We are trying to make the best of what we have. Very difficult. There are many flies and cockroaches. The ablution facilities are not good. There is a small outside building, one half a toilet (long drop), and the other a wash room. To go to the toilet we must squat over the hole in the floor. The smell is terrible and there are many large flies buzzing around. Large cockroaches crawl on our legs at the same time. The extreme heat does not help the situation.
Kathy and Erika are experiencing great difficulties with the babies and adverse conditions. There is no running water in the house or electricity. The girls have to do washing by hand and heat the water by making a fire. Ironing is done by means of a coal iron. I cannot school the kids because there is no space.
Despite these conditions we are trusting in the Lord. We understand that He is busy doing a work in each one of us. Although there is grumbling, we are praying for the Lord’s grace to change our hearts that we will not be like the Israelites and have to spend more time in the wilderness….”
The Lord had showed us to go and live together with the people. “It shall be the power of your testimony that will bring others to me”, said the Lord. This scripture was very strong in our hearts.
It was at this point our lives changed drastically, and God was really opening our eyes. “Write it down”, said the Lord, “for others to read”.
Some of the things we saw and felt made our own hearts turn upside down and at first we would not accept them. It is our prayer that God will touch your heart as we share some of these things with you.
This article is not being written for the sake of earning money. It is not being written with aspirations of us becoming famous authors. We are not appealing for funds through these words. We are not writing to criticize any person or organization. Christians in the days of the great persecution did not go about arguing over various aspects of God’s word, or about how certain ‘doctrines’ should be applied. No, deep in the Catacombs, their very lives were at stake because of their strong love for God. To lay down their lives was a great privilege, even for children to do so. There is no other reason for this article other than to bring others closer to God.
The church is asleep in the light and apathy reigns. One day, Jesus will return to collect His precious bride – what will He find? Will He find you and me speaking empty words or will He find a body of people unselfishly giving of themselves as they go quietly, but effectively about, doing the things He has asked of them?
Jesus will definitely return and will definitely find this group of people. The question is – Will you and I be in that group?
Many Christians, ourselves included, were brought up in a kind of ‘cotton wool’ Christianity where everything is filled with a worldly happiness and we rely on others in the body for our relationship with God to be made stronger.
“You shall love your neighbor as yourself”, the second commandment, which Jesus said is like the first. To us we had come to live amongst people who had been given generally a sound up bringing in the word of God. Malawi has enjoyed Christian evangelism since the days of David Livingstone and consequently people sharing the word of God are accepted freely in most areas.
Since the time of the Federation, most Malawians have perceived white people to be wealthy and sadly, the churches and missionaries who have evangelized here, have to a large degree, continued to bring proof of that belief. The Lord showed us this in our early days and that we had to do everything that our hosts did in order to show how the true love of Christ could work. It was not just a case of flying in on a luxury airline, attending or organizing a few conferences, then ‘jetting’ back out again. Yes, God uses those kinds of circumstances, but He would desire us to go much further. He would desire that we nurture those with whom we share His word.
We could see that much foreign currency had been brought into this country over the past years by the churches. Much of that had been spent on the expenses of church personnel and buildings. How much had been effectively used to preach the Gospel?
The perception of the average Malawian is that it is easy for those who preach the Gospel to do the things of God because they are rich (materially). They have large cars, live in up market areas of the big cities and earn monthly salaries.
When we live with people and share the same challenges, the truth begins to come out. It makes a difference to live with someone, as opposed to visit for a season.
We saw that ‘Churches’ had sprung up over the whole land. Men had followed the ‘calling’ as a means of income because poverty is so great. Often we had heard it mentioned that the ‘Pastor’ is the easiest man to find in the village because he has a brick and mortar house as opposed to the other mud and grass houses of the people. They had met with doctrinal differences and broken away from registered organizations, forming their own churches.
“….We have met Joseph, brother of Timothy (who was at the mission in SA with us). He knows of the Lord but does not know him. Frank is a pastor who did a correspondence course from Living Waters church in R.S.A. David has been supporting him for the last two months. We are trying to discern who the body is.
If we have a sound relationship with God then we will feed off His living waters and that will keep us away from sin.
Mission Malawi is a bi-monthly series and will be published every second week until the diary ends.
If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.
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