddy, who is the creator and ruler of all:The people of Zimbabwe have been crying out to you. Men have acted to change their situtaion,but we know that man can do nothing without you. Never before have the people of Zimbabwe been so expectant and hopeful of change. Never before have they been so courageous to take a stand on election day. And now many are being abused, tortured, imprisoned, and even killed for taking a stand. Never before have the people become so angry that change has not come. Just like the Israelites, MAN can do nothing in Zimbabwe. Only if YOU choose to act for them and redeem them can any change come about. Like Habakkuk (3:2) we say that we have heard of the mighty acts you have done for others in past days, and we beg you that you would renew your work in this generation. By the power of your mighty right hand, oh Abba, bring forth truth and mercy and justice. By the works of your hands overthrow tyranny and oppresssion. May the people of Zimbabwe know that YOU ARE GOD! May the world stand up and take notice because of how you acted on their behalf. Faithful Father, we pray that you will raise up a godly man whose desire is to shepherd this nation under your authority. A man who desires to see the people and country prosper. One who desires to build up and not destroy. Abba, we also realize that when you sent your son to earth, He did not come to overthrow earthly governments, but to build a spiritual kingdom. Thank you that you are at work building a spiritual kingdom during this trying days. Help us to press on and to continue to follow you whether or not things change. We are nothing God, this battle belongs to you alone. Thy will be done.
Prayer advocate, Zimbabwe Evangelism Team

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Nyau Nyau

Nyau Nyau is the Chinyanja name for big, black, army ants. These ants travel through our yard once or twice a year and then leave almost as quickly as they come. We see them out in the bush sometimes too and they are very interesting to watch. They are usually traveling in a line and because they are so big you can see them so well. They move together in thousands. I asked a friend why they called them Nyau Nyau and he said it was because of the sound that they make when they get annoyed like when they are being bothered. You definitly don't want to get in the middle of them because they will bite and it hurts pretty bad. Here is a very short video and a picture. Enjoy!




video

Sunday, April 13, 2008

A day out with Dad

Zach and Justin went out with Kevin this past Friday. They drove 2 hours to Luangwa bridge, put the boat together, and then drove the boat up the river until they reached Lisongwe(about a 1 hour boat ride) which is actually on the Lunsemfwa River. On the way, Zach took several pictures and videos. I hope you enjoy them. They saw one crocodile and a pod of hippos, which was pretty exciting. Kevin taught a lesson and the boys entertained the young boys and girls that were in the village. They all had a good time and hope to go to another part of the river this week.


This is a Baobab tree.














video

video video

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Ethiopian Eunuch

The women gathered together Thursday to hear another story from the Word of God. This day it was the story of Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch taken from Acts 8:26-40. This week I wanted to make sure that these women were following Christ and that they knew that their connection to God was strong.
This lesson centered on baptism: what it represents, and who should do it. Baptism does not save us. However it is one way we show that we are putting our faith in Christ. It is also the way we show our family and friends that we are following Christ. It is a picture on the outside of what God has done on the inside. It is also a way of helping us to be sure that we are following Christ. In the Bible, people were baptized as soon as they were sure they wanted to follow Christ. Baptism is by immersion because it is a picture of us being buried in the ground and being raised up to live a new life. When you put your faith in Christ, your old sinful life died, and you have begun to live a new life as a child of God.
Here in Zambia most often when someone gives their heart to Jesus they are not baptised until about one year later or longer. They feel like they have to really teach the new believer beforehand which is good but they also want to test their life to see if they are really going to change. We spent quite a bit of time talking about Baptism being an act of obedience. Its a testimony: our first profession of faith. It is a witness to our community that we are now identified with Christ. It's a time when we want others to know that we are not ashamed to follow Jesus. It is the first step of obedience in our Christian life. There were 9 women there and all 9 of them had been baptised. They committed to learn a bible verse this week and to share this story with someone else. Pray for these women as they go out this week in their villiages and share God's Word with others.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

South Africa trip

March 20th we boarded a plane from Lusaka to Joburg. At the same time Zach was also flying to meet us in Joburg. We had a few days together before our big meeting for all of Southern Africa. The meeting lasted for 5 days and we were able to reconnect with old friends, be encouraged through the Word of God, and had opportunities to break out and go to different sessions. We had an excellent worship team that came to lead us in worship. Also, there was a volunteer group from Tenn. that came to teach all of our children while we were in meetings. After the meeting our family stayed in Joburg. for several days and had medical appointments. Zach even had all 4 of his wisdom teeth cut out and he is doing great. Hope you enjoy these pictures.

We received a pin for being missionaries for the last 10 years.

This is our whole Zambia Cluster of Missionaries.

The day before Easter Hannah was able to participate in a Easter egg hunt at the guest house where we were staying.