Saturday, June 5, 2010
I woke up to find that I had only one visitor (that I knew of) through the night. Attached to my mosquito net was a black spider about the size of my thumb. I assumed he wanted to be returned to his home OUTSIDE my hut and I kindly obliged. I headed out to breakfast and devotions. Here are a few of the verses I used for the devo along with some notes:
Titus 3:5-7
Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to HIS MERCY He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, Whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, That having been justified by HIS GRACE we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

*if we believe, we are guaranteed heaven because of MERCY
*the only justification for this is God’s GRACE
*it doesn't end there..

Titus 3:8
This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable to men.

James 2:14-19
What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? If a brother or sister is naked and without daily food, and one of you says to them, "Depart in peace, be warmed and filled," but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. But someone will say, "You have faith, and I have works." Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith BY my works.

Isaiah 62 - talking about Jerusalem, but could easily be referring to Twachiyanda.

For Zion's sake I will not hold My peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until her righteousness goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a lamp that burns. The Gentiles shall see your righteousness, and all kings your glory. You shall be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord will name. You shall also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God. You shall no longer be termed forsaken, nor shall your land anymore be termed desolate; but you shall be called Hephzibah, and your land Beulah; for the Lord delights in you, and your land shall be married. For as a young man marries a virgin, so shall your sons marry you; and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you. I have set watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they shall never hold their peace day or night. You who make mention of the Lord, do not keep silent, and give Him no rest till he establishes and till He makes Jerusalem a praise in the earth. The Lord has sworn by His right hand and by the arm of His strength: "Surely I will no longer give your grain as food for your enemies; and the sons of the foreigner shall not drink your new wine, for which you have labored. But those who have gathered it shall eat it, and praise the Lord; Those who have brought it together shall drink it in My holy courts." Go through, go through the gates! Prepare the way for the people; build up, build up the highway! Take out the stones, lift up a banner for the peoples! Indeed the Lord has proclaimed to the end of the world: "Say to the daughter of Zion, 'Surely your salvation is coming; behold His reward is with Him, and His work before Him.'" And they shall call them THE HOLY PEOPLE, the REDEEMED OF THE LORD; and you shall be called SOUGHT OUT, a CITY NOT FORSAKEN.

Before we could head into the bush, we had to transfer all the stuff from the bus to the Land Cruisers because the bus would not stand a chance on the small, rutted, washed out dirt roads. We piled in and said goodbye to civilization for the next 4 days. A couple hours into the trip (and about an hour after abandoning the paved road) we were greeted along the side of the road by a dozen children from a basic school who had been impacted by the Hoops of Hope ministry. They were holding up signs they had made to welcome us to the ADP. We stopped and visited for a few minutes, then continued on our journey. The roads in the Twachiyanda ADP are without a doubt the worst I’ve ever driven on in my life. Imagine the worst remote road in the US and it cannot compare to the pain these roads inflicted on our bodies.
FINALLY, we arrived at the World Vision compound, which was comprised of a few small buildings with two light bulbs each and mattresses on the floor (both of which I learned were huge upgrades from last year), but no running water. We set up our mosquito nets and unloaded all the gear from the trucks and got ready to head out to visit some of our team’s sponsor children. We loaded up in the vehicles and AGAIN took off down the aforementioned roads for about an hour to a remote little village where two sponsor children lived. What awaited us there was something I will never forget.
We pulled into the village (which consisted of maybe a dozen huts) where there were nearly a hundred people waiting for us, and as soon as they saw us, they began singing and dancing and smiling. I’ve never seen so many people smiling as genuinely as these people were. As the dancing concluded, we were invited to sit on wood benches while the rest of the village either stood or sat in the dirt. I observed the exchanging of gifts with the sponsor (Denise) giving cooking oil, salt, sugar, and a soccer ball to the child (Prince) with him in return giving her a hand carved wooden fish. It was amazing.
This was my first chance to see for myself the impoverished conditions in which these people live. They live either in clay brick buildings (approximately 10 feet by 20 feet) or small huts made of wood and grass, both of which have no floor. It is still hard to understand in my Americanized mind how these people in this moment could be so filled with joy in spite of the fact that they have absolutely nothing and many of them are sick and dying with HIV/AIDS. We had only been in the bush for one day and my world was already being turned upside down. I barely remember climbing into my mosquito net covered bed on the dusty concrete floor when I passed out as soon as I laid down.


Blogger Darren Tyler said...

Thanks for sharing Adam. Can't wait to hear some of these stories in person.

6:46 PM  
Anonymous Jordan said...

Adam, thanks for sharing your stories from Africa! It's so awesome to see what God's doing!

7:31 PM  

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