Saturday, December 29, 2012

Merry Christmas from Zambia

Christmas week was a full week for our family, with lots of fun and joyful relaxation as we celebrated the birth of our sweet Ellie and most importantly the birth of our Savior!  
Here are some pictures of our week!

Ellie turns 4!
Christmas Eve Dinner and celebration with our families and Zambian workers 
Dancing under the lapa

Precious kids!

All "the littles" as we call them

It was our honor to serve dinner to these faithful friends who mean so much to us!
Dailes, Pauline and Patronella

The young wives and children of our new workers

The gentlemen!
Movet, Terran, Luke, Lloyd and Tyson

Watching a few fireworks!

Opening a few gifts

Fun around the table

Early Christmas Morning
Happy Birthday Jesus!

Ellie excited about her presents!

Thomas and Gracyn
Caleb and Maddie

Showing off his Zambia Jersey
New Princess Dress and accessories!

Cool Wig!
Scary Elf??

 What a great day!  And so blessed!  Happy New Year Everyone!

A Large Visitor

Merry Christmas everyone!  We hope your holiday season has been a good one spent with family and friends.  Christmas here isn't the same as Christmas back home in the States, mainly because our family isn't here to celebrate with us.  But we did have a rather enjoyable Christmas day.

I just thought we would share this picture with you as it was an interesting addition to our holiday season.  Some workers here on the farm brought this little (I mean Big) guy over the other afternoon.  This is a monitor lizard.  The Lozi (a tribe located in western Zambia) call it Opani.  It's actually a delicacy in their neck of the woods.

Don't worry.  We didn't hurt this little guy.  Just kept him in the fire pit for a bit so the kids could see him and then let him go.

Monday, December 17, 2012


Something I never thought I would do: mechanical work on my car. I've never attempted much more than changing a tire or maybe my oil. So, today was a stretch.

About a week or so ago our car started acting up. It seemed as if we might have been the recipients of some dirty fuel. So, today I decided to remove the fuel tank to clean it out. I would normally prefer to send it to a mechanic for such a job, but here in Zambia that would leave us without a car for at least a week. So, I decided to do it myself.

It took half a day, but in the end it was a success. It turns out that the filter on the inside of the tank came off it's mounting allowing the grunge in the tank to pass to the engine.

Never thought being a missionary would require me to become a mechanic too!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Rainy Day

Sometimes serving God overseas is fun and exciting. And others it's difficult and sad. This is one of those days. Our best friends, the Ballentines, begin the long trek home to reunite with their family today. We will miss them dearly, but are so glad for our short time with them.

Sunday, December 09, 2012

Kids and Farming?

Two weeks ago, planting season finally arrived.  So, to say it was a busy time would be an understatement.  In addition to some of the demonstration plots we have here at the house, we were also busy assisting the school next door to us and planting a field at our ministry centre in Ngangula.  The kids got involved as well.

We decided that it would be good for them to learn the same program that we are teaching the village farmers.  We are proud at just how hard they have been working.  They literally spent two full days getting their small plot ready and planting the seeds.  And it was awesome seeing the excitement on their faces as they began to see the maize seed begin to sprout through the soil in the last few days.

When the maize is fully grown in a few months, we'll let them harvest it and sell it to a mill just up the road.  Great homeschooling project huh?

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Welcoming the Ballentines

We're sorry for the lack of posts lately, but we've been busy spending time with our close friends John and Carrie Ballentine.  They decided to take some time out of their busy schedule and come and visit us here in the bush in Zambia.  And we are sooooo happy to have them here!

John and Carrie are very dear friends who we've known since our days in college.  We've really grown up as families together.  We were married within 6 months of each other and then had all of our children close to the same times.  So, to say that this we've been looking forward to their visit would be an understatement.

Below is a slideshow of the rest of the trip to Livingstone and Botswana.  We hope to add more pictures and stories during their visit.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Asking for a Nation

In many Zambian circles, the Tonga people are considered to be a very simple people, not always respected, never expected to amount to much and definitely a group of people that could never be used to change a nation.  But as my friend and collegue Luke would say, that's a recipe for God to show up and do what He does best: "use the simple to shame the wise."

So, this past week, we met with Chieftainess Mwenda and that was exactly what we were praying for and believing God for.  Our hearts cry is that God would use the Tonga people to change Zambia and that he would use these same people to change Zimbabwe and beyond.  And we're extremely excited, because there is evidence that this is exactly what God wants to do.

Would you join us in asking for a nation?

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Let the Little Children Come

Today, as I was busy organizing in my little girls' room, Gracyn came in and sat down saying she needed to talk to me about something.  She told me that she's been feeling like God wants her to teach the kids in the compound behind us to read.  I thought that was great.  However, I immediately started to tell her that she would need to have a plan, some help, a schedule, etc.  - Mom, and her plans.

Gracyn was not deterred and asked me if she could just please go over there, ask one of our friends to interpret for her, and just do one lesson with whatever kids were around.  She had already made handwritten alphabet flash cards and had ideas for games and songs.  Precious.  So, of course I told her to go.  I decided I would just stay out of it and let her do her thing!

I went back there about half an hour later and found her there happily teaching this little group of kids.  She stayed there for over 2 hours and came home glowing about her lesson and telling me all about the kids who were there.  It left me just feeling so thankful.  We're always looking for ways for our kids to be involved when actually God is more than capable of laying things right on their own hearts.  Maybe we're seeing the first glances of the passions that He had placed in Gracyn's heart.

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Saturday Field Day

If you are receiving this post via email, CLICK HERE to view the video.

This weekend marks the beginning of a week of training.  This morning, at 8:00 am at our place we had over 100 visitors.  They came to learn more about Foundations for Farming, and more importantly how to honor God through farming.  We were encouraged by the excitement expressed by everyone there.  We spent about 3 hours walking them through how to lay out a field, mulching, digging and fertilizing the planting stations, planting, thinning and weeding.

Above is a video of the afternoon.  Our prayer is that some of those in attendance will take the principles in this program and start practicing it on their own farms.  To that end, we'll do follow-up as the growing season progresses.  So, the first one is down and we have 4 more through all of next week.  Pray for our sanity as we prepare and teach many people over the next week.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Something New

(If you are receiving this post via email, view the video by Clicking Here)

We've been busy over the last several months.  So, we're trying something new.  Here is a video update of everything happening with the ministry here in Chikankata.  We hope you are all doing well.  If you get a chance, take a look.  It's a little over 3 minutes, but very informative.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Doctor Whitfield

This afternoon little Gift was brought to our gate. He was playing with some other children when he had a small accident. He was cut right above the eye. His parents didn't know what to do, so they walked nearly 3 kilometers to bring him to us.

We are humbled at how much the community here has grown in their trust for us. And this was just a small example of that trust. This evening Gift's parents brought him back to clean and dress the wound again. Hopefully this little guy will get healed up soon!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Bad Hair Day

Note to self or should I say note to Thomas. Never start the process of a hair cut late in the day in Zambia. You just never know how long the power will be on.

We'll fix it this morning, but we were calling him George Jefferson all last night ; )

Friday, October 19, 2012

UK Visitors

The past 10 days we've been hosting some visitors from the UK. Trevor and John (2 on the right) were here constructing a percussion drilling rig for water well digging. And then Norm and Allison joined us the last few days of their visit. These are our friends from Honiton Community Church.

It turned out to be a very pleasant trip. Trev and John finished the rig and we began digging a well for the workers here on the farm. We even have been able to use our hand drilling system that was donated by a Sunday school class at Chapin Baptist. So far we've drilled between 3-4 meters and are hoping to find water at 20+ meters.

It was also nice catching up with Norm and getting to meet Allison. We're already looking forward to their next visit!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Short Term Team Development

One of the things that resonates with both the Whitfields and us is having Short Term Teams visit us here in Zambia to see and be a part of the ministry first hand. With that being said, we've begun development on the facilities for housing these teams. The first project: a shower house.

Here is a picture of Movet working on the soak away for the toilets. We've also just about completed our outdoor dining/meeting area. (pics to be provided in a later post).

If you or your church wants to come and visit, we'll be ready for our first teams this coming May. Contact us at to find out more. Cheers!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

It's Hot

Kerri took this picture and posted it to her facebook account.  But just in case you missed it and were wondering if it gets hot in Zambia during their summer months, just take a look.  October is turning out to be a scorcher!  I'm soooo looking forward to the November rains!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Drilling Rig

This week we have some friends visiting us from Honiton Community Church in the UK. These two men, Trevor and John raised the support and came up with the plans for constructing a percussion drilling rig that is affordable for villagers and effective at drilling water wells in excess of 100 meters in depth.

So, they've begun the construction. We hope to test the rig here on the farm later in the week and then begin to teach zambians how to fabricate similar rigs. Today, I've been learning all about welding.

On another note, it looks like our Internet situation isn't going to be resolved anytime soon. It appears like our provider is going out of business. If you need to get in touch with us in the meantime, please send emails to Thank you c

Thursday, October 04, 2012

An Autopsy

Firstly, please pray for our Internet situation. Our satellite Internet provider has been experiencing a nationwide outage for the past 4 days. I'm sending this update via phone.

Now, back to the intent of this post. The Whitfield's and our kids were invited to our friends (who is also our vet) home the other day for a very unique homeschooling lesson. They were invited to come and observe the dissection of an ostrich! This baby ostrich was being cared for by a local farmer and had died. So, Noleen had to determine the cause of death.

Not every day you get invited to an ostrich autopsy huh? The kids had a great time and learned a lot. And yes, they did determine the cause of death. It met it's first Georgia Bulldog Fan ; ). Just kidding. It actually ate some particular kind of hay that it couldn't digest and got all clogged up. Sad story for this little guy, but a great learning opportunity for for the kids.

Monday, September 24, 2012

The Holy Spirit is Always Speaking

Christmas (left) and his friend (right)

I wanted to share an encouraging story from our trip on Lake Kariba last week.  On our last day visiting the second fishing village, we had the opportunity to do some teaching.  As one of our friends was teaching about faith in Jesus and people were responding, I caught this guy out of the corner of my eye and felt like the Lord gave me a word for him.  His name was Christmas.  It was the first time that something like this had happened to me.

After finishing with the teaching, we headed to the lake to baptize those interested in professing their faith to their community by this act.  Christmas, was one of the few who were baptized that afternoon.  So, as he came back out of the lake, I grabbed an intrepreter and shared with him what I felt the Lord had laid on my heart.  I felt like God wanted him to know that he was being raised up to be a leader of faith in this small community and that he would be a strong pillar for Jesus.  And he received it with joy.

Now, jump ahead to the evening.  After some more teaching that night, I noticed Luke pointing at Christmas and grabbing an intrepreter to talk with him.  What you have to understand is that Luke didn't come with us to the village earlier in the day.  So, he had no idea that Christmas had made a profession of faith and been baptized.  And he didn't have any clue as to what I had shared with Christmas before this evening meeting.  But when I saw Luke heading his way, I kind of drifted his way to listen in on what he had to say.

What did I hear?  As Luke was listening to the teaching and looking at those in attendance, he felt like God had given him a word for Christmas.  As he shared, I heard the exact same encouragement that I had given Christmas earlier in the day.  He told him that God was raising him up to lead the people in this village.  I know Christmas must have been encouraged to hear this again, but I was encouraged as well.

But then as we got back to the boat and began to share about our experiences in the village, we were even more encouraged.  Because we learned that earlier in the day, before me, one of the other guys Harold, shared the exact same word with Christmas.  Three guys, unknowing of the others comments, sharing the same message to a new believer in the faith!  Isn't the Holy Spirit awesome?

As we talked about this experience, I couldn't help but think that maybe, just maybe, the Holy Spirit is talking a lot more than I think.  And maybe the reason I don't hear Him, isn't because He's not talking, but because I'm not listening.  Lord, let me be a listener!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Flying by the Seat of Her Pants

Must Read!!  Extremely funny story!!

During their visit recently, one of our friends here in Zambia shared a story that I couldn't resist sharing with you.  Now, let me set the scene.

Her and her young daughter were visiting some Zambian friends in Kalingalinga compound in Lusaka. Kalingalinga is like most other compounds.  Housing is in brick buildings with metal sheet roofing.  There is no running water.  Some have electricity and some don't.  And there is no indoor plumbing.  Meaning you use the toilet in a pit latrine (hole in the ground).  It is equal to one of the poorest and dirty environments in all of Africa.

Now, our friend (she'll remain nameless for protection ; )) was getting ready to leave from visiting one of their Zambian friends when her daughter told her that she had to go pee pee and couldn't hold it.  She planned on just opening the door to the car to shield people from seeing her daughter and letting her pee beside the car.  But her friend, being the gracious host that many Zambians are, offered to let her daughter use his family toilet.  So, they headed back to his home and into the back where the pit latrine was located.  As they entered, our friend picked her daughter up and just tried to hold her over the hole and let her do her business.

Immediately, after she started peeing, hundreds of flies began to fly out out of the hole.  Her daughter began freaking out because there were so many.  Then it happened.  As our friend was trying to keep her daughter calm and saying consoling words, she accidently inhaled one of those flies coming from the depths of the pit latrine!!!  That's when she began to freak out.  As she explained it, she was running through a million different ways she could expel the fly and cleanse her tummy.

As she told the story, we were all dying laughing, including her.  I know that everyone doesn't share our same potty humor, but I knew there would be a few who would appreciate this story.  So, here it is, shared with you.  Blessings ; )

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Lake Kariba Video

If you are receiving this post via email, please go to: to view the video.

I just finished putting the final touches on the video from our trip on Lake Kariba.  During this trip, we were able to visit with two different fishing villages and share the gospel through the Jesus Film and through other teaching.

It was such an encouragement to see the Lord work over the course of this trip.  Not only did he reach quite a few Tonga speaking Zambians and change their lives for the better, but he also touched several of the team members in very specific ways.

In each village, we saw key individuals give their lives to Christ, individuals that we believe God will use to change their village and beyond.  It was also neat to see how God used the different giftings of the team members involved in the trip to reach these dear people.

If you get a chance, take a look at the video.  It's only a little over 4 minutes, but gives a very good highlight of our time on Lake Kariba.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Amon and Kenneth



On our 2nd day on Lake Kariba, we visited a small fishing village on the Zimbabwe side.  Upon our arrival, we were greeted by a familiar friend of our hosts Bruce and Sue.  His name was Amon.  Bruce and Sue have been making these trips for a few years now and had visited this particular village the year before.  During this trip, they first met Amon.  He was a notorious drunk who used fishing as a means to provide for his habit.  Amon, became a follower of Christ then.  So, Bruce was interested to see how he was doing.

To his and our joy, Amon was doing great!  He was completely clean from his addiction and had an amazing joy about life that wasn't there before.  Something that truly couldn't have happened outside of the grace of Jesus taking over his life.

In addition to the encouragment we received upon meeting with Amon, we also met another younger guy named Kenneth.  After we showed the Jesus film and then later met to speak with him, it was evident that God was doing a work in his heart.  He said that he wanted to follow God and have a relationship with Jesus, but he felt like he had been tormented by spirits.  So, we began to pray for and with him.

And as we prayed, God began to work.  By the time we were done, Kenneth's whole demeanor had changed.  We now saw a man with Joy in his heart because of the invading work of the Holy Spirit.  Afterward, we went down to the rivers edge (a river filled with crocs) and Kenneth, Amon and a few others who had made professions of faith were baptized.  It was definitely an encouraging start to the trip.

Please pray for Amon and Kenneth.  They are the start of a small group of believers in this fishing community.  They have been given scripture and training materials, but pray that the Lord would uphold them as they grow in their faith.  Pray that He would use them to bring others in the village to faith!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

The Cat's out of the Bag

We try not to talk about Nzoka (Snakes) on our blog just so the grandparents don't worry, but somehow they found out about this one.  So, since they already know, here is a picture of an 11 foot rock python that was brought by the house a few weeks ago.

Kennedy, one of the farm workers, had his friend bring it by to show the kids.  As you can see that's one big snake!  This particular snake was killed on a neighboring farm.  The zambians use an oil that is found in the python for helping with ear infections.

Pretty cool huh?

We're back!

We had a wonderful time serving the Tonga's of Zimbabwe on Lake Kariba the last 6 days.  I hope to write several updates on our trip, but just wanted to let you know we're back home and it was a great trip.  God showed up in many ways and ministered not only to the Tonga's, but also to many who were on our team.

Updates to follow!

; )

Friday, September 07, 2012

Disciple Ship

Well, the conference is over and we're now on the waters of Lake Kariba heading to a small fishing village to do Jesus Film outreach. We'll living on this boat for 6 days!

We're extremely excited about how God will use our team these next few days. Thomas is also having a blast. He just got to jump off of the 2nd story of the boat into the croc infested waters. Don't worry Grammy and Mimi. We're far enough off shore that we don't have to worry about them.

Anyways, the conference was amazing! I'll update you on it soon. I just wanted to give a little post for now to let you know where we are on our journey.

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

We've Arrived

It was a heck of a trip to say the least, but an experience I won't forget for the rest of my life. Luke, 4 friends from up north, Thomas and I drove to the Zambia/Zimbabwe border hoping to make the remaining 5 hours of the trip after clearing immigration. What we didn't know was that we didn't have the proper paper work for the car. We were told that we could go through, but that the car had to remain at the border.

So, we had two options: taxi (which the taxi driver was trying to take advantage of our helpless situation by asking for $350) or minibus.

Now, for those of you who don't understand the minibus scene in Zimbabwe, let me explain. These buses are usually in terrible shape and are known for breakdowns. They usually have seats for 13, but somehow the conductors find a way to fit 20. And people aren't always the only passengers (i.e. Chickens, goats, etc.). But missionaries are brave (and also poor). So, we chose the minibus.

To make a long story short, our bus was overcrowded and someone was transporting dried fish (smelly), but we did finish the journey in a little under 14 hours! We're now here at the conference having a wonderful time connecting with friends and making new ones. But we'll update you on that in another post. Just wanted to give you a quick update on our crazy African travels.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

A Quick Update

Its been a busy several weeks and we want to update you on everything, but for now, we'll just give you some quick hitters.  The next 3 days I'll be in Zimbabwe for a conference with Foundations for Farming and then the next 7 will be helping some other missionaries do outreach on the lower Zambezi river to the Tonga people.  We will be showing the Jesus Film in various villages on the river using a boat for our sole mode of transportation.  After our return, I'll try to properly catch this blog back up-to-date.

But for now, here are some of the exciting things happening in ministry here in Chikankata:

  • Chieftainess Mwenda and her family have donated a plot of land in Ngangula village for the purpose of us developing a ministry centre.  We hope to plant our first demonstration plot by October and I hope to be getting out there to train local pastors using Firm Foundations chronological bible training.
  • We finished our first lesson with students from Terranova Basic School in agriculture and biblical discipleship.  The students learned about composting and how it relates to God being a God who doesn't waste.
  • Tuesday's Chronological bible study with the farm workers here on Marula Farm is still going strong.  We're through the first 8 lessons and have a very large weekly attendance.
  • We're finalizing plans on short-term team housing and will begin development soon.  We hope to host our first Stateside teams beginning next summer.
Like I said, it's a brief update, but in just over 10 days, we'll try to give you more detail.  Bye for now!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Jesus Loves Little Muslim Boys

Had to share this blog from one of our friends in Lusaka working with street kids.  I hope it's an encouragement of the great love the Father has for everyone of us!!!


A few months ago I was talking to a little Muslim boy about Jesus.  For our purposes lets call him Mustafa.  

I asked him “What do they teach you at mosque about Jesus?”  Mustafa’s big brown eyes grew enormous and full of fear.  He said “DON’T EVER SAY THAT NAME!!!!!!!  I AM NOT EVER ALLOWED TO SAY THAT NAME!”  Of course I was curious as to why a little innocent 7 year old should be so afraid of the name that we know brings life and healing.  

He proceeded to tell me a story that is taught to the children in his mosque.  They are told a very graphic story of a man who was tormented to his grave by a snake because he preached about Jesus.  When the man realized the snake was after him he asked for help and no one came to his rescue.  

    AWEFUL RIGHT!!!!!!!!?????

This poor child was SCARED!  So I  gently explained to Mustafa that the name of Jesus is a beautiful name and that there is safety in it...that Jesus wants to be Mustafa’s best friend and that he is loved.  I gave him a homework assignment...ask Jesus to show himself in a special way to prove that He is real.  

This happened about 2 months ago. 

I haven’t seen the boy until today. Excitedly I asked Mustafa “Did you do the homework I gave you?”  With a big grin on his little face he said YES!  The first thing I noticed was that he kept repeated the name of Jesus!!  Then he told me a story that had my jaw on the floor.  

Two months ago he was left alone in the house with a babysitter.  The house was dark (the electricity was probably out) the parents and the older siblings were out and the sitter had fallen asleep.  Mustafa was feeling lonely and unloved so he went out into the backyard and said “Jesus if you are real show yourself to me!”  

Suddenly a light appeared in the dark yard and a voice whispered to him


I must admit at this point the skeptic in me began to raise its ugly head, but God was quick to quiet my mind and allowed me to really SEE the boy's face.  In his eyes was a light that wasn’t there before.  In his eyes was a wonder at the beauty and majesty of what he had witnessed. 

When I asked him how it made him feel, he said “It made my heart feel warm and happy and peaceful”.   


I then asked him if had told his parents what happened.   He told me that no, he hadn’t because he was afraid that his parents would think he was insane.  

Mustafa hopes the Jesus will speak to him in his dreams!  WOW!!!!

I didn’t feel a release to ask him if he wanted to accept Jesus yet.  I know that it will happen in God’s timing and in a way this precious little boy will know is personal just for him.  

Pray for Mustafa and his family!  Pray that Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and the Light will reveal himself to the entire family.  

Monday, August 13, 2012

Finally Landed

(Prayer of Dedication for Ministry Centre Land - with Chieftainess Mwenda and village headmen)

The day we've been waiting for has finally come and it took us by surprise.  This past week, while doing a clothing distribution for vulnerable children and widows, we were invited into a meeting with the chieftainess and 20 of her headmen.  We originally thought it was just to give them some blankets for the cold season.  But when the meeting began, they informed us that they had chosen a piece of the chief's family land to give us for a ministry centre.

Needless to say, we were extremely excited and happy and humbled.  After we discussed our intentions and how we hoped to use the property to minister to the needs of the Tonga people, they took us out to the property for a viewing.  The land turned out to be about a 50 acre plot in the middle of an area called Ngangula.  It's located just behind a local school and in the middle of a rather large community.

After walking around the property to identify the boundries, we all gathered to pray over the land and dedicate it.  A few of us prayed and then Chieftainess Mwenda, as the chief and local leader, gave it her blessing and prayed over it as well.  So, things should be picking up soon as far as ministry is concerned.  Over the next few months, we will be diligently working to implement a foundations for farming program as well as begin to develop the property.

We hope to identify and move a Tongan family out to the property to oversee its operations.  We also hope to get a portion of the property ready for this coming planting season.  Lots to do and little time to do it, but we are extremely excited about the opportunity and potential.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Village Ministry

(CLICK HERE to view the video)

This week we've been hosting some friends from Texas and, while they were here, we held a few outreach events.  The link above is a short video of our time spent ministering to widows and orphans in Ngangula (home of our future ministry centre) and a village near the chieftainess' palace.

Instead of sharing all of the details of the afternoon, I thought I might share just one encouraging testimony.  We started the day by meeting Chieftainess Mwenda and driving to two villages within her chiefdom.  After handing out clothes and blankets to the widows and orphans at the first village, we had a time of prayer.  We were actually behind schedule and just planned to say a "blanket" prayer for all in attendance, but there were many who requested that we stay and pray one-by-one.  This meant that the people in the next village would have to wait, but we felt like the Lord was in it.  So, we stayed and prayed.

We ended up breaking into groups of 2-3, each with an intrepreter, and began praying for everyone who remained behind.  (On a side note, it was so refreshing seeing Chieftainess Mwenda volunteer to be one of the intrepreters.  Culturally, this is not normal, because it gives a connotation that the interpreter is placing themselves underneath the one speaking, which a chief should never do.  But she did and I'm sure it spoke more to the heart needs of these people than anything we could have said or done.)

One lady, whom Kerri and I prayed for, complained about poor hearing and back pain.  Specifically, she said that she had a constant ringing sound in her ears and that her back and leg hurt her so much that she couldn't move very well.  As we prayed, I put my hand over one of her ears and literally felt like God was doing something.  We then prayed for her back and said Amen.  When we opened our eyes, our interpreter asked her if anything was different.  She said that the ringing in her ears had stopped and that she could now hear much better than before.  But she also said the back pain was still present.

So, we decided to pray again.  Our intuition was saying that if God wanted to heal one thing, he probably would heal the other.  So, we asked her if we could pray for her again.  As we were praying for her this time, her back popped.  And when we opened our eyes again, her demeanor had completely changed.  She was smiling from ear to ear.  Our intrepreter asked her what she felt and she said that her back popped and the pain went away!  She began bending twisting side to side and bending over to touch her toes.  Then she started dancing!!!  Needless to say, we were completely encouraged.  Isn't God awesome!

The next post will be about another really neat thing that happened this day.  In the mean time, we hope this story will encourage you that God still is in the business of healing, and that He can use ordinary, imperfect people to minister his love to those around us!

Friday, August 03, 2012

A Village Under Attack

Yesterday afternoon Luke and I were asked to visit and pray with a friend of ours who was sick.  He has been having severe stomach pains for 2 months and was having difficulty eating and even sleeping at night.  The village where he stays is about 30 minutes out in the bush.  So, we hopped on the motorbikes and headed out there.  When we arrived, we were greeted by the entire family, which lives in this small village of some 6 or 8 huts.

Typically, when we are asked to come and pray for someone, we usually ask a lot of questions first.  Our experience has shown that sicknesses are not always caused by of bad germs or inhospitable living conditions.  We've actually seen individuals and families that have been sick because of their involvement in witchcraft.  Why do we know this?  Because when we've prayed for these dear people, they have been instantly healed after we prayed against the spiritual forces that were attacking them.  This is not to say that a demon is behind every corner.  There are those sicknesses that have their root in natural causes, but there are those that don't.  So, before we prayed with this family, we asked a lot of questions.

As we sat there and talked with the family, from the grandmother to the grandkids, we learned that this sickness was not the only one that had been impacting this family.  We found one precious little boy with a shriveled hand (pictured below) and another baby with swollen lymph nodes.  But we also learned that there had been over 15 children, youth and young adults that have died over the last several years.  We learned that the grandfather, who is now deceased, was heavily involved in witchcraft.  And we learned that the village next to them, who they were constantly fueding with, was involved in witchcraft as well.

Needless to say, there were a lot of signs that the issues that have been plaguing this family might, in fact, be spiritual.  Had we gone there and just prayed for the sick, we might have missed the root of the problem.   We might have put a bandaid on a wound that needed stiches.  But we believe that we dealt with the root yesterday.  Before leaving we were also able to setup a meeting between the villages and will return sometime soon to see if we can help reconcile this relationship.   So please be praying for that meeting.

Please also join us in continuing to pray for this family.  As you can see it is quite a large family.  Pray that the early deaths and sicknesses would end.  Pray that their involvement in witchcraft would finally stop and that Jesus would take center stage.  And pray for the future generation, the young children.  Pray that they would be a generation that will impact this community with the gospel for years to come!