Moving Forward and Upward
Words from the Heart
This is a new season! This is a new day! We are moving forward and upward in Jesus' Name.
Stagnation is repulsive - something to be spit out and never to be settled for. Jesus has more. So much more - for all of us. I don't want to miss out on the more. I want to have all that Jesus has in-store!
Sometimes circumstances seem to throw us for a loop or make us feel very uncomfortable - these are prime opportunities for us to break out of our cycle of wandering around the same mountain and to be propelled back into the direction of our destiny fulfillment. The destiny written in heaven for each of our lives by God Himself!
We are thankful to God for the opportunity to be shaken up both personally and as a ministry.
Sometimes to be shaken involves the Potter breaking and molding us into a more useful vessel fit for His noble purposes. The pounding and shaping of the clay is not only a messy and painful process for the mound of dirt itself but also very unattractive to those looking on. When the Potter's task is completed, though, there is an understanding of "why?"- for the end product is much more powerful, useful, valuable, effective and beautiful than its predecessor ever was. The new vessel forged by God Himself is ready to be filled again with His LOVE to be poured out to the nations (one valuable person at a time) so that untold millions will enter into His Kingdom.
We don't want to miss out. We don't want to be on the side lines. We want everything He has to offer and we want to co-labour with Him by being and doing all He has purposed for us.
Transitioning to the New Land
Last Saturday the girls and I had the opportunity of seeing the new land for the first time. We drove off of the main road in Chiwala (where our original land is) onto a side "road" where we continued on for about 20 minutes or so into the bush. We parked the car when we came to the path (seen in above far left photo) leading to our new land bordering the Congo. Local men had already began clearing a major portion of the land.
My first observations were the hard work and speed of the men doing the job for us and the extreme poverty of the area (mud and stick huts for shelter and mud dolls and cars for toys). The fact that there is no school or church along the entire dirt "road" we drove (and beyond) both saddened and excited me. I was asking Happy, "You mean no one goes to school in this area?" and "No one goes to church?" To both questions he replied, "No" while shaking his head back and forth with compassion in his eyes.
I was saddened that the people's life is the same day in and day out with perhaps little to no hope of ever getting out of their mundane work/eat/sleep cycle and perhaps no hope of eternal life through Jesus Christ. At the same time, though, I was excited, as I felt the LOVE of God for them so intensely. I knew that He was bringing HOPE to them by allowing us to be uprooted from our current place to come to them in Kasaba.
As I reflect on our time at our original mission base, I can see through the good and the bad, the happy and the sad, that God paved a way for the people in Chiwala to know Him and to come out of extreme poverty. Some accepted. Some rejected. But His LIGHT shone through the darkness and HOPE was made available to all.
Now He is giving NGM the opportunity to co-labour with Him by shining the LIGHT in the darkness of Kasaba Village. These precious people will also be given HOPE of the Good News of God's Eternal Kingdom.
Food for Thought
Sometimes the greatest harvests we reap, come out of the driest seasons of our lives.
As seen in the above photos, the easiest way to harvest fish from the ponds in Chiwala is at the end of the dry season. The water (a.k.a. "life") is nearly all evaporated and the fish have no where to hide. In the same way, it is often out of the Potter's remolding of our lives that the greatest harvests for His Kingdom are reaped.
B2S Alumni: Zooming in on Smart
My first memory of Smart (see him as a young boy on far left of above left photo) occurred on the day we first moved to Chiwala ten years ago (end of 2008). I was drawing water from the well and I guess he noticed I was struggling a bit so he ran over to help me heave up the container. From that very day he stayed at our home in Chiwala. It was as if there was something within him urging him to break out of the cycle his broken family had been caught up in (poverty, hunger, drunkenness, drug addiction) and propelling him onto another path. He knew there was something more to live for. From day one he was discipled as we had daily prayers. He was one of the earliest Back 2 School children the mission sponsored.
Fast forward a few years and let him tell his own story...
My name is Smart Chola, the son of New Gen Mission. I was born again on the 19th of September, 2008. I was doing Grade 7 at Chiwala Primary School. I am the only one in my family who finished Grade 12.
Before I came here to New Gen Mission I was doing wrong things in the eyes of God but when Pastor Happy and Evangeline came here in Chiwala, things changed for the good.
Now I am working with Back 2 School making sure everyone goes to school. My job is to see the B2S passing and you people you need to know that they are passing well.
So I need to work very hard so that they can pass their exams and end of term tests. I need to make sure everyone there is studying so that no one can get low results. Because they are studying hard, their results will be good.
I like it even up to now that you are still supporting me [he is payed monthly for his work as B2S Patron] and remembering me since I have finished school. So I want to step out in faith to do all that God has sent me to fulfill on earth. First of all I want to raise chickens so that when I go to Bible School I don't have to panic about the issue of money. Instead, I will even be able to help those who are in Church or anyone in need because not all the time it is I that has to be helped. Even the little things that I can manage on my own, at least those little things I should do them by myself. Please pray that God will be there in my business and in everything I do. God is my help.
The Lord is my strength and my shield. Psalm 28:7
Please look out for more updates on our B2S alumni in the weeks and months ahead!
Sunday School (a.k.a. God's Tribe) Facts:
Currently about 100 kids are coming
Currently there is only one full time teacher (she's a B2S alumni too by the way)
There are occasionally 1 or 2 helpers
Children are bused in from Chiwala and other settlements from the outskirts of town
The curriculum and teacher training is provided by KIMI
There is potential for lots more children to come - the harvest is so plentiful
More teachers and helpers are needed
A prayer covering for God's Tribe is needed
God's Tribe is moving forward and upward in Jesus' Name
Children's lives are being changed as they are discipled each week
Tomorrow (October 18) is National Day of Prayer and Fasting in Zambia. You are welcome to join in prayer for Zambia and New Gen Mission. And while you are praying please pray for Caia - she vomited three times today. We think it must be dehydration as it's been so hot. We praise God that she seems in good spirits, doesn't have a fever and is sleeping peacefully as I write. We praise God that there is power in the Name of Jesus to break every chain - even that of sickness! We praise God that the sky burst forth with rain this evening - cooling us all down! Rainy season has arrived!
Thanks so much to you for your love and prayers and financial support that enable us and encourage us to keep on keeping on in Jesus' Name. May you be blessed exceedingly and abundantly as you reach out in Jesus' Name.