Ok so here’s another Africa adventure I had last week that I thought was worth sharing for the comedy value if nothing else. I’m still trying to get my arms around what God is doing here at Celebration Church in Zimbabwe. 22 locations, 28 services per week, training, serving teams, plans for buildings, property stand acquisitions plus the feeding programs keeps way too much stuff on my desk sometimes. In an attempt to get organized I decide I want some manila, 3 tab folders. Sounds easy, right? Actually I knew from the start the 3 tab feature was probably just a pipe dream, I was gonna be lucky to get the folders. After a couple stops with no luck I decide to delegate my frustrations to one of our guys at the office. So I give him an old beat up one that I had from the U.S.and he returns saying, yes he found some, the company will bring them over right away. You see in the picture what I received later in the day at a cost of R5 (about 65 cents) per folder. Hand made folders…..and the best part is they were PINK!!! I’m still wondering how people in Zimbabwe file things or do they just keep everything in organized piles like me?
The other picture is from a bag of candy that is sold here. I loved the “rich in glucose” announcement on the front. Very creative way of saying “loaded with sugar” I’m sure every mom gets fired up about getting some of these for the kids!!
Here’s another fun fact I learned recently. Police roadblocks here are just a way of life. Usually they just want to see my license and import permit for my vehicle. Not so this day, he asks me for my radio permit. Of course I have no idea what he’s talking about. He says I see you have a radio in your vehicle and I agree. He proceeds to inform me that I must obtain a permit for my radio and I could be fined and imprisoned for not having one. I’ve never heard of such a thing and I’m thinking this is another “fundraiser” so I make my donation to the cause and he lets me go on my way. I later find out that you do in fact need to buy a permit for the radio in your vehicle for the mere cost of $35. I truly do love Africa, never a dull moment here!!!
Hmm…Maybe it’s time for another “10 Things About Africa” list? I’m sure I have 10 or more new ones since the last one.
Seems like it always comes back to the children. We have begun looking at some facilities in the city to begin sending regular ministry teams to just love on people and pour out the love of Jesus. I went to Isaiah’s Home of Love yesterday for a visit to see if we could open a relationship with them to begin sending teams. I was blessed and saddened at the same time to spend time with these babies and hear some of their stories. The little guy you see sitting in the crib is one of their newest additions who was found abandoned in the bush. The stories are the same for most all 20 of these kids, they have been dropped off in some of the strangest places, thrown away and unwanted by their worldly parents.
I’m so glad that Jesus never, never leaves or forsakes His children. Here’s what Jesus had to say about children:
14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
I have to really honor and respect the ladies who spend their days caring for these beautiful children. It’s real service to God when you are willing to serve someone who can do absolutely nothing for you in return. Pray for these special servants and especially pray for the children of Zimbabwe. There are so many more just like these that never get the opportunity to be loved.
Together 4 The City. What a great name for what turned out to be an incredible event for the city of Bulawayo. It was organized by one of the local churches with invitations going out to all the churches in the city if they wanted to participate. 8 local churches accepted the “challenge” as it was held on Sunday morning which of course meant giving up a Sunday service at the “home” church. Michael Eaton, an author and pastor from Nairobi, Kenya was in town as the main speaker for the event and he delivered a great message entitled “The 3 Things The Blood Of Jesus Will Do”. Great message, great venue, great turnout of people; however to me the most amazing part of the whole day was the spirit of unity that was so pervasive one could almost cut it with a knife. I mean think about it, 8 different churches coming together in one unified day of praise and worship to the same God we all worship, I believe the Lord was pleased. This is what heaven will look like. I have never before seen in one place together such a diverse group of followers of Jesus, coming together to give Him the praise and glory He deserves. Young and old, black, white and everything in between, Shona and Ndebele, Baptist and Pentecostal, ALL of God’s people were represented. I truly believe this is the beginning of something new in this city. Lets pray for unity in the body of Christ worldwide. After all, it’s not about our identity but rather HIS identity as author and creator of the universe…..Isn’t it?