Saturday, July 24, 2010

Intabazwe – Day 4

We spent our morning with Thoko again. Soon she had the girls busy with making tea, dishes, and sweeping. Cole was sent outside to chop her wood. When the chores were done she told us we could rest in her living room and turned on the TV. We felt she was taking advantage of us, having us do the chores then sending us in another room to watch TV. She didn’t even join us in the living room. We thought about leaving but finally got her to sit down with us. She began to ask us questions about how we do weddings, then funerals, and soon we were talking about ancestrial worship. She told us how it was tradition for her to talk to her ancestors and slaghter a cow for them this week. We read scriptures in the Bible about what God has to say about that. At first it seemed helpless, but she slowly showed interest. She explained it would be hard for her to break her culture’s tradition. We left her with a list of the scripture we read to her so she could continue to read it and see what God wants her to do. We were happy we decided to stay a little longer with her and felt that God was really speaking to her heart.
My highlight of today was a moment during our Children’s Ministry this afternoon. After we finished our activities we just played around with the kids. A few girls came up to me and had me sit down so they could play with my hair. While I was surrounded with girls with my hair going every direction a little girl popped up right in front of me. She sat on my lap so I wrapped my arm around her and started rubbing her arm. She sank right into me and squeezed my hand close to her. She moved my hand to her face, then other places she wanted to be touched and loved. I was moved by her hunger for love and to be touched. The song playing at that moment was “Made to Love” by Toby Mac. I thought to myself, “I was made to love Jesus and loving this girl now is like loving my Lord.” I am so thankful that I can serve Him here and love like He wants me to!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Intabazwe – Day 3

Today we found ourselves in a house of someone whose business is selling beer. His name is Tsoso and his friend Hacosta was also there visiting. My interest was just to be friends and build a trust, however, Christianity soon popped into conversation. While the two of them shared a bottle of beer the question was asked, “Do you guys go to church?” We found out they both use to. Tsoso grew up in the church but then quit going when his pastor stole his wife. I worried about the walls that could have easily been built to Christians and the church. He was bitter to his church and pastor but open to us and what we had to say. Someone shared about how they had been hurt in their church and had to learn to forgive. The conversation moved to the beer they were drinking. I grew nervous again not wanting to offend them. By this time three or four more guys arrived and were listening. Tsoso introduced them as customers and friends. I’m thinking in my head about how bitter Tsoso could get towards us as well if we started sharing verses about what the Bible says about drinking. We would be taking away is business along with his entertainment. Verses were shared but the Holy Spirit was defiantly present and working in his life as well as the others! One of the guys, Nhlanhla, even said he was happy we were there and that they needed a revival. Hacosta asked if we could come visit again. Why do I worry? God had everything taken care of and had prepared their hearts before we even knocked on their door. He promised me before in Isaiah 55:11 that He would accomplish what He desired and the day after told me not to worry. Now my prayer is that He would help me step out of my flesh and into His Spirit more in times like these.

Intabazwe - Day 2

Today we had the opportunity to do a lot of chores again. We went back to visit our first friend we met Monday, Thoko. When we arrived she was in the middle of doing lots of laundry. We jumped right in and started helping! Ashley and I are in the top picture washing her laundry by hand in a bucket. Then someone else helped her rinse in another bucket and two more helped hang to dry. It is tradition that the men don’t do house chores, but Cole helped out with carrying the heavy buckets of water to dump.
The last house and person we met today was Cisilia. She was excited to teach us part of her culture by showing us how to make pap and start a fire in a wood burning stove. Carliegh is in the next picture sifting the pap to prepare it for cooking.
Even though most of today was spent doing chores, I’m reminded that God works in the small ways too. It is a big deal for a Basotho person just to get a visit from a white person. I know our interest in them and desire to become friends and help them out will make a lasting difference in their lives. Sometimes it’s not by words that we make God known, but through our actions.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Intabazwe - Day 1 with TST

Today was a good start to a fresh week in a new village. Well, new for the team but for the inters it’s very familiar. My day started with a walk with God while watching the sunrise and then encouragement from His Letters. I read Isaiah 52 and verse 7 says,

“How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, ‘Your God reigns!’”

I know that is us now, in the mountains and visiting people and sharing about our God. I also was encouraged with chapter 55, verses 9 and 11,

“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts… so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.”

Before the Thrive trip arrived here I felt God preparing me for His big works He was going to do in this time. I’ve been afraid I will miss my opportunity to experience His great power but He says here that He will accomplish what He desires! His thoughts are greater and no matter what, I will see them happen.
Our first house turned out to be a lady that was a friend of the 24/7 interns last year. It was also relevant that she got a letter from one of them while we were there! We had fun talking while having tea, doing dishes, and singing songs together.
The second house we visited was filled with lots of children! We started out with chores. We helped do the dishes and clean the floor. After that Ashley led games with the kids and we also met a couple guys that were neighbors that came over to meet us.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Here is my cabin and ministry groups! They are the best!

Seeds to Fruit

This week we are ministering in Naledi where the four of us have ministered a few months before. Tuesday Alicia (24/7 intern) met a couple ladies on the road and recognized them from the time we were here before. The older lady was very excited to see Alicia again and told her that her daughter was healed now! We prayed for her daughter who was deathly sick at the time. Now she was up and walking down the roads with her mom! It is awesome to hear of how our time here a few months back has made a difference in people’s lives and is encouragement for us to get the opportunity to be in this village again. Even if we only see seeds planted now, we have faith that they will produce fruit.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

On a Mission Trip!

The Thrive Student Trip arrived here last Saturday and we spent Sunday training and getting to know each other. There are 14 of them, 4 of us, and one staff, Matthew. Matt and the 4 of us are leading the TST. The ladies in my cabin are Hayley, Cassie, and Morgan. My ministry group is Cole, Ashley, Carliegh, and Ami. I have been having a good time spending time with these people!
It has been super cold here! It gets below freezing at night and during our first day of ministry it snowed a little on us. I did get to see the Drakensburg Mountains with snow on them for the first time! They were so pretty it was worth the cold.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Leratong Children’s Home

We have been taking a break from Hope House to work with Next Step at Leratong for about a month. Hope House is an orphanage or children’s home that we have been visiting weekly all year. Leratong is a children’s home in Qwa Qwa that we visit twice weekly and spend all day with the kids. Our big theme is, “You Are Special.” A couple projects is creating a book about them and decorating their own board for their room. Their rooms are plain brick wall lined with bunk beds with no color or personality. With these boards they will have a place to show who they are.
Our day with these kids is filled with games, stories, crafts, songs, and love. Before or after our day we have some time to hang out with each other. One of their favorites is having us sit on the ground so that they can play with our hair. Another favorite is getting their picture taken or taking pictures themselves.