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We are so excited to be serving in Malawi. We invite you to take this journey with us. Keep the beautiful people of Malawi in your prayers, and us too.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Family Outing To Ndirande

The "Uzungus" 
Beautiful mountains in the background
Andrew did a fantastic job of leading and organizing the event
Becca and the kids 
Alice is in the black shirt and jean skirt in the middle
What a day it was!  Last Sunday, we were invited to worship with our brothers and sisters of the Africa Evangelical Church in Ndirande.   As we walked through the streets of this giant mass of humanity crammed together, I asked God, "Why?" Why was I born into a family that loved me and a mother and father who cared if I came home at night.  As i saw kids who were ridden with sickness and the everyday hardships of living in extreme poverty, I asked God why.  Why in the world do these people suffer so deeply?  I know that these sad situations are results of sin entering the world through Adam and Eve but gosh it's hard to walk and smell and see these people who suffer so deeply and struggle so frequently just to live another day.  But, then i was reminded of something i'd read the night before from Francis Chan's book Erasing Hell.  He wrote, "It's not about figuring out all of the mysteries of God, but embracing Him and cherishing Him--even when He doesn't make perfect sense to us." As I stood confused with God at the plight of these dear precious people God reminded me of His hugeness. It's not blind faith that we have but we must submit ourselves under the sovereignty of the One on the throne. We are the clay and He is the Potter.  In a more clear way than ever, I saw the horrible effects of sin being in this world but then i was reminded of the beauty of the cross of Christ. There will soon be a day when there won't be places like this anymore.  But, until that day comes, we are going to go hard to tell these beautiful battered people of a better place and a King who is good in all that He does and is.  This is a good message that we have to give them and it is worth giving our very lives for.

We had an incredible time praising the King of Kings all morning with them amidst immense physical poverty.  But again, i was reminded that you are not poor by the amount of money that you make in a month.  You are poor if you don't know Jesus.  The believers of this church were certainly not poor.  Their praises resounded out of the tiny humid building into the bustling slum of hundreds of thousands of people.  Many children gathered at the entrance of the church building to see why these "Uzungus" were there.  The dusty streets were filled with people, smells, and sounds that still are vivid in our memories.  They are loved by God just as much as we are.

The main reason that we went was to encourage the small church in any way that we could.  Alice and Andrew are the two sports ministry leaders from that Body of believers and their big smiles showed us the face of Christ.  We were encouraged to see Alice taking on leadership roles in her home church as she took the kids outside and taught them Sunday school.  That is the goal!  To raise up a generation of youth in Malawi who go and make disciples through their local church to the ends of the earth.  After the service, Alice and Andrew invited Becca, Lyzee, and myself to attend their first big community sports outreach.  (that's what the pictures are from)  It was exciting to see them take such ownership of the ministry and how they organized everything so well.  There was well over 80 people there for the netball game against a local school team.  Men, women, and children from Ndirande. They all came wondering what all the commotion was about. Alice had prepared a Bible lesson for the group and opened up the time by sharing the Word of God with these people.  Muslims, Christians, and many others from all different walks of life.  It was really a great opportunity to present Christ and she did it well.  By the way, she is 17 years old, still in high school and lost both of her parents when she was young. But she has God.  She has the Holy Spirit. And that is enough to do incredible things on this earth. God used her and will continue to use her.

Please continue to pray for the ministry in Ndirande.  Pray that God would break through in that place in a profound way that would make the nations in awe at how great Jesus is.  It was quite a wonderful day but pray that the work will continue on a weekly basis and that God would empower them daily to live the life of Christ among those they are seeking to reach.  Thanks for praying. God is really doing much more than we expected.  Praise Jesus!

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