Four years, and still searching for the foundations…
“And he went out… not knowing where he would go… living in tents… looking for the city with firm foundations whose Architect and Builder is God.”
God spoke to us years before to “go” – we didn’t have much more than that. Then in my struggles to trust Him, He was so gracious to give us indisputable signs that in fact, it was all true – He was leading us and would provide for us by His hand. I asked for a sign once when on a beach prayer trip – show me a completely whole sand dollar – without a single chip – and I will believe. That day I scoured the beach while praying – one sand dollar – well it had a bit of a hole in it, but not too big. I went to my tent rejoicing. But that night I started complaining again – God, if I am to give up my good ministry, sell my home, leave my family, forsake all I have built for years – you gotta give me better than an “almost” sign! I want a real miraculous sand dollar with not a single chip in it! The next day He gave me 38 such sand dollars! And I could have kept going but I had expended all my energy praising God! Now God spoke clearly – “As you have seen the provision of the sand dollars, even so I will provide abundantly for your every need. I will bless you and all of your dreams will come to pass with my power. The only limit to my blessing is your physical energy to receive it. As long as you are able to take another step, I will be there to to bless it!”
I look at this place God has given us – a most lovely retreat-center-like grounds on the mighty Zambezi. The buildings , gardens, the House of Moses, the streams and dam and water and solar systems, hippos – all are a reflection of God’s powerful hand, fulfilling what He put in our hearts years before. We have our housing nearly complete – well, at least phase #1: one cement and one mud house, along with three large tents on concrete slabs. We need only a kitchen and improved toilets and showers. This is our 5 day a week camping trip each week, but then we return to our Livingstone house. Well, today I gave our 3 month notice on that lovely house in Livingstone! We will move out to the village base and make it our full time home.
And now we have a second such site in Northern Zambia!
We struggled for 3 years with hardly a convert – just some few who tolerated us. Only after a year did we discover that our people were considered “Unreached People Group” by missions experts – we estimated about .5% were believers. But that has changed. One got miraculously born of God’s Spirit. He told a friend who found the same miracle. And it snowballed from there. Now, in just this year, there are over 50 who are worshiping God! God is truly at work. We believe that these believers will take this message to their family and neighbors. We are training them to lead studies and evangelize – indigenous church planting! Currently we have 5 such gatherings, but we are looking for the day when there will be worshiping home gatherings in each village – all led by these people themselves, singing and speaking in their own language. This language WILL be represented around the throne!
In our first year here we were given a $25,000 donation and immediately built our first Children’s Home. Filling it with children and qualified staff has been hard work, but more beautiful than we imagined. There are no lack of desperately needy children – 20% are orphaned of one or both parents, and many more the casualties of broken homes. Here, too often when a man “marries” (or comes to live with) a woman with previous children, he will reject them, and they bounce from relative to relative, hoping for a decent home, but often not finding. Especially in the village, where poverty dampens hospitality and replaces it with the cruel task master of survivalism. School is a luxury. Even a blanket or one meal or a pair of shoes is more than can be expected. These soon become the despised ones – the “extra mouth to feed” – and they suffer even more. Read the bio’s of some of the children – read and weep! House of Noah Bio’s
So it is amazing to us that we could not fill this House of Moses many times over with such children. Last week we heard of a child whose mother abandoned her for another man, the father had never been in her life, 10 years and never yet to school. Could we help her? NO!
A month ago we asked the mother of a 10 year old boy – she was willing, but her new husband would not hear of it – though he is the one who mistreats the child, does not allow him to eat or go to school – “none of my children went to school – neither will he”. But today I find that she has divorced the man and has come to us right away for help. And we are hearing many more calls for help from town where there is not such primitive fear of the white man.
Our prayer is to double our capacity again this year – with a new duplex for 20 more children.
And we are making the fine details now on a program where each of you can “adopt” one of these children from our homes, or from the village that are also very needy. These can be “adopted” – around your Family Table where you will pray for them daily, write them letters, support them monthly – and we will give them monthly food parcel, send them to school, tutor them and feed them spiritually, give them your letters and a hope that perhaps their life can improve. You cannot imagine what that would do for these villages! Now, one kid in 100 go to 12th grade. The a cast off orphan going to 12th grade? No way! But you can make that happen. Here is the link: Family Table/
In our N Zam base they have a flourishing church growing there, but need a building (they already have a beautiful plot of land) to run kids programs, training of leaders, Sunday Celebration Gatherings of their 6 or more bulging house churches.
But we will need a new level of Western and African volunteerism – both for the southern and northern Love’s Door sites. This is a big faith step for us. Pray for us. Adopt a child. Or three! Serve with us. Longterm. Or a year. There is admin you could do from your home. Write us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to find out more about any of these action steps.
HOW TO PARTNER
We have some big plans for this coming year. Family Table sponsor program, new duplex children’s home, moving to the base, a gathering place structure in N Zam. We want to see every one of our African staff – north and south – earning a small salary from businesses. We want to see the village churches – north and south – growing more indigenous leadership and multiplying in every way. We are planning a powerful Livingstone recruiting and training program. We have some large teams coming from supporting churches. And perhaps a team of builders to move us forward quickly.
We still feel there are some crucial gaps in our long term staff. Please pray if you, or someone you know, should come. A three week training in Kansas City is cheap, easy, and some of the most paradigm shifting, life changing stuff you can imagine. All Nations/
Many of you support us regularly – well, fairly regularly. We just got a new function with Paypal that will sign you up of automatic payments from your credit or debit card. Monthly Debit/ Of course once off donations are very welcomed too!
We just had our first person give a significant donation for our sponsorship program – while it’s still not fully off the ground! If you want to jump onboard and be the first to choose your children to sponsor. Family Table Or if you would consider coming here to help the start-up of this amazing program – selecting children, feeding them, doing Saturday programs, visiting them, reading letters and transcribing replies… 3 month – 2 year interns desperately needed!
If you are a serious prayer warrior and want to start regular prayer for the Least in this world, and one of the spiritually darker places of this world – please write us – email@example.com
Please keep praying for our African staff – our desire/plan is to build a good business for them. Any business men or women who want to come and manage this – rise up!