Sunday, August 31, 2014

Mr. Phiri

Mr. Phiri is a blind man living in Ng'ombe compound.  He is 87 years old!  Not too common to see someone as old as he is in Zambia.  He lies on the ground each day with only a bag and blanket under him to bring a little comfort.  He is constantly rubbing/scratching at his arms and other parts of his body because he says it feels like insects are crawling inside of him.  Thankfully, he has a daughter who cares for him the best she can.  Even though he could not see the gift of the BGR bucket and all that was within it I know he will feel the comfort of the items inside.  A big thank you to all who have packed a bucket before.  They are making a difference to so many.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

From a caregiver to one who receives care

 Once a caregiver, Alice, now lays on a reed mat close to death.  When I walked in to her small unfinished home she was lying on her stomach on a reed mat.  At first, I thought I had mistakenly heard wrong and that it was not an adult woman we were to visit but a small child.  That is what she looked like to me lying under the blankets.  Her daughter woke her up and helped roll her over so she could receive the visitors.  I recognized her when I saw her face.  Alice had been a caregiver who went out with me a couple of times to give out BGR buckets some time back.  Now, she needed someone to care for her and we were there to bring her a BGR bucket.  She couldn't talk much or loudly because she was so weak.  She would whisper in the caregiver's ear her response to my questions.  I shared a story from the bible and some of my testimony and then asked her if she had ever repented of her sins and decided to follow Jesus.  She said she had a long time ago.  

Matilda opened the bucket and began taking out each item explaining to her and her daughter how to use each thing.  Thankfully, her daughter stays with her and is helping to care for her at this time.  Her daughter was so appreciative of the BGR bucket and said the things inside the bucket would help her to care for her mother better. 

 It has been 6 days since I made this visit.  I just called to check on Alice and she is still living but very weak.  Please pray for her to feel God's comfort and presence in her last days.  Pray for her daughter to have strength each day to care for her sick mother.

****This week I got a call saying that Alice had passed away on the 26th.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Buckets of Love

 Amai Banda had cancer in her uterus and it has spread now to her stomach and some other places as well.  Upon entering her house she immediately pulled up her shirt and showed me what I'm guessing was her colon coming out of her abdominal area with a plastic bag around it to catch any waste.  Perhaps this is a colostomy but I'm doubting this is how it is supposed to be done.  It was not clean either. Amai Banda has a neighbor who is a care giver and comes to check on her from time to time.  Other than that Amai Banda cares for herself and some young grandchildren.  As we talked she shared about how this cancer has changed her body.  There was a picture on the wall of her a couple of years before.  She was a heavy set woman and now she is very small.  I shared Christ with her and she said she was a believer all ready.  Pray for her as she deals with this cancer and goes to get chemo once a week.  It is not easy for to get to the hospital for this treatment each week.  She was very thankful the BGR bucket we were able to give her.

The next patient we went to visit was Mr. Mwale.  He had a stroke a while back which left him paralyzed on his left side.  His son had to help him get from his curled up position in the chair to sitting up.  He couldn't talk much either or at least we couldn't understand anything that he said.  I know he must appreciate our visit and gift but he never smiled the whole time we were there.  His wife used to be a care giver but she died a couple of years ago.  Of course, that makes me think there is more to his story than what was shared with us.  There is always more to the story.....
As you think of Mr. Mwale, pray for him and his two sons who try to care for him.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

8th Grade

 Hannah started 8th grade this week!  Can't believe how much she is growing up!
Pray this will be a good year for her and that she will strive to do her best.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

We are happy to announce.....

 that Zach proposed to Megan Turner  and she said....


 They were at the beach when he popped the question.

This picture was taken at Christmas but I really liked it so I thought I would include it here.  

They will get married March 14th, 2015.
We are so happy for both Zach and Megan and pray God's richest blessings on their lives as husband and wife.  Pray for them as they plan for this wedding, find jobs, and find a place to live in the coming months.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The rest of our trip

 We left Mongu and traveled about 2 hours on a pretty good road.  Then we came to the place we have to ride a pontoon across the Zambezi River.  Thankfully, it was not a hot day because we had to wait 2 1/2 hours before it was our turn to cross. As you can tell only a few cars can get on at a time.  

 We were the last ones to get on and we were hanging off a bit onto the ramp with our other tire.  Kevin wanted me to walk out there and take a picture but I decided I didn't really want to go for a swim if I were to fall in. Ha!

We made it to Sesheke and had a good visit with the Wint family. Unfortunately, I did not get a picture of them.  I did take this picture of the place their church is building a place to worship.  Pray for this church to be a light in this area so that others may come to know Christ.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Trip out West-Children's Ministry

On our trip to the Western Province of Zambia we got to go out one day with another missionary that lives there named Gerri.  She does a lot of children's ministry.  We were able to visit one of the places she goes.  The children sang songs for us, quoted lots of bible verses and the books of the bible, and did a sketch!  We were so impressed at how hard they had worked to learn all these things.

 This little girl was so cute!  We kept trying to get her to let us hold her but she wouldn't let us.  As we saw her walking around and playing we noticed she had a charm around her waist.  This area that Gerri is working in has a lot of witchcraft.  Pray for this child and her family to put their faith in Christ and not in witchcraft.

 They did a sketch of the Battle of Jericho when the Israelites marched around Jericho, carrying the Ark of the Covenant, and blowing their horns, then the walls fell down.

 We then went outside and played games with the kids.  It was neat to see Hannah just say the beginning of the game and they would finish her sentence showing they knew the game.  

 Kevin even played "Do like I do..."

 Gerri had some moves too! 

 We were invited to see the man in the village who is the blacksmith.  It was neat to see these men work.

 This man carved the handles.

This is the church in the village.  
The main church leader in this village has now divorced his wife and is seeing another woman. He has even taken his daughter’s Bible [that she received for memorizing 50 verses], sold it and given the money to the second wife to help pay the bridal price. Please pray that he took to heart teachings from the book of 1 John this past week as a volunteer team worked in this area.  Pray he will be convicted of his sin and do what he needs to do to get right with God.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Trip out West-Medical Clinic

Hannah took peoples blood pressure and Gerri wrote it down in their book.

Then the patients would go and see Melissa to see how she might offer advice and or medicine to help them feel better.  

While the patients waited Kevin preached and shared the gospel.  Then they would come to me and share their complaints and I would write it down in their medical book.  This picture above was at the end of the time.  As I heard their problems my heart broke.  I think sometimes they just wanted someone to listen to them and then other times they really had medical problems that needed attention.  The very first patient brought a specimen with her and showed it to me.  I won't tell you what it was but let me just say I tried not to show my freaked out face on the outside but believe me I was freaking out on the inside. Ha!  I can't remember how many Melissa said we saw that day but it was a lot in just a few hours.  I remember looking at my watch after one hour and still seeing the waiting room full.  Even though we saw some hard things and heard some sad stories it was a good day trying to be the hands and feet of Christ to these who were hurting. 

There is so much sand in Mongu!!  It is so deep in places as well.  We had to go in 4 wheel drive to get to the clinic just because of the sand.  


Melissa ministers in 3 different clinics each week.  Normally, she has two helpers go with her to just visit and share the gospel with people who wait.  As a result of this ministry 4 different teaching points have started.  Pray for Melissa as she does this ministry on a weekly basis.  Pray for her to have good health and strength for this task.  Pray for the people she sees at the clinic to not only get physical help but spiritual help as well. 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

On the road

In America, as you travel, you can just about always find a good place to get off the interstate and find a good place to eat and use the bathroom.  In Africa, there is not always a good place to stop.  In fact, most often we just pull over and go in the bushes to do our business.  On a recent trip I decided to take a couple of pictures of an actual ladies bathroom we found along the way which we had to pay 2 kwacha to use(about 30 cents).  Not sure what the 2 kwacha was for because there certainly was not any toilet paper.

 There were two choices.  We could use this one which is open air and has part of the wall missing.

 Or we could use this hole in the floor where it was already wet all over the place.  There was no door either.  There was a wall right outside of the door so there was a bit of privacy.

 This is the restaurant we ate at in this small market.

 We had chicken and chips which were quite tasty.

 market area

 After lunch we continued our journey which had us driving through a game park for a little while.  We got to see Elephants, warthogs, monkeys, and several different species in the antelope family.

 On our way home we drove through another game park for just about 20 kms and got to see Giraffe.

The roads were bumpy in places.  We ran into road construction in several places.  Then there were lots of potholes a long the way as well.  I can't even begin to tell you the number of speed bumps we went over either.  The speed bumps are at every little town you drive through. As hard as it is to travel in Africa though it is always an adventure and worth it to see God's creation.  We are blessed to live in such an amazing place!