Monday, July 28, 2014

Final Thoughts on Africa

One night we watched a sermon by Francis Chan as part of our American worship time. One of the things he was talking about is going out and making disciples. Many times, people (myself included) will say that they just don’t feel God’s presence. But one thing he pointed out is that the Lord gave us the Holy Spirit to be with us as we are making disciples and spreading His name. If we are not doing that, then why do we still expect the power of the Holy Spirit to be with us? One of the things I have noticed being in Zambia is the openness of the people to discuss their spiritual life. We can walk from village to village and ask them about church, God, etc. and they will just sit down and have long conversations about it. There is a place to pity a society with little to eat, ragged clothes, and an ignorance of God’s love. But I pity more the society that is so closed off to God that even when it is presented to them, they are too consumed with other things. It is not socially acceptable to talk about your religious beliefs openly. The void of Christ in people’s lives is being filled with television and entertainment. At least the people here understand a need for SOMETHING in their lives, even if they are putting their trust in the Law or in good works. That isn’t good, but it’s better than oblivion. At least they are open to learning, for the most part. Being amongst people with so many physical needs really accentuates that our only TRUE need is to know Jesus Christ as Lord. They can live with nothing, but if they know God, they have EVERYTHING. 
The lifestyle here in Zambia is so laid back and relaxed, I find it easier to take time to just listen and sit in God’s mercy each day. I’m convinced that an African sunset is the closest I will experience to being surrounded by God’s glory until I get to heaven. Each night it is as if God is painting a perfect picture in the sky. I just can’t get enough of them. 

One thing that has taken me off guard in my time in Zambia is my inability to wrap my mind around the fullness of God. How thankful I am for this lack of understanding. I do not want to worship a God that my mind can fully comprehend. 
Hearing these people sing worship in Tonga is amazing. The thing I struggle with is the inability of this language to express complex thoughts. One word could mean many things. I find myself wondering if the entirety of a concept is getting across to these people. Do they REALLY understand all of the message we are sharing? I have decided that only Christ knows our hearts, whether we are speaking English or Tonga. The Holy Spirit has the power to convict these people of what they need to repent of and the Holy Spirit will be with them to guide them in their walk with the Lord, just as He does for us. 

Lino mbuli mbumuli basale ba-Leza, basalala akuyandika, amulisamike moyo waluzyalo, buuya, lulifwiinsyo, lubombo, abusicamba. Amukazikilane myoyo yanu akulekelelana, na umwi ulijisi kaambo kumweenzinyina. Mbuli Mwami mbwaakamulekelela milandu yanu, anywebo amucite mbubonya obo. Nkabela kwiinda zyoonse amube aluyandano, ikuti luyandano ncecaanzyo cabuumi bulondokede.
Colossians 3:12-14

I felt the best way to express the things that were on my heart during this trip was to post a little bit of a journal entry from my quiet times. 

As I go home, I pray that the depth of my love would bring powerful emotion; that it would not just be a routine love but a passionate love straight from the heart. Lord, give me a forgiving heart so that I may be forgiven. Allow me to be comforting, Lord. You are the almighty comforter and I long to be like you. Allow me to be loving. The best part of knowing You is being able to have an intimate relationship with You. Use this love that is from You to restore the broken. Let that love radiate through me to all those around. Lord we know that Satan is lurking around every corner but that you have given me the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome evil. I do not want to be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. I come with a grateful heart. You have done so much for me that I take for granted. You have made a lowly sinner Holy is your eyes. I pray Lord that my every action would glorify You. That even in the mundane, your light would shine. This can only be done through your love and grace. I pray that my life would be so full of You that when I stand before your throne in Heaven, people will be able to boast in you because of me. Lord we know that your Word will never return void. Our futures are in your hands and you will always fulfill your promises. We can stand firm in Christ We have God’s seal of ownership and no one can take that away. We joyfully stand firm in Christ by faith. I pray that no matter where I am, that I would have a servant’s heart and be as effective as possible for Your name. That whether it is in the streets of Knoxville or the bush of Africa that my lips will forever sing glory glory hallelujah, He is the mighty God that was and is and is to come. Let the heartbeat of my life be the glory of your sacrifice. 

Check out the summary video of my trip!


  1. Such beautiful words from a beautiful young lady. I pray the Lord continues to bless you and others through you.

  2. Beautiful sunset picture!

    Also, it sounds like you have learned so much during your time in Africa! What an adventure you have had. If you need anyone to talk to about reverse culture shock when you get back to the States, I'm happy to listen. I had a really hard time moving to the US after four years in China. There are many great things to be said about the States, but the things you mentioned here (especially about how socially unacceptable talking about faith is), are hard to wrap your mind around when you first get back. Anyway, hope you travel safe!


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