It is my privilege to bring you a report of our recent successful Mission to Zambia.
Intense Ministry in Rough Terrain.
Having less time available to us than would have been ideal, we hurriedly scrambled across the harsh terrain, bouncing over rough, rugged, rocky, broken, bumpy roads in our four-wheel drive vehicle in order to make the best use of available time. The roads seemed to be buffeting, and jarring our vehicle as we drove across the turbulent, raging, wild land of Africa.
We had our minds set on the goal before us to accomplish the objectives which were laid before us.
“But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on…”
“Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our Faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the Cross.”
Having left behind us our dearly loved ones, homes and family, our team of four set out to fulfill the Great Commission of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
We travelled over 7000km’s, delivered valuable Leadership and Discipleship training material to Chavuma Mission, assisted veteran missionary uncle Bob Young, with various practical and mechanical needs, we equipped and trained evangelists and spent a week in Loziland evangelizing among the lost, showing the ‘Jesus’ film, and distributing Gospel literature. We were also able to use a motorboat to reach many villages that are very neglected being even more inaccessible. We had many good opportunities to effectively share the Gospel message with these tribal people. Our four-wheel drive vehicle got stuck a few times in the marshlands of Lukulu West. We spent four hours getting the vehicle out of the mud and seven hours to get out of the river. Our vehicle had eight flat tires, had some of the windows in the canopy shattered due to load-shift on the bumpy roads, and needed the prop-shaft center bearing replaced because of the rugged terrain. Some of our team members were ill for a while, but still pushed on with the mission responsibilities despite the discomfort.
When we were last up in this part of Zambia in April this year, we saw the tremendous needs that the folk at Chavuma Mission have. So, this time we came with specific objectives and were able to help relieve some of the burden that this Mission has to carry with desperately few staff.
Some of the items that we were able to work on and repair included the milling machine, which is used for grinding corn to feed the hospital patients, a freezer, a geyser, one vehicle, a diesel injector pipe for another milling machine, some electrical wiring, and theatre lights in the hospital.
On Sunday we had the opportunity at the Worship service to each bring an encouragement or exhortation from God’s Word.
Our team was also able to assist by transporting some medical supplies and cement to a mission post about 100kms into Angola.
We delivered vital and valued Discipleship and Leadership Training material as well as Gospel literature and Evangelism training material to the leaders of Chavuma Mission.
On our way back south to Lukulu, we had the opportunity to equip a pastor and evangelist with some valuable training literature and Gospel material. We also showed the ‘Jesus’ film in the Lozi language in Watopa which attracted a large crowd and the Gospel was clearly proclaimed afterwards.
We had many good, effective opportunities to share the Gospel Message of Reconciliation with these tribal, rural people of the remote floodplains of Loziland. Sometimes our team members had to wade up to chest height through the swamps to get to some of the villages. There is a deep hunger for God in this area and our message was received well. We thank God for those who turned from sin and trusted Jesus Christ as Saviour.
“God reconciling…sinful man…to Himself through Christ”
We had our prayers answered and dreams come true with the addition of a motorboat on the water during this Mission to Loziland. You will most likely have been aware that we have been praying for a boat in order to multiply our effectiveness in Lukulu West. The boat proved itself to be a most effective tool for ministry in this area. We were able to share the Gospel with many folk at various villages along the banks of the Lungwebungwe River and its many tributaries.
Our team split up into a waterborne team and an overland team. This way we were able to double our effectiveness.
Mired in the Marsh
The four-wheel drive vehicle worked hard carrying us faithfully over the harsh terrain from village to village, though on more than a couple of occasions, the terrain almost literally engulfed her. We once got stuck in the mud, with the axles and under-carriage dragging in the mud. Though we could use the winch to aid us in liberating the vehicle from the mud, the cables and rigging straps snapped a few times before the mud finally surrendered and let go. It took us four hours of digging, lifting, jacking, and rigging to eventually pry our vehicle out of the mud.
Although to us this seemed like a terrible waste of time, God used this trial to direct us to a village where there were some folk who eagerly responded to the Gospel Message with hungry hearts for God.
Stuck in the Water
The vehicle also got stuck more than once in a river-crossing with water filling up the inside of the cab to almost level with the seats. Fortunately another vehicle was able to tow us out of this situation, but this only after hours of desperate attempts to free her.
Can These Bones Live?
We were standing on the banks of the Zambezi River observing a human skeleton when I recounted the words in Ezekiel 37 “Can these dry bones live?” One of our team members picked up on these words and ceased the moment, taking the opportunity to preach the Gospel to the group of locals gathered around who informed us that this man was a thief and died by means of witchcraft or voodoo magic. Many turned away unchanged by the message, but one man was challenged and surrendered to Christ.
Overall, this was a successful Mission having accomplished all our objectives and having seen lives changed as a result of our meager efforts. The schedule was jam-packed full of activities and we came home feeling like we’d done two months’ work in just under one month.
We weren’t given any time to recuperate or rest, but were immediately thrust into preparations for the next vital Mission – an Overland Mission to Sudan. There are many opportunities and the doors are wide open to serve the people of newly independent South Sudan and this is a crucial time. Our objectives will be to resupply, equip and train pastors, chaplains, evangelists, teachers, and medics. This mission will require me to use my newly acquired four-wheel drive vehicle which needs a lot of work to make it ready for such a long overland mission. Please pray together with me that the necessary funds would be supplied in order to make this mission a success for God’s Kingdom.
Thank you for all your prayers and support. May God richly bless you for remembering me in this work.
I praise God for the many opportunities that I have to serve Him and His Kingdom and the many lessons that I can learn while serving.
Thank you for your continued prayer and support.