The story of Phil, Emily and Jessica in Africa continued. (See yesterday’s post for the first installment)
Sunday we rose with the sun and traveled through the waking city, soon we were out onto a flat valley. Driving through cultivated patches of green corn and trees I did not know the names of. We drove by many mud huts, over flowing streams and open glades. Reaching the ferry we parked and walked on as crowds of people pushed to get to shaded spots. We were heading to an island nestled offshore, an hour and a half up the coast.
Once on the other side we followed a dust-filled track and listened to worship as it greeted us.
I preached on the Cross – the power of Christ to set us free from sin, grief, sorrow and pain.
The tin roofed sanctuary became filled with the presence of God, as if the windowless structure had welcomed Him from every direction.
The front filled with many tears, the pains we feel in the UK and Canada are also in Africa – the cross released its power.
The last days of our trip were remarkable. Thirty very special friends gave their lives to Christ. Emily and Jessica spent more time helping at the school, packed classes, returning later with pleasure in their hearts.
An exciting conversation took place with a senior medical doctor, who, at the young age of 75 has given 40 years of his life to Mwanza. Healing, caring and driving the city strategy to build 17 clinics.
We became consumed and animated about a boat – a mobile medical clinic for the many hamlets that feed off Victoria.
The forgotten tribes, with no doctors, no gospel.
Old men dream dreams, young men see visions.
The doctor was dreaming for his region. He would talk to the local medical authority and do some research; did we just birth a vision?
It was 2001 and we had a handful of tiny lives in the preschool, now 2013, 400 in the school, 15 buildings and 22 staff.
God can do amazing things with a humble heart – a gospel heart.
Africa always does this, intoxicates you with faith, I’m drinking deeply for Kelowna and the church.
Finally, we traveled again in search of Promised Land, farmland to feed the orphans and the wider community. Some areas were grass green and smooth, short as a meadow that had just been mown. Other parts were uncultivated, dried up scrub. We were shown many drier patches that needed water to bring fruitfulness, not impossible with Victoria. So the search continues; meeting the right person at the right time, God’s time. The road was only a track, red hard clay but it lead to a small sandy, thatched village with no school and many children running around.
In these areas only a small amount are Christians. So we returned from the bush country with a number of offers of land from locals, over inflated prices that need to be talked about over the weeks and months.
Last night I sat and prayed watching the sunset over Lake Victoria, my thoughts and prayers turned to the church and the God given task ahead.
I conducted my final session with all the staff team – leadership, calling and good attitudes. They asked so many questions, thoughtful and helpful. Organizations are the same the world over; they need vision, clarity, God’s Spirit and people that believe that they can change the world.
We have really appreciated your prayers, support and emails over the past few weeks.
We are excited to see where the visions, prayers and thoughts of the last 10 days takes Living Waters.
And now…another mission to throw our lives into. Kelowna.
Have a great week,
Love , Michelle xoxo