Tuesday, December 16, 2008
I have discovered that there are lots of African's in Hong Kong,
There is also a GIANT Buddha!!
I miss Zimbabwe. Way more than I thought I would, already.
In 22 Hours I am flying to Australia to see Lori. I can't think of any place I would rather be, or anyone else I would rather spend this Christmas with. She is.... well she is more than I can express right now, I love this girl.
Tomorrow morning I am going to Hong Kong Disney, why you ask?? Hmmmmmm, If you know me than you know nothing will stop me from seeing Cinderella's castle in ANY COUNTRY!! Even though everyone is that Ocean World is better and that Disney here is small and pretty disappointing. Disney and disappoint do not go together in my vocabulary.
Did I mention that in less than 24 hours I will be getting on an airplane to visit Lori??!?!?
Saturday, December 13, 2008
I keep telling myself that. I am on my way to visit LORI FOR CHRISTMAS!!!!
I haven't relaxed yet. I am busy filling my time with the tourist attractions. I have ridden buses, subways, trams, ferries and I have walked endless markets and seen so many things already.
Tomorrow I am taking a break.
I am leaving behind all of the fellow travelers that I have met in the hostels and I am taking myself to church.
I am going to spend the day with God.
I don't care that I am in Hong Kong, it is time for me to have a conversation with my Father, it is time to start to let go of the difficulties of this past year. After church I am going to learn about the transformation of the walled city in Kowloon, Hong Kong and how one woman who refused to give up on some unlovable people has changed a city and a nation.
Then I am going to head out of the concrete jungle of Hong Kong and into the quiet empty space of one of the other islands to be by myself and let it all sink in.
I keep reminding myself that I am in Hong Kong, on the way to Australia and that I am so loved. God has given me an amazing gift this Christmas. I don't deserve it, but I am traveling around the world to see my best friend to spend 3 weeks of uninterrupted girl time with a girl who loves me so much.
I am so blessed!
Thursday, December 11, 2008
I AM ON HOLIDAY!!!
Today I fly to Hong Kong... why you ask? Who knows... I am there for almost a week on the way to see Lori in Australia!!
I'M ON HOLIDAY!!!
PS I am already missing Zim. There is a shop here with a lot of Ndebele things and seeing it made my heart hurt!
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
But can we ever rationalize injustice. We over looked a harsh dictatorship, we over looked a hyper inflationary economy, we over looked violence, exorbitant prices and escalating HIV raters, but today the people of Harare do not have a clean water source. Today if they drink their water, they die. Today there are no teachers, today there are no hospitals. The nation is collapsing. There is no provision for basic human rights: water, health, education, food, shelter. Things that most of us don’t have to think about are the things that consume the thoughts of the people of Zimbabwe. We spend our entire days planning where we will get food or water.
I know it is hard to comprehend, but it is real. There is a nation of people:11 million of them who don’t know what to do, or how to move forward. I love them all. I want to give them a solution, but there isn’t one. The best I can do is to grab one individual at a time by the hand and share a meal with them, or provide them with safe water, for that moment. What do we do in the long term? It is hard not to lose hope. They ask me how I stay positive, how I can really believe that things will turn out alright in the end, and inside I laugh because I see myself in the moments where I am not positive, where I feel the situation is hopeless and I hurt and I cry and I lash out. But I also how others see me and so I tell them, there is no hope without God. If you know the one true God, then you can have faith that no matter how hard this life is, it all turns out fabulously at the end.
My country is at its darkest point and I am leaving. I am so excited to see my friend Lori. I am spending her first Christmas in Australia with her and I can’t imagine a better gift for me than 3 weeks with my best friend, by sister. Before I get there I am spending a week in Hong Kong. IT will give me time on my own to spend with God, to process through what my brain has seen this year. What my heart protected itself from. I still cry some days in Zimbabwe, but it is like the overflow that my heart can’t contain. Or it’s on the rare occasions when one of my best girls: Christie, Jesika or Lori either step off a plane to see me or get through on the phone to talk to me… I am not sure which is more difficult: travel or calling!! But in reality, I don’t process through the reality of what is happening, I move from day to day on God’s strength and then He gives me opportunities like this to let it all out. I am going to try to do that before I get to Lori, so that I am ready to just enjoy a holiday.
My brain tells me that this trip around the world: I am going to South Africa, Hong Kong, Australia, then back to the states for 6 weeks before I head to the UK and then back to Zim, is so exciting that I am so blessed and I am going to have a great time. My heart tells me that I am a traitor for leaving NOW. My selfishness is afraid that a miracle will happen in Zimbabwe before I return and I will miss it. I am on an airplane right now flying to Johannesburg where I will spend a couple of nights, and I am starting to feel the emotion well up inside of me. My feet have touched Zimbabwe for the last time for a while and I wish I could explain the connection that I feel to this place. It is like a piece of me comes alive when I am there and it dies when I leave. I have never felt that way about a place before. I am glad that I don’t have to leave Africa until Thursday. I can see some of my Zimbo friends that live in Jozi, Arnold especially… I can eat Sadza and call it pap, I can listen to African drum beats and hang on for just a little longer.
My eyes pour over with tears. The man sitting next to me asks if I am ok… I tell him I am, that leaving is so hard. He looks at me like I am strange. He is South African, he is going home. He tells me he can’t imagine living in Zimbabwe, that life is too hard, that you can’t even buy food. I smile and say that even with all of the problems, there is no place else I would want to live and my heart laughs at the irony and I know that it is true. He asks if I have a boyfriend in Zimbabwe and I tell him no, that I have a different kind of love for the place. And he nods and goes back to his magazine.
Tonight I will start to feel the pain of MY hurts for my country, but I will also get to relive the memories of the miracles. This has been a good year in so many ways. I am not listening to the voice in my heart that condemns me for leaving. I am being called away for a little bit, the work that I do when I am on the road is important as well, I know that. MY country and my friends and family are going through difficult times in America as well. My best friend needs to see me, I need to see my dad and my brother, miracles in my own family. I know that this time away will leave me refreshed and that I will be strengthened. I will come back to Zim even more prepared for the battle that exists in each of our lives.
Today I left Zimbabwe, but I carry her in my
Monday, December 1, 2008
1 december 2008
Over the past couple of weeks I have been spending time with ROCK of Africa’s most recent team of volunteers. You can check out thier experiences on www.rockofafrica.org The November trip is always called an ACT of Thanksgiving. People travel to Zimbabwe over the Thanksgiving holiday to serve and distribute much needed relief supplies.
This year, the situation in Zimbabwe is worse than ever and the supplies and food that ROCK was distributed was greatly needed. In the days that lead up to the teams arrival, the weight of the circumstances in which we live here started to take their tole on me. I have been repeatedly sick over the past couple of months, nothing serisous, just enough to keep me tired discouraged.
Things in Zimbabwe are at an uncomfortable place. Prices are exhorbitant. Cash is unavailable, everyone is using US dollars and the prices for things are rediculous: think $2-3 for a can of coke, some places even $6! Fuel is so costly. People are struggling, businesses are struggling. Now we have an outbreak of Cholera at the same time that hospitals are closing their doors for lack of supplies and staff.
There is not clean water in this country. It is making people sick. Some people go days without water for bathing, cooking or drinking. It is HOT here right now. I am drinking about 3-5 liters of water a day. Thankfully you all are buying me bottled water right now. I don’t know how people are surviving.
While the team was here I stayed in a chalet at the rest camp with the girls on the team and it was so nice to laugh and cry and just feel normal. I felt safe from the outside world, the Zimbabwe that was outside the gate. The hungry kids, the blind people begging on the street, the babies dying in the hospital, and the people I love in Harare who are consumed with trying to stop this cholera outbreak!
I was able to stop and just breathe for the first time in a while… and at that moment, the gardeners at the campground were mowing the lawn and I realized firstly, that it had been a long time since I smelled fresh cut grass… and secondly that this smell is the same everywhere. It was refreshing for me to remember that some things are the same everywhere. Cutting the grass is a small example, God’s love is a big one.
On one of the mornings I was staying with the team, I woke up and some of my boys from the street were sitting outside of the fence that is right by our chalet. They were just waiting and wathcing for us to come out. I love those kids. The truth is that my world is no longer on that side of the fence,the side that even if they want to, doesn’t understand Zimbabwe, my world is on that side of the fence… the ugly, hard side. And no matter how great it feels to have a break from it, when the team left I was ready to get back to my life.
I am leaving Zimbabwe next week so this week is hectic. I am packing up my house and getting ready to spend some time in Bulawayo, Gweru and Harare.
Thank you for continuing to pray for Zimbabwe, and for me!
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
It is pouring down rain in Vic Falls. This is a season that I find magical in Zimbabwe. Tonight it is dark, except for the occasional bolts of lightning that light up my neighborhood. I have my rain coat on and I find the gold flip flops that my grandma sent me for my birthday sinking into the mud puddle that is usually my driveway.
I pass by my neighbor’s house, whose yard I need to pass through and manage to chat with them for only 2 minutes…a miracle by African standards, but they are trying to contain some leaks in their roof and I am standing in a downpour. I love this country.
I wade through their yard and wonder how their chickens can still be alive as the standing water is touching above my ankles. I realize at that point, #1 that I am concerned about the animals that I will be slaughtering next week at their son’s birthday party and #2 that I am ankle deep in a puddle of mud, water and chicken poop. So I keep walking.
I remove the thorny branch that is serving as their back gate and pass into the neighbor’s yard. I manage to only make myself bleed in 2 places from the thorns and wonder if that would really deter someone from breaking in… I decide that a metal gate and pad lock might serve them better, maybe I will get them one for Christmas.
I am now entering the yard of the family that keeps my food in their freezer. I knock and am forced into their house at dinner time, I am somehow able to get out of eating sadza with them, but still must chat for a few minutes before I can remove what I need. This time I am taking everything… not just one piece of meat or one bottle of water!
I pass back through the yard and close the thorn bush gate, run past the Nyati-Ncube’s house trying to move unnoticed, when Mai’Bridget hands me some chicken and says, “put this in our freezer!” with a huge smile on the face that I have loved since the moment I moved into my house.
I race back through my muddy yard and open the door. What is that humming noise that I can hear over the rain on my asbestos sheet roof? Ah, that is my very own freezer. I no longer have to use the freezer of anyone else. Today my veggies and my 1 kg of beef are secured under my own roof. I am settling in. I am making a home.
The first time I set foot on Zimbabwean soil was 3 years ago yesterday, I would say that it is about time.
Monday, November 17, 2008
We are facing immense difficulty. I know that the world is in economic crisis right now and we are all feeling it, but the financial crisis in Zim is unbelievable. I heard an estimate the other day that 80% of Zimbabwean families cannot afford to by adequate food supplies for their family.
We are in a massive clean water shortage.
We are dealing with an outbreak of Cholera that is devastating Harare and surrounding areas.
These are human rights issues: Food, water, health.
Pray for justice, pray for a solution, pray for a miracle.
We have a team coming, they arrive on Friday. Pray that they will be open to see what God has in store for them. Pray that they will love without growing tired. Pray that they will remain healthy.
Something big is happening...
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Please pray for the people that are suffering from Cholera. Please pray for the people that are starving. Please continue to pray for the relief workers that are here, they are tired and many of them do not know Jesus... how they make it through a day here, I am not sure.
Pray for Zimbabwe.
Pray that I can be patient and trust that for whatever reason God wants me to be in these meetings. Pray that I will allow Him to guide and direct my thoughts and my words. More than anything please pray that i don't miss an opportunity to minister and to be a light wherever I go.
Today I go to the Ministry of Health and back to my 2nd home... Immigration
Friday, November 7, 2008
Monday I ran out of the building filled with fear.
I forgot who I am: I am Gigi, Warrior Princess
I forgot whose I am: I belong to the Lord Almighty, The host of heavenly angel armies, The King of Kings, The Lord of Lords, I AM, The Lord of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
I forgot who I fight: The enemy of my soul
I forgot why: To bring Glory to God, to bring the Kingdom to those who don't know
I forgot How I fight: By putting on the full armor of God and STANDING
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take cour stand against the devil's schemes.For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
I actually learned this passage in the King James Version... and I remember "principalities" and "having done all to stand. Stand therefore." And wondered what that meant.
But today I am taking this passage from The Message because it almost knocked me over when I read it after Monday...
A Fight to the Finish10-12And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we'll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels.
13-18 Be prepared. You're up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it's all over but the shouting you'll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You'll need them throughout your life. God's Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other's spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.I feel like I am walking out of boot ca.mp
Thursday, November 6, 2008
but at least I can say that I have not given up.
Things did not go well at all on Monday, in fact they did not go at all. I was not allowed to have the meeting that was schedule so nothing at all was accomplished! I was scheduled to fly to Vic Falls on Tuesday. I have been sick with some sort of throat infection since I arrived and am fighting NOT to lose my voice. I am flying back to Harare now and will meet with some high ranking government officials before I head back to immigration tomorrow.
One thing that did become clear on Monday, was how much of a spiritual battle this is. I don't understand it, but I know that it is true.
Please pray for me to have the courage to stand, and the wisdom to let God do the fighting!
Monday, November 3, 2008
Instead, keeping with "Regina" fashion, I ended up in Harare around 10pm on Sunday night! As I was sitting in a family counseling session LATE on Saturday night I felt my mind wander into "Oh, I really should be back in Harare by now" and immediately I stopped myself and refocused, trusting that God has a plan, and that He will sort out the details.
I will tell you though, I started to feel a LITTLE stressed Sunday afternoon at 4pm when I was doing a family session on the lawn of a gas station...with NO plan as to how I was going to get to Harare. Here is how it happened.
I finished with this new family (homeless, 2 kids ages 12 & 7 that have NEVER been to school for even 1 day, parents HIV positive, but without a home and healthy diet the effectiveness of the ARV's is decreased.) at 5:30pm, it was starting to get dusky and there were over a hundred people standing on the side of the road waiting for lifts in Gweru.
And then, a friend of mine drove by and saw me, he picked me up and drove me to KweKwe (the next town, about a 40 minute drive) thinking that there might be less people and a better chance of getting a lift. He knew that I was meeting with immigration this morning and how important it was, so in KweKwe when people said they had been waiting for lifts all day, he continued to drive. At one point we saw a little bus that was going to Harare, so he raced up to it, flagged it down, stopped it in the middle of the road, and got me a seat on a very overcrowded bus that got me to Harare at 10!
I was so relieved to be back home at the Williams' house, and Asher and I had so much to catch up on, that it was after midnight when I got to sleep. I had to be up at 5:30 this morning to get ready for my appointment.
I am ready. I am as ready as I will ever be. I am glad that I didn't have time to prepare, I am sure that I am walking in, allowing God to give me words. I do not have all of the letters that people recommended for me to take. My file already has over 50 letters from people, I will let those words continue to speak of my work here. I think I will go in and just be me. After all, it is not my skills, and others opinions that are going to keep me in Zimbabwe, everything I do is for an audience of one. This morning as I woke up, spent and tired after what was a very busy week, I know that my God is saying, "Well done."
If I ever have to leave Zimbabwe, I want to do it exhausted, dirty, with an empty wallet. I will leave everything I have here when I go... but today I am not going anywhere except to Laquenda House, where I will meet with a man who will see about giving me permission to be here. It is everything, and yet nothing at the same time... I got my permission to be here in November 2005, when I met some kids in Vic Falls and my eyes and ears were opened and I heard my call. God is so good!
Pray for me.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
26 October, 2008
From my journal...
It is amazing to me how even in the light of my recent appointments at immigration and the fact that my TEP has been denied, my life hasn’t changed.
On Wednesday when I was told that my TEP was denied and that evening I worshiped God under the stars at St. Joseph’s. Thursday I took the dentist to Voice of Peace to finish his clinic with the kids. Today I had a lunch appointment to make plans for the future, I went to a rally at St. Josephs and met with the matron regarding our schedule to train the staff and to being our mental health assessments of the kids and begin our group counseling. Then I headed to Voice of Peace to teach a lesson on God’s love for each of us.
I imagine that there might be a girl that when told, “No”, as often as I have been told, would shrink back and go. I imagine her, but for some reason, I can’t be her. That girl might be embarrassed less frequently, than I have been, but I don’t think she would change the world. That girl, when her work permit was turned down, would go home and pack up, and spend the next 20 days saying good-bye to loved ones. But I am not that girl, this girl will spend the next 20 days doing what I have been doing… what I have been called her to do. As a matter of fact Monday, early in the morning I will hitchhike to Gweru to spend a day with a family of one of our boys, and then Tuesday hitchhike to Bulawayo to build a relationship with a new orphanage by beginning their assessments and staff trainings.
I will then come back in time for my meeting with the Principal Chief Immigration Officer on Nov. 3, for my appeal. I don’t know why I have to continue this battle with immigration, but I know who I am and I know that He has given me a task here. Whether I stay or go in 20 days, I will carry out my duties in a manner that will honor and bring glory to God.
Friday, October 24, 2008
My work permit has been denied...
I have to say that I am in utter shock. I thought that immigration would drag it out, literally forever, but I NEVER, even for a moment, thought that my application would get denied.
In the moment that I received the news, I laughed. I really thought the woman speaking to me was joking. Trying to get me upset, or just teasing me. But I did not take her seriously. 4 hours later, still at the immigration building, I took them seriously.
My work permit has been denied.
Now I am bombarded by thoughts and questions...
Am I called to Zimbabwe? Was I ever? Is my time here over? Are you sending me somewhere else? What does this mean for Refuge? What does this mean for me? What does this mean? Do I keep fighting? Do I let go? Where are you? Why don't I hear you? WHAT??!!?
The only answer is this, "Trust me, I am with you."
I KNOW that God loves me. I know that He has a plan, I even trust that the pain that I am feeling right now is necessary. But I am hurting. My heart feels split in two. I am crying, and I don't even think I am crying for me... but for a nation. My heart still tells me that my future is here.
Thursday 23 October, 2008
I spent another day at immigration today, because although they know that my permit was denied, they cannot find my file and give me the letter that I need to make an appeal. It feels like an attempt to discourage me, but I had a great night with God last night and calls from 2 of my fave girls in the world and today I feel alright. I feel stronger than yesterday and ready to not give up.
So I spent the day at immigration.
3 hours sitting waiting for a letter that tells me I can't work in this country. The whole time I feel like maybe God will change the words on the paper and I will get this much needed sticker in my passport.
Instead, they close for lunch and tell me to come back on Tuesday. I hear very clearly, "Don't leave." So I say, "No I will wait, if that's alright."
About 30 minutes before they will return from lunch, I am looking for a bathroom. There is no one on the first or second floor so I make my way to the third floor. I have never met with anyone on the third floor because it is where the executives are. I pass by an office looking for someone to unlock the bathroom and a woman asks me, "Who do you work for?" I tell her, "ROCK of Africa, but i am just looking for the key to the toilet." She gives it to me and I make my way there.
In the toilet I meet a lady who asks me about the progress of my permit, which makes me tear up and she said, "Don't worry... just keep trying."
So I take the key back to the very nice woman on the third floor and she asks me a lot of questions about my work here and is really helpful. She then asks a man to meet with me, who is so kind and generous and uses his position to help me.
Long story short, I now know how to appeal and what i need to do.
I also have an appointment on November 3, 2008 for this appeal.
Most people appeal in a letter. I will write a letter, but I get to deliver it in person.
I left immigration today with a "no" that felt like a "yes".
I know that God's plan is perfect, and way better than mine. I was content to go pick up a sticker and have it put in my passport. Instead of the sticker, today I have a relationship with several very important people in the immigration department and an appointment to meet with the man who's decision determines whether or not I stay in Zimbabwe.
Please pray for continued favor.
The only answer I have is that He loves me. I trust Him. His plan for my life and for Zimbabwe is perfect.
PS, I laughed because the man who has been helping all along said to me yesterday when he found me in an office i shouldn't have been in said, "You are very brave. You have courage i have never seen. Anyone would have given up by now. This is why I respect you. You are a Christian and I see that by how you act here."
God's plan is best.
Dr. Liz, an American that has been living in Harare for 3 months was leaving, so Ash and I took her to Antelope Park for her last weekend. We were able to spend 2 days there enjoying the being in Africa! I hitch hiked from Bulawayo and met them in Gweru and it was such a treat.
We decided to do a lunar horseback ride, which Jesika would have loved! She is going to die as she reads this...
We were riding horses in the moonlight and although our guide Rod insisted that we stay on the trail, my horse, Casio, seemed to have my same wild abandon and we decided that it would be better to ride through the tall grasses. It was beautiful (Liz got attacked by a thorn tree, but other than that we were safe.) At one point we even got to join a heard of Zebra and wander around with them.
In the morning we went swimming with elephants and then hit the road to get back to Harare, where we will be doing a dental clinic at Voice of Peace and I will be meeting with immigration.
I love Zimbabwe.
Friday, October 10, 2008
So, I had to leave my house at 6:30, walk through my neighborhood and into town.
Walk through town and go through the border post. I had to cross a bridge and go across the border into Zambia (a different country). Once into Zambia I had to get on a mini bus and drive to a place that has internet connection.
I then spent the next 8 hours trying to skype, email, and phone South Africa.
I am now sitting on the floor crying in front of my computer waiting for someone in America to call me in Zambia to CONFERENCE me into a phone call with South Africa.
That is like calling someone in London to conference you in to a call with Tijuana when you live in LA!!!
I love Africa :-)
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Well I won't back down
No I won't back down
You can stand me up at the gates of hell
But I won't back down
No I'll stand my ground, won't be turned around
And I'll keep this world from draggin me down
gonna stand my ground
... and I won't back down
(I won't back down...)
Hey baby, there ain't no easy way out
(and I won't back down...)
hey I will stand my ground
and I won't back down
Well I know what's right, I got just one life
in a world that keeps on pushin me around
but I'll stand my ground
...and I won't back down
(I won't back down...)
Hey baby, there ain't no easy way out
(and I won't back down...)
hey I will stand my ground
(I won't back down)
and I won't back down...
(I won't back down...)
Hey baby, there ain't no easy way out
(I won't back down)
hey I won't back down
(and I won't back down)
hey baby, there ain't no easy way out
(and I won't back down)
hey I will stand my ground
(and I won't back down)
and I won't back down
(I won't back down)
No I won't back down...
Won't Back Down
Friday, October 3, 2008
Wow, there is always so much to talk about when I get an internet connection!
It has been 20 days since I have been able to post a blog… how can I even begin to fill you all in.
20 days in a time when the countries surrounding mine are in turmoil, we have had the death of one president, the resignation of another, and in Zim… well who really knows what is going on here.
I left Harare on the 13th and flew to Johannesburg, South Africa. I was filled with excitement and hope because I was taking a holiday!! For a week I was going to travel South Africa with no plans until I had to meet up with Glen and Linda Megill in Durban for Pastor Chris’s ceremony.
In Joburg I stayed at a hostel with people from all over the world. I was with people from Canada, England, Scotland, Ireland and Australia! I immediately relaxed and decided to spend a day or so in town. I made my way to the apartheid museum and through Soweto. This museum is really something to see, but the history meant so much to me on this day. As I walked the halls of the museum and looked that the pictures of history in the making, I knew in my heart that history was being made back in Zim. I want to trust what is happening here, and I know that God has it in control, but I saw the brutality and the pain that was involved in the change in South Africa and I want something different for Zimbabwe.
As I finished the museum, I walked into the current events exhibit and nothing was there other than the headlines regarding Zimbabwe. SA’s president Thambo Mbeki was negotiating a treaty between Mugabe and Tsvangari. I couldn’t help but wonder if this is what the people of SA fought for… if the former leaders of SA would be disappointed in their president. I was disappointed in him, and my heart broke for the people of Zimbabwe. If SA
The next day I rented a car (stick shift) and after a 2 minutes driving lesson in the parking lot, taught myself how to drive a manual in Joburg… anyone who has driven in Africa will know that this is probably not the best idea, but it was fun. Joburg is known for car jacking and road rage, and at one point when I pulled out into an intersection and will my very small car managed to stall and block all 3 lanes of incoming traffic, I experienced a little of what driving in Jozi can offer, but I simply looked at those hooting at me and said “Sorry I am a learner” and restarted my car and drove away, causing them all to miss their entire green light!! OOOOOPS!!
As I drove myself to Durban (a 6 hour drive) every radio station was talking about the agreement that Thambo Mbeki had successfully negotiated between the Zimbabwean parties. He was being threatened with removal from office in his own country, but was busy making deals in our country that would seriously impact not only Zimbabwe, but the surrounding countries as well…. Something seemed wrong about that and I couldn’t keep listening so I turned off the radio and listened to my ipod instead! John Mayer’s “Waiting on the World to Change” played several times in the drive and on the radio and the words resonated strongly with me. Everything people talk about in Zim right now is contingent upon our situation changing. I hear things like “if things turn right…” or “When things are different” in regards to getting a job, quitting a job; moving or not moving; building a house or not building. I wonder what we are really waiting for. I have continued to maintain the position that Zimbabwe will change when we change. When Zimbabweans refuse to stand for less than what is right and when foreign government’s refuse to accept Mugabe’s reign as legitimate. I am tired of waiting for the world to change, I am ready to change the world.
I stopped in Petermaritzburg for the night and walked around the town the next morning. I was overwhelmed with the history of this place, what especially hit me what the impact this place had on the life of Gandhi. He was thrown off of the 1st class train in 1863 because he was not white. On a statue honoring him is a statement saying that his non-violent movement started here.
When I finally reached Durban I was so excited for a holiday that I headed straight for the beach!! It was almost like being home!! I spent a few nights in a hostel and just hung out and enjoyed myself. I was able to meet some guys who teach the kids on the street to surf and I hooked up with some of the local lifeguards for surfing lessons…. I have a few things I want to do before I turn 30 and I am starting to check them off!!
When Glen and Linda arrived we travel to Etsone and attended the ceremony inaugurating Pastor Chris as the moderator of the presbytery in Southern Africa. It was freezing cold, but such an honor to be there to support the man who has been such a blessing in my life!
While I was in South Africa, my friend Lori was running her second half marathon for Refuge. Please check it out www.run4refuge.com she is so great! It is not too late to donate… there are people running until October 12 and everything that you donate is matched by her company!!
After we left South Africa I had the joy of spending Linda’s first week in Zimbabwe with her!! It was so cool to see her meet all of the people that her life has been impacting for all of these years!
We got to do lots of ministry and spent time with the kids at Monde Primary School, the kids of Gwayi River and the people that we love in the areas surrounding Vic Falls. We hung out with old friends, made new friends and it was such a blessing to see Linda in action. She gave me a new nickname, Regindiana Jones… I think she wanted me to rethink Regina the Rockstar after hearing me sing with the kids in Monde! But when you look at the pics I really do look like a rockstar, don’t ya think??
I have had moments in the past 20 days of great joy. Sitting on the beach in South Africa and putting my feet in the ocean for the first time in what seems like forever was great. Seeing 9 lions with Linda on her first trip was amazing. But there have also been times of excruciating ache. My visit to the hospital this week showed that the treaty between the parties has not yet provided reason to celebrate in the lives of the people. The children’s ward was filled with babies whose main issue was a lack of food. One of these babies, a four month old named, Brandon I held and fed him his first milk in 3 days. His mother had died the previous Friday. 3 hours later he was dead. I have no doubt that when I return to the hospital in a couple of days I will find that he is not the only one. But we have been able to be a presence in the lives of his relatives who do not have a church family, and Glen spoke at Brandon’s funeral. His family has sense called me several times to come over and pray with them and I know that God will use Brandon’s life to bring his dad and brothers and sisters to Jesus.
God is moving in Zimbabwe. We are not waiting on the world to change, we are looking for every opportunity to change the world!PS I have tried to upload pics but the internet is too slow... surprise, surprise... I will do so when the internet allows :-)
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
It has been a long time since I have been able to blog. So much has happened that I am not really sure how to begin, I think I will just start a fresh and eventually fill in the gaps! I wasn’t blogging because I didn’t want to, I was in fact desperate to get online, but I live in Zimbabwe and internet isn’t always readily available! I have again been taught to be patient and to expect things not to work.
I love my life. I know that people think of being a missionary as a life of suffering and sacrifice for Jesus. There is no doubt that at times I have suffered. There have been a lot of tears and a little bit of fear, mostly on behalf of my boss and the others who feel responsible for me, but in comparison to the old timey missionaries or to people who are in places like China, I can’t imagine myself making a case for how much I have suffered. There is no doubt that I have sacrificed. I have given up my plans for my life, I have given up my home, time with my family and friends, my little dog, Rocky. I have given up my salary and my shoes. I have given up being trendy, I don’t even read fashion magazines anymore. I have given up sushi and eating out all the time. I have given up the life that I knew and took for granted. In doing so I gave up on me, on the me I knew, on the me I thought I was becoming.
BUT, what I have received in return is amazing.
I L-O-V-E my life. Despite the frustrations and the disappointments, they have been many, I am happy. Not the surface level, “this is a fun day” kind of happy, but the kind of happiness that you recognize even when you wake up and everything has been going wrong and you don’t even know what is going to come next and you realize that it doesn’t matter… nothing will take away the fact that you are blessed.
There is so much that I want, I want to get married, I want to have babies, I want to adopt tons of kids. I want to be recognized as a resident of Zimbabwe. I want my project to be able to operate without worrying about permits and law changes. I want to see my family more regularly, and I want to live with my dog. These things are major desires, but not one of them will make me any more or less happy that I am today.
I don’t know how that happened, but I know that on a daily basis I surrender my dreams to a God whose dreams are bigger and better than mine. It is hard to let go sometimes, but as I do I see more and more that it is impossible for a God that loves me to give me anything less than the best.
The best is good. The best fills me with joy.
I sacrificed all that I thought was good and was given something so much better in return.
I love my life. (Even when things don’t make sense)
Sunday, July 27, 2008
I had such a good time and I am loving the team already. It is such an encouragment to have them here, I am sensing a difference in my heart already!!
Thursday, July 17, 2008
I was in a morning prayer meeting for the health domain, which I attend to pray for the future of health care in Zimbabwe, which I feel is pivotal for a bright future for the kids that we work with and I heard Dr. Wazara, a man I have grown a great respect for speaking of an urgent situation.
He told us that a foreign embassy had funded a program and come to him for help directing it. They wanted to perform surgeries on babies with hernias, a condition that can be fatal or cause infertility. They were to perform 300 surgeries and help families from all over Zimbabwe.
So far Dr. Wazara has received 70% of the funding and supplies. They are to begin the surgeries today and the families have traveled from all over the country to get to Harare for the surgeries. This travel is very expensive for families whose salaries rarely cover living expenses.
The embassy called yesterday to say that they are pulling out at the moment because of the political situation here. The hospital is in an uproar because all of the people are here waiting. The hospital staff is on strike…everyone expect the surgeons (who are providing their services free of charge) and the nurses. They want to move forward, however there is a lack of funding.
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? (James 2:5) I believe that some of these children that will be helped through these surgeries will go on to impact Zimbabwe and the world in a very big way. There is opposition, but God will make a way. I think he will use us, from so far away to help these kids become who he intends them to be.
What they need is the money to pay the nurses a stipend, money to feed the people working and the children in the hospital and money for stitches. The nurses were promised a stipend of $10 us per day. That will be $3,000 us for the entire program and $1,000 for food and $1,000 for the rest of the medical supplies.
I am calling for action.
We need your help. I know that some of you will want to sponsor a major part of this project, but even if you would like to sponsor one nurse for one day, it will make a difference!! I believe we can raise this money in a day. Ask your friends; ask your family ask your doctors. $5,000 is all that is needed to correct hernias of 300 babies. We need you money and we need you prayers.
I believe that we will move and the people of Zim will see that their hope is not in foreign embassy’s but in the Kingdom of God. That He can and will move on behalf of his people regardless of political climates!
If you would like to help financially, please email me at email@example.com and I will get you details on how to donate, or go to www.rockofafrica.org and click donate now. Type in Refuge: Medical Aid in the box! Please email me either way so that I can pass the info on to Dr. Wazara immediately!
No longer should where you live determine whether you live. ~Bono
Monday, July 14, 2008
I have really been thinking about the importance of the relationship between a person and their mentor.
I have been blessed to have some AMAZING women mentor me, and sometimes it surprises me to hear the girls that consider me a mentor.
I wanted to share an experience with you that I consider and early birthday present!
Asher Williams in an 18 year old girl that lives in Harare and has a huge heart for the Lord and a heart for orphans. I consider her an answer to the prayer of my heart for the past couple of years to have God send me a person that I could raise up to lead Refuge when it is time for me to let go. She is almost done with high school and unlike most of her friends has a real desire to stay in Zimbabwe. She is considering doing correspondence courses for a degree and has been working in the local orphanages with me.
We were sitting in church last night and Pastor Tom was preaching from 2nd Timothy and she passed me a note that said "Timothy and Paul are like me and you."
As I started to read the words that Paul wrote to Timothy, I could imagine myself as an old woman (not really that hard to do these days... I am turning 29 in a couple of days and everywhere I go the youth hold up 3 fingers on one and and make an o with their other to point out that I am almost 30...which in my opinion is still VERY young, however they seem to think I am quite old) writing those words to Asher.
Paul loved God and loved Timothy very much. It takes a very special kind of love to mentor someone. I am learning that, and in that understanding I am coming to appreciate the women who have mentored me in the past and those who still continue to mentor me now.
I have such a great life... when I read these words, written by Paul close to my heart:
"I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has given me strength, that he considered me faithful, appointing me to his service. Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief. The grace of our Lord was poured out on me abundantly, along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus." 1 Tim 1:12-14
Indeed I do give thanks!
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
Today I went to Gweru to check on Farai and his Aunt, who he has been living with for the past few months. Although I have been feeling a little down and discouraged lately, mainly because things with immigration don’t look so great, I was really looking forward to getting out of Harare, onto the road, to do what I do.
It would have been really nice to write a little paragraph right here about how today was the first day of my time in Zimbabwe that I actually did some work legally with that ever important work permit in my passport, but instead I am going to tell you to keep praying. On Monday, Immigration gave me 21 more days to stay in the country, which although it doesn’t sound like much, it is a miracle.
I felt as if I came alive as Ngone and I jumped into back of a pick-up truck in Harare and headed for Gweru (about two hundred and something k’s). The wind was blowing in my hair, and I couldn’t keep the smile off of my face as I spent the entire morning talking to God about how great He is. Without a doubt, I know that this is what I was born to do. It still amazes me, that this person was inside of me, but she was there all along!
When we got to Gweru, the real work started. I haven’t seen Farai in a couple of months, because it was not safe for me to travel. Gweru is a political hotbed, it is very MDC driven and during these tumultuous election times, it wasn’t safe for his family or for me to try to make why way to their home to see them. (Even on this trip, we had all of our meetings in town, rather than their home in the high density as Farai’s Aunt Bereta thought it would be safer for everyone involved.)
I met with the school administrator for a private high school, who knowing Farai’s situation was please to take him on as a student, and even said that he himself would mentor Farai. He was so kind and generous and went on and on about how important my work is and how he was sure that this was a divine appointment, and that he looked forward to working with more of my kids in the future. That was so nice to hear! Normally I feel like I am BEGGING someone to educate these boys, but this man considered it an honor. What a joy to come across a man who realizes that his role as an educator is a very high calling. He will Farai’s English teacher.
Please pray for Farai, next Monday, the kids will start writing their exams. Because Farai has been in school previously, the school is going to allow his to write exams as an assessment of what grade level he should go into. Farai is turning 19 on the 21 of July and is very behind, so we are praying that he will test well enough to earn a spot in Form 4. (That would make him a senior in high school.)
After all of the school stuff was out of the way, and all of our counseling sessions were over Ngone and I sat to process what had taken place. (I am hoping that Ngone, who used to be a teacher will want to be trained as a counselor for families like Farai’s). I asked him what he thought and he said, “I didn’t realize how difficult your job is”. I laughed as I ordered a ridiculously expensive pizza for us to eat before we made our journey. (The prices here are rising at an ever increasing rate of inflation. A pizza that was 220 Billion in the morning was now 1 Trillion).
After we ate we had to stop at a hotel to use the bathroom because there was no water anywhere else so all of the toilets were closed. When we went in to the hotel I noticed pictures all over the walls, pictures telling the history of Zimbabwe. From the liberation struggle, to independence, there were pictures of all of the men who worked so hard to see Rhodesia become Zimbabwe. It was so interesting to see the pictures of these young men, so full of hope for their country! There were many pictures of a young Robert Mugabe. I wonder if he ever imagined that after 28 years a woman’s salary would be equal to half as much as one child’s school fees?
I walked into the bar of the hotel looking at the pictures and I saw Nkomo’s autobiography. Joshua Nkomo is one of Zimbabwe’s heroes and he is often called the Father of Zimbabwe. I have never read his book, as it is not that easy to find! I asked the price and it was way more than I would spend on it so I turned to walk away. When I turned a man in a wheelchair said hello to me. I greeted him and realized that he was a senator! He is the owner of the hotel and invited us to sit with him. We spent hours chatting about Zimbabwe, about our individual stories of how we have come to love this place so much. I realized as we sat together, that we are both fighting a battle in Zimbabwe, that we both have opposition, and that for both of us, the only way we will win is on our knees.
After I heard so much about the history of Zimbabwe, which I felt honored that he would spend so much time with me, I was able to speak life into his life. I pulled out my Bible and shared with him all of the verses that have been speaking to me about the situation in Zimbabwe. I wrote them all down for him so that he and his wife can be reading them and praying for their country.
He felt that it wasn’t safe for me to travel at night and gave us a suite in the hotel! He pulled down a copy of Nkomo’s autobiography and autographed it for me and told me to take it as a gift. He said that he didn’t believe that it was a coincidence that a missionary was sent to him that night and went on and on about how much he appreciated me. I felt so honored to get to share the Word with him, so humbled to sit in the presence of a man that has been in this battle since the 60’s, and so loved by God when I see in just a small way how he creates these amazing divine appointments.
I am going to bed feeling so encouraged. Yesterday I was wondering if I was running someone else’s race, if I was in the wrong place, outside of the calling on my life… today my heart feel’s wildly alive, trusting that I am doing exactly what I was born to do!
Please pray for this nation, pray for Zimbabweans, pray for my kids, and pray for me. Sometimes the opposition is overwhelming, but in moments like this I trust that anything I am going to do for God is going to be opposed, but that He who is in me is greater, strong enough to walk me through any opposition, if I am willing to feel some pain, but persevere. I know that He goes ahead of me, preparing the way!
P.S. Like all of our kids, Farai needs a sponsor. If you are interested in sponsoring Farai’s educational needs or the needs of any of our other families, please contact me through email at firstname.lastname@example.org His aunt is doing a great job of taking care of him, and after 2 years on the street I can tell you that it is so nice to see him looking like a kid! We only place our kids in homes where they will be loved and provided for (which is sometimes harder than it sounds!) Please let me know if you felt called to sponsor one of these homes!
Sunday, June 29, 2008
It is odd to me, how many people are emailing asking about the situation in Zimbabwe… for most of the time that I have been living here people couldn’t pronounce the name, or didn’t even know where it was; to be honest for the past couple of years, a few of my friends have even told me that I live in South Africa!! But now, Zim is getting international attention because of it’s political situation… the result of 27 years of Robert Mugabe’s reign.
What you are reading and seeing is true. People have been tortured, people have been beaten and people have died. My heart hurts at the way people have been removed forcefully from their homes, how they have seen their family members hurt…even their children.
What might be the biggest tragedy is that the news is not reporting the whole story.
The real story is that in spite of the immense difficulties, and increasing violence, that people have not given up hope. That there is a remnant in Zimbabwe, that remembers where REAL hope comes from. They know that it doesn’t come from politics, that is doesn’t come from foreign aid and outside opinions… that it comes from the only truth that ever existed.
There is a remnant of God’s faithful, obedient and loving children who continue to seek God’s face, they continue to praise Him, and most importantly they continue to ask Him to forgive even the people that kill those they love.
I firmly believe that the only solution for Zimbabwe is found in 2 Chronicles 7:14. It is a promise from God to His people and it says,
“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
That is a promise, from the Lord of Lords and the Prince of Peace. It stands firmer than any promise from any president, or even from the candidate who is being called “the man of peace” (Morgan Tsvangiri). The answer to Zimbabwe’s current “crisis” as the news calls it, will not be found in a politician, it will not be found in a global dialogue. It will be found when those of us, the remnant that remains, start to act as if we believe this promise.
This week I was blessed to be a part of a lot of prayer meetings. I believe that even though things seem to be bad here, that they are not nearly as bad as they could have been. I believe that although there is talk around the globe that Zimbabwe is facing a war, that the real battle begun a long time ago, and that it will be won by the remnant that is fighting on their knees.
I acknowledge and appreciate that there are people all around the world that are praying for Zimbabwe now. Please don’t stop. Your prayers are making a difference and you are making an impact!
We are standing strong, one the promises of the Lord.
I will ask for one specific prayer request, as you know, the focus of my work in Zimbabwe has been with the kids who live on the street. One of the things that is
happening in Zim right now is that a youth militia is rising up. It is rumored that some of the boys that I work with, whom we have not seen recently, may be involved. Whether they have joined up by force or on their own accord, I am not sure, not does it matter. These are boys that are very special, they are loved more than they know and the trauma that they could be experiencing could be devastating. Please pray for them. Pray that they remember who they belong to and that He loves them very much. Pray that the get home safely. Pray that few children are impacted and that Zimbabwe will humble itself, seek God’s face and turn from it’s wicked ways quickly.
Monday, June 23, 2008
I was supposed to go to immigration today. But reports are that it is not safe to go to town.... so I won't. I spoke with the man who is processing my work permit on the phone.
He sounded so happy to hear from me, that I really expected a miracle! (I know we are all praying for one).
What he said is, "You know that NGO's are suspended from working in this country."
I said, "Yes, sir. I have heard that, but you know I am expecting this permit miraculously."
He said, "Well, let me call downstairs."
"Are you still there?"
I said, "Yes, I am"
He said, "Well, they haven't closed your file. When the work can continue we will process your application and you will get a response."
Ugh, so no answer yet... but more time to keep praying!
I am still here, and we are still waiting for miracles. Your prayers are making a difference, as bad as it is, it is better than it could be.
Please keep praying for peace. The kind of peace that comes from God... the kind that doesn't make sense to our minds. The kind I have right now :-)
P.S. Taps and I sat at the piano today and praised God with all our hearts. That is what we do. We acknowledge who HE is and what HE can do, and we trust in that while we wait and see.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I made it safely back to Harare Saturday afternoon. I left Vic Falls on the train Thursday night. Friday morning I was in Bulawayo for the day.
God is so faithful, I had an amazing meeting with an artist couple who will be doing some workshops with our kids in September. They are really talented and committed to seeing positive changes in Zimbabwe.
As I walked through town in Bulawayo I found myself in the middle of the one things I am told to avoid in Zimbabwe. Walking through town I noticed an increased police presence, but because I hadn’t received any notification from the embassy about any concerns, I went about my business.
As I walked down the street, a bus passed by full of kids shouting Zanu-PF slogans. As I kept walking the presidential motorcade drove by. Then I noticed a lot more police and soldiers and before I knew it I was surrounded by people wearing Zanu-PF t-shirts and stickers. I was directly in the middle of a RALLY!!
I didn't panic, I know that I am protected by the power of an amazing God. As I walked with the people in their t-shirts, I prayed for peace and quickly ducked into a shop.
I went about my day, got on the train and continued on to Harare. God is so good.
Please pray for Zimbabwe. Pray for Zimbabweans. Pray for peace. Pray for God's solution, which is not always easy to see or understand.
I love you all, I am safe.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
I have been sick in bed since Saturday afternoon when we took Peter to the airport... I think it was a sickness that has been in the making for a while, because I was really not feeling well in Harare, but then we were so busy with Action and Glen was here and the Peter was here so I didn't have time to be sick and I was happy to have people from the States here, but as soon as we dropped Peter off I felt it hit me.
Ugh, 4 days in bed is enough to make anyone depressed.
My neighbors took such good care of me, checking on me, bringing me water and trying to make me eat, even though I couldn't keep anything down. I felt very loved.
Especially when I texted Lori and she called immediately. We spent some time on the phone so that I could cry and she prayed and already my spirits were lifted.
After that I had a few days of being in bed with just the Word. It is impossible to surround yourself in the Word and not feel loved!
Love is amazing. It changes everything!!
Saturday, June 7, 2008
I just wanted to let you know that I am safe. I am writing from Livingstone, Zambia where I will do some outreaches with Jimmy and Bethany (the new missionaries to Zambia) and Peter, who is here for a week or so.
I know that Zimbabwe is really in the headlines again, but I just wanted to let you all know that I am safe. I will be back in Zimbabwe in a couple of days, and I did not leave for fear of violence or of any threat to my safety. They are having a run-off for the elections and things are heated, there is violence and people are in a hieghtened state of emotion right now, BUT I want to ensure you that I have not felt any danger!
In fact, it is just the opposite, last night Peter spent the night at my house in Mkhosana, as he had just flew in and we were not crossing the border until today.
I cooked sadza and we ate dinner with Bheki and spent the evening playing cards with the kids in my neighborhood. Everything is as normal!
We stopped in Monde yesterday to see Mr Mpala and Mr Who and were happy to have us visit!!
I love and miss you!
Thursday, May 29, 2008
This year you can watch live on the internet at http://www.celebratelife.tv/
or you can try to catch us on GODtv.
So far the conference has been amazing!! The praise and worship, as always is so great that we don't want it to stop. The new songs that Pastor Bonnie and her son Jon have written make me so happy!
The teachings have been great, Pastor Tom's teachings regarding the kingdom of God have changed my life over the past year and I know you will see why, if you watch!!
PS, you might see me overcome my fear of the cameras and even do some interviews!!
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
I went downstairs to the appropriate office and explained who I was. The woman gave me a stack of letters and I flipped through them looking for my name. What I was were lots of letters, each representing a person who wanted to immigrate to Zimbabwe and use their skills in this place. Some were approved, others were denied. There was never an explanation for either response…. Just yes or no.
But my name wasn’t there.
I asked the woman and she looked up my file number. My file was sent to the board THIS WEEK. It will be reviewed on Tuesday. Then she said, “You know that you are not allowed to be in the country now.”
I explained to her that I understood, and asked her when I could return to get my results. She said next Friday. But then she dropped a bomb,
“I review the files as part of the board. I can assure you that you have a 95% chance of getting denied.”
She wanted to know what I would want to work in Zimbabwe, and I tried to explain it to her. She said, “I believe you have ulterior motives.” I asked her if she was a Christian. She got offended but said that she was. I explained that my story only makes sense if you know God and believe He calls people to certain places.
Now, I know that my God LOVES to work with those kind of odds. My heart knows that, my spirit knows it… but I am having to do a little convincing with my head.
So I sat down in shock and tried not to cry. She went about her business with other people in her office and chatted with her friends for a bit. The she looked at me and told me that the office was closing and I would have to leave.
Here is my internal conversation:
“Ok God, what now?”
So I sit
Then she says, “Ma’am, I am closing. You will have to go.”
“Ok God, what now?”
DON’T GO, ASK HER TO PRAY FOR YOU.
Oh come on… are you kidding me?
So I stood up and said, “I know that this might seem crazy, and that as an immigration official it might be out of the question, but since I know you are a Christian, as my sister will you pray for me? I can’t go out there and face the world, walk down the street, get on a bus and go home without prayer. My world is crumbling.”
She called another woman into the office and I got on my knees and she prayed for me.
The same woman that said she was doubtful I would get a permit that she was in a position to approve started her prayer like this,
“God, You know that you have called this woman to work in Zimbabwe.”
I believe in the power of prayer. I believe that as the three of us prayed in her office that the Spirit was moving, in all of us.
I also know that on Tuesday, my permit will sit in a file with a whole lot of others. That a group of 10 people will look at it. They will all have preconceived notions regarding American women, NGO’s, social workers, Christians and however else they see me in those papers.
I need you to pray with me.
I am in a position that I have heard others call a “crisis of belief”. I say that prayer changes things. I pray for others, I ask people to pray for me. Today I stand here having to really determine if I buy that or not.
There is a song that we sing at Celebration Church that goes like this:
Let us pray
Let our thunder pierce the darkness
To rearrange the world around us for the Lord
Let us pray