Monday, August 3, 2009

Sharing on Zambia

I spoke at my church yesterday about my mission trip to Zambia. I was given just a few minutes to answer some questions about the trip and what God accomplished through us. I shared about everything that I could in the short time. If you've asked me about Zambia since I've gotten home you know I will talk your arm and ears off, so getting my thoughts down to 5-7 minutes was a real struggle.

Anyway, I spoke on the positive aspects of Zambia, the things that are in the control of each individual. They have such a hunger for God and fellowship with Him and His people. They will sit for hours on Sunday mornings, after walking for hours to get there. Yes, I said walking. They also have such a joy for God. Jesus said that it would be easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. I know the reason now. We have so much that we don't think we need God. As Americans we are the richest people in the world. Even the poorest people in our country, the people who bust their butts for minimum wage, are among the richest people in the world. They have pure joy for the Lord. You can see the joy in the eyes of the people that really "get" it. I'm actually jealous of their joy and have started praying to have that kind of joy for Jesus.

The negative things were the things the people of Zambia could not control individually. Polygamy is still legal there. In a country that admits that 25% of their population is HIV positive you would think step one would be outlawing polygamy. Instead women are still treated as property. They have a wife for cooking, a wife for cleaning and another for those "extra" duties. Women have no voice and no rights there. Another thing they don't have control over is their financial situation. The minimum wage in Zambia is the equivalent of $300... a YEAR! They live in small one room huts-no electric, no plumbing, no seperate rooms for each kid, no cable, no AC, no Italian tile flooring or granite counter tops. They cook outside over a fire, or sometimes in a cooking hut. (These look like what we think of when we hear Tiki huts.) And because of their income they eat only sheema. I've compared it to poor man's grits. Imagine grits, with no salt, butter, cheese or any type of spices. They eat that for three meals a day. Sometimes they have meat that they can dip it in, sometimes they have vegetables. Otherwise, it's just sheema.

After talking about all of this I talked about Global Samaritans and the outreach they do. They run the orphanage there that we stayed at. We have 50-60 children. (I honestly lost count because we got some new kids while we were there.) The majority of children are orphans of the AIDS crisis. Some of the kids though have been taken away from their parents. One of the girls, Catherine, is a one of the most beautiful girls I have met in my entire life. Her mother sold her into prostitution when she was around 8 years old. She realized how wrong this was and went to social services. She was thankfully taken away from her mother. She has the joy of the Lord I was talking about earlier. She knows Jesus loves her and that radiates through all she does. I also spoke about Joe, the little boy that my husband and I are going to sponsor. We don't have a lot of money. In face, by American standards we're really poor. We have four children and he's a lower enlisted in the Army. We're making sacrifices though to sponsor this little boy and another little boy through World Vision. Through Global Samaritans we pay $30 a month for Joe's care. That $30 a month feeds him, clothes him, shelters him, educates him in God's way and gives him medical care. We can choose to change the life of a little boy for what it costs for our family to go out to a cheap place, once. We are choosing to help this boy and sacrificing eating out, something we as Americans do too much anyway. I also spoke of the other boys that still need sponsors, since new children showed up while we were there. These boys don't have sponsors yet. I "thought" that people would be willing to sacrifice a little to change the life of one boy for eternity. Only one person came to speak to me after though. She said she needed to talk to her husband after getting the details. One of the boys was sponsored, by someone in my life who is on Disability and has a very, very limited income. She was willing to sacrifice, while the people driving the brand new cars, looking at their watches to see when it would be time to go to get their own lunch at the restaurant of their choosing, were not willing to sacrifice. It is so hard to not be frustrated. And angry. I'm praying for God to change the hearts of His people. I guess it really is easier for that camel to make it through the eye of a needle. If for whatever reason you feel led to sponsor a child please send me a message for more information. I'm not going to stop until I have found the sponsors God has for these boys.