March 31, 2014

March Gladness

March is almost over and another April is here again. Time is pressing on. We are taking small steps of faith in our daily lives. We recently preached a message on the “little things”. God doesn’t want us to forget the little things, for many of them lead to the big events in life. We continue to be faithful in the little things of the ministry: Having a heart for the lost; teaching those who are hungry in Bible College, and loving those who may oppose themselves.

Recently one of the ladies in our church invited her neighbor to church, his name is Timothy. He came, listened, greeted us, and returned home. We followed him up by visiting his house. I figured he enjoyed the service but that he came to honor his neighbor’s request. He explained to us that after hearing the message, he knew he was in the right place. One thing I love so much about Malawi is that people are listeners. Maybe the pace of life is still slow enough, that people still listen. When you stop people on the street, they listen (intently even). Then this man said that after the service, he sensed the love from the church. What a great combination: Grace and Truth, Love and the Bible – A simple formula. This same story is repeated around the world and really is the Bible being reproduced.
                                                       Visiting Mary and her neighbor Timothy.
                                                    The children in the neighborhood came to greet us!

Another great blessing is to have these children with us who used to be street children, now having a home, and coming to our church. One of the ladies in our church, Grace, runs a government center for battered women; but one of her side projects is taking kids off the streets of Lilongwe. I think of her as the Malawian Mother Therese. Her center is across the street from our church so she and the children come for services and we do a youth program with them. One young man, Chisomo (his name means Grace in the Local chichewa dialect), has been part of the center for the past 6 months. He is about 8 or 9 and he comes regularly to services. One Wednesday during rainy season, we didn’t have anyone to play the conga drum in the church so he asked if he could play. Initially I thought he was to young to play, but since we were missing a lot of people, I gave him the chance. He turned out to be an amazing drum player for a little guy. He is definitely gifted. But what really struck me was the smile he gave as he played for our worship team – a little thing, which speaks volumes.

Pray for us as around 10 of us travel to Zambia for our annual Zamcon April11-13. Pr. Scibelli is visiting us here in Malawi for a week along with Shane and Colton (from Greater Grace in Carlisle, PA), then we will all hit the road for the conference (about a 12-hour drive from Lilongwe to Lusaka).

We are still believing God for a different church/Bible college location as we are soon outgrowing our current room. We have a few options, but we are praying for God’s wisdom.


                               African/Malawian Cuisine
   Cassava leaves: called "Chigwada" (in malawian dialect)
Mary has been a faithful member of our church, Bible school student and is also in my English class!
She owns a farm about 20 minutes outside of Lilongwe. She and her 3 children grow Maize, tomatoes, potatoes, a LOT of green leafy vegetables like Cassava leaves, Pumkin leaves, sweet potatoes leaves, and more...
For those of you who grow pumkins, and are wondering what to do with you pumkin leaves I have a great recipe for it!!:)
My little helper!
And so we made it at home! Basically, you have to pound the cassava leaves, and boil/cook it with a tomato and onion and a LOT of Ground Peanuts! Yes! Yum! We had it with potatoes and chicken!