Today was quite the day! Ministry is going great - and God is really working in this team. We have the opportunity this year to work with schools and ministries that we have never worked with before - so it is great to see God using our students to reach into new areas of Lusaka. Today however included working with two familiar ministries, so I will let the students do the talking.
There is also an update from our teacher Hershey - he is having a great impact as he leads the educational portion of our trip. Yesterday three teachers accepted Christ at the end of the day!
If any of you who are reading this are early risers - pray for us between 4AM and 8AM tomorrow. During those hours, our students are going to be partnered with Campus Crusade staff going door to door at the University of Zambia sharing their testimonies!
Now - on to the three updates from Sarah Hall, Trevor VanAsselt and Hershey Card. (Parents and friends, be encouraged to comment on the blogs, I am reading the comments to the students!)
Hi guys, it’s Sarah! Today was an awesome day, but at the same time, so draining. The coolest thing is to see how God puts energy in us all day to see his work be done. Our first stop was at a combined school/orphanage. It was a really great way to start the day. There was a lot of game playing, dancing and smiles.
We then went into the city to a small gated complex that was in a back ally that was used as a service ally for broken down cars. It was very dingy and had a small food shack that served 3 things - nshima, goats, and relish.
Behind the wall was a small room that held a room filled with homeless boys from the streets. All were between the ages of 13-20. I had the opportunity to go to the room where we prepared the food. It was a small dark room that was VERY dark. All of the players were on the ground as food was dropped in. I am very blessed to see how it felt to prepare, then to help give the food out to these boys. This was a very emotionally draining moment for the entire team.
Our last stop was a home called Matthew 25 ministries. This is a small home ran by one woman. Even though her house is so small, she felt led by God to bring in children who had no home. She had 16 children between the ages of 2-21 who all call her mom. She took care of all of them including herself by faith alone. She truly inspired me. To just live life by faith seems so hard, but she has put her trust in the Lord, and has AMAZING faith. All fo the kids were sitting around us, including one girl I noticed instantly whose name was Rose. She was so shy, but had the best smile ever. She stayed with me the whole time were were there, just sitting on my lap and putting her head down. When we were told it was time to go, it was so hard to say good bye - I wanted to take her home with us. As hard as it was to leave, they will always be in my prayers.
Today was amazing, but very tiring. I am so blessed to be here in Zambia, and I am taking in every moment. Continue to pray - and thank you for your prayers and support. I love you family!
P.S. SHELBS I loved your letter!! Zambia says HI!
Muli Bwanji! It’s Trevor here! Our group day began with us driving over to an orphanage named Balm of Giliad. When we arrived the children were singing and dancing for us. They also shared poems and Bible readings. We then spent the next couple of hours playing games and singing songs with the kids. I immediately felt led to spend time with one particular kid. His eyes did not work together, and he had the greatest smile. God has always given me a heart for children with special needs. I am embarrassed to say that I could not understand his name. He was five or six years old despite the fact that he told me he was 10 on one occasion and 30 on another. This kid played soccer like a champ, because he would just tackle the other kids, it was hilarious! This was the happiest kid I had ever met, and it was so awesome to have the opportunity to share God’s love with him.
Also while we were still there they were digging a large whole to fill with fertilizer and grow agriculture so that these kids could be self sufficient in their adulthood as well as learning about nature. I love serving God through physical labor, it’s a gift God has given me and it has always been a blessing to use it for his glory. The ground was almost all rock, so it was difficult for them to dig. It was cool to help them out as well as share with those watching along the way. It was difficult to say good bye, but I knew were were heading to a feeding ministry, so I was ready to go serve the street children.
We arrived at the building where we would be feeding them - there were over 50 homeless boys there - many of them wasted or high, the majority of them younger than me. I am going to try and paint a picture of what happens next, but it is something that words cannot describe. Part of me is angry at God that something like this could happen, but I know for those who believe, their treasures will be in heaven. Many of the children had slept in drainage gutters filled with piles of trash the night before, their clothes were covered in filth. I was tearing up as we were packed tightly in a small room.
We sang a few songs then Jack called me into the front of the room to share my testimony. I love sharing my testimony, because I know how powerful it is. I have seen God use it in ways that I can’t even describe. This was different though - I had to tell a group of children who have NOTHING how depressed and hopeless I was before I knew Christ. I had been blessed with so much, yet I was blind to it all. I guess it is just proof that material will never fill that God shaped hole in our hearts. My prayer is that God used my testimony to use just one kid think twice about there being a God who loves them.
Then a boy named Sam spoke how he was once a street boy just like them. He decided to live for Christ and put his trust in Him. He then met a pastor who helped to give him an education. Now Sam is entering college and making a life for himself. Jehovah Jireh - God provides! Now THAT is a POWERFUL TESTIMONY. So cool!
We then fed the kids and gave them a new shirt as many threw their old shirts in the trash. One kid took off the beaten OPC Adventureland shirt that we gave out at the same home LAST YEAR. Each kid only had one shirt, and they wanted more, but we couldn’t give them more. One kid at the end of the line did not get a shirt - so Ben Landry took his shirt off and gave it to him. Ben wore this kid’s dirty shirt onto the bus - it was one of the most selfless things I have ever seen - it was so cool!
What an awesome day serving the Lord. It was incredibly emotional, but none of our lives will ever be the same. God Bless!
Hi all, Hershey here, reporting to you about our first two days working with the wonderful teachers of the Lusaka area schools. First of all, I want to say I am blessed to be working with a great group of students and staff of 707. I truly feel they have carried me to the classroom each day, God has given me the encouragement and strength to stand in a foreign land and speak of the truth of education in my life as a teacher in Farmington. After the great blessing of working with these passionate teachers, I am once again embraced by this wonderful group that symbolically carries me home and honestly cares about how my day went. So, I just want to thank you for the sacrifice each of you has made in sending one of your precious family members to this beautiful country.
The schools we are visiting are private schools and usually either for profit or non-profit. The teachers have various educational backgrounds, some have not been to a University but are trying to gain enough money to go. They have cherished the supplies and handouts we have brought them. I am speaking with each group of teachers for three to four hours and am able to bring to them different successes and failures that I have experienced with teaching and learning styles. We also talk about different strategies that might help us in teaching along with chatting about "best practices" in education. One of the more fun discussions I like having with the teachers involves creating an individual mission statement. I think so many people either do not have a mission statement or they lose focus of what their original mission was. I am guilty of this! I finally posted my statement in my classroom so I would be more accountable by my students and every time I see it! Yikes!!
Here are two mission statements that were written by teachers I visited;
"...To impart knowledge and skills to my pupils for self-reliance in society
"My desire is to redeem a poor Zambian child from the claims of poverty and all
forms of vulnerability so that they can in-turn transform the communities in which
And lastly I would like to say a BIG HI to my beautiful family; Amy, Benji, Ali and K.C. and thank them for letting me travel to this beautiful country and work with the wonderful, giving people of Zambia! Thank you for your support and Love.
I Love You and miss you!!!
There are soooo many experiences worth bringing to you - I am sure you will hear them eventually! That is all for now.