Greetings from Malawi,
As spring comes into bloom in the USA, we are preparing for our winter in Malawi! That’s right, we have just finished the hot, rainy season and are heading into the cool, dry season. The fields are full of maize (corn) and people have begun to harvest their crops. The hunger season is almost finished and there is rejoicing in Malawi.
The last couple of months have been very busy for me. I am so thankful for everyone who has been praying for me! God has kept me healthy and given me the strength to get things done! Living in Malawi has been a blessing and a challenge all at the same time. But God has been so faithful! We truly serve an amazing God who stands beside us through all the ups and downs. There are days when you question why has God asked me to do this task? But then God gently reminds me of the purpose of why I am here. One of the many things I do in Malawi is overseeing 10 Orphan Rescue Units. One of the staff shared a story about one of our kids at the Unit and I would like to share it with you. It touched my heart and I hope it touches yours as well.
Eleneo is a 9 year old boy in about 1st grade. His guardian brought him to our House of Joel Rescue Unit. Eleneo had a massive wound on his leg that was not healing. His guardian had taken him to a couple different local clinics but the wound was not healing. The facilitator wrapped it up and prayed with him. When Eleneo came back to the Unit a couple of days later the wound looked just as bad. The staff asked him some more questions. Finally, after several days the facilitators figured out what was wrong. The wound had not been healing because the boy was involved with heavy witchcraft. Some older boys in the village had been using his blood for ceremonies and even cutting the wound deeper every time it started to heal. The facilitators prayed over his wound and told him not go back to the ceremonies any more. The next day Eleneo showed up at the Unit with a big smile on his face! The wound had started to heal in the night! Eleneo prayed and ask Jesus Christ into his life the following week. He has been coming to the Unit every day to learn more about God. In fact, I just called the staff to find out how to spell his name so I could share his story with you. The facilitator had just finished praying with him. He normally stays at the Unit till dark and then walks home. Please pray for Eleneo and for all the other children that get caught up in the strongholds of witchcraft in this nation. I praise the Lord for the change in this young boy’s life!
Eleneo is just one of many children being reached in Malawi, not just with the physical needs but also the spiritual as well. We have over 40 hard-working Malawian missionaries, who have come through our Bible School and seek to serve the Lord in their own country. Every day they challenge me in my walk with the Lord. They are a wonderful blessing to me! As the leader, I am supposed to be the one teaching them. But more often it seems like I am the one learning and they are the ones teaching. Pray for our national staff in Malawi as they are out in the village teaching, training and shining the light of Christ in their own country. They truly are some remarkable men and women of God.
Well, after seven months of being in Malawi it is time for me to head back to the USA! By the time you read this, Lord willing, I will be back in Florida. I am leaving April 26th to fly to PA for a couple days and then down to Florida for Boot Camp. I will be leading a Teen Team back to Malawi. The team is going to travel to different Rescue Units and offer medical help. They will also be helping with our national Boot Camp. This year we will be running three Boot Camps in Malawi. This summer is going to be very busy; there will be two US teams and three Malawi Boot Camps running all at the same time! I will then bring the team back to Florida. I will be leaving the Malawi Base in the hands of another couple while I am gone.
In March of last year God brought a wonderful, godly young lady into my life named Bethany, who was also going to Teen Missions Bible School. We started to court in September, and no sooner did we start to court than God called me to go to Malawi for a time. She has been faithful while I have been gone and I can’t wait to see her. She is now in her final term of Bible School. Even though we have been away, God has allowed us to continue in our relationship. Praise the Lord for email and Skype! This coming fall, Bethany and I are hoping to take make the second most important decision in our lives. Nothing is official yet, as I have not been home to ask her a very important question. But Lord willing, at the end of this month, Bethany will have something on the finger of her left hand!!
Thank you so much for standing with me in your prayers and support. I could not do this alone and every day I thank the Lord for sending people to stand with me. I know for many of you it is a sacrifice to give! I am truly touched and humbled by your gifts. Thank you also for all the letters and card I have received while in Malawi! They are a breath of fresh air to a missionary. I look forward to seeing many of you while I am home.
Serving Christ Together,
2 Cor 4:16-18
For my health and safety
For the ministry in Malawi
For the life changes God has in store for me
For safety as I travel with the US Teams this summer
For wisdom in handling the Boot Camps and summer teams
For my relationship with Bethany. That we would both seek after the Lord and focus on Him.
For the many changes that will be happening in my life