Friday, August 17, 2012

Fully Living...

The past few months have been full. Busy, but full of joy, and we feel blessed and grateful to be fully living here in Mozambique! In July we had our annual SIM spiritual life conference. Tim and I were in charge of planning the whole thing and we decided to do it on the lake. We had a team from Blythefield come to speak and lead worship. It was a great week. My parents came and my dad was the speaker for the week. His theme was "True North", talking about where we go in the midst of life's frusterations. Do we go south and grasp to worldly things or do we go north to God and find our significance and security in Him? We also had the Radaz family come to lead worship. They were so good. Worship is something we miss greatly here, so it was such a great exprience to have such talented people to lead us in worship in English! My mom and Jennifer Radaz helped out in the kitchen and preparing food, which was quite a task when you are preparing food for 30 people and all the cooking is done over charcoal. Here are some pictures from the conference.
The Radaz boys leading us in worship.

The lake.

The "kitchen"

My mom and Jennifer also gave all the ladies a pedicure!

The finished product.

We also had Beth Layton here as an intern for three months, she ran a kids program for us at the conference. Our kids really grew attached to her over the 3 months she was here.
Traeger and his friends waiting to play a game.

Our family in front of a huge baobab tree.

The Radaz family. We really enjoyed these guys. In the two weeks we had with them, we just really grew to love each of them. They were so great and we are so thankful for their willingness to serve us here.

Daddy and Jurnee swinging on the beach.

I just love it when you capture pure JOY!

My parents stayed for another 2 weeks after the conference and it was so nice to have them here and have them involved in our life here. It was also good for our SIM team to get to know them. My dad completed a list of more than 30 jobs around the house and my mom helped me redo all the flower beds and gardens in our compound. It was so great to get so much accomplished. The kids loved having grandma and grandpa around and they loved the 8 suitcases of goodies they brought for them. Yes, 8 bags of stuff. It really felt like Christmas and everyones birthday all at the same time. Jurnee turned 6 months old while they were here and they loved getting to know her and her growing personality. Here are some pictures.

Jurnee enjoyed grandma and grandpa

Jurnee loves animals, just not getting kissed by them.

Jurnee and grandpa

 Grandpa seemed to have the touch when it came to naptime.

All smiles!

We also were able to take part in 2 baptisms this past month. In all we participated in the baptism of 10 new believers. At this one, Travis Radaz, was baptised along with 4 other local Mozambicans.

This is another picture of pure joy!

The group of believers gathering before the baptism for worship.

My dad even got to participate along with Tim in this baptism of 5 local Mozambican believers. It was a great experience and priviledge for him.

Sunset at the the lake with a woman carrying firewood on her head.

On the way to drop my parents off at the airport in Malawi, we stayed a night at Liwonde game park. We saw TONS of elephants. We went on a boat ride down the Shire River and it felt like we were in a National Geographic magazine!

We also saw tons of crocs and hippos everywhere.

We saw two herds of Cape Buffalo.



Sable Antelope

A pod of hippos with elephants in the background.

baby elephant

We ran into this guy just driving through the park and we really were this close to him. We just rounded a corner and there he was.

I also wanted to give an update on up coming ministry opportunity we have in the next few months. We will be busy. Tim will be doing a lot of travelling so please pray for safety and that I will be able to have patience being home alone with the kids much of the time. Also pray for soft hearts for the recipients of the teaching, that God would work in their lives and reveal Himself to them. Here is the schedule:

Aug. 16-19: Marriage seminar in Itepela, a village about an hour and a half from Lichinga. (Tim is currently there right now doing this.)
August 24-26: Tim will be doing a teaching at a church in Metangula, a village along the lake.
September 3-6: We will be doing a Simply The Story training for the church leaders here in Portuguese.
Sept. 15, 22, 29: We will be doing a parenting seminar on three consecutive saturdays in Mapuje, a village about an hour from Lichinga.
October 1-12: Tim will be going to Pemba, a city on the coast of Mozambique, to teach a two week Bible course on Old and New Testament Survey for a Bible School there.
Then the end of October we will all be travelling to Kenya for about 3 weeks to visit an Oral Bible School and see what it would take to get one started here. Tim will also be doing some training and teaching at local churches while we are there.