Thursday, November 29, 2007

Afrikan Adventure: Empty Space

I write you from a seemingly very empty space…and I’m speaking quite literally, not referring to my mental capacity. The house that I live in was furnished almost exclusively by another couple on the team that had moved into a place where they did not need much of their belongings, working out quite perfectly for the both of us. But oh, how the tides have changed. Said couple is now moving into an unfurnished home requiring said belongings and thus bringing us to the current state as I listen to the reverb of my typing, sounding much like the typewriters of old. So now I currently have a hot plate and blender to my name. It’s all one really needs really. Blending can be very cathartic while creating delicious treats that are easily accessible through a straw. And with all concrete walls and tile floors I’ve found entertainment in singing Latin words loudly and listening to it bounce of the walls. Plus, this pillaging has provided a much better space to practice my gymnastic floor routines.

Moving on…with such a transitional time in the life of Action Zambia there has been need for assistance in the administrative area so I have been working in our office at least one day a week to help out. So if in the near future this mission suddenly disintegrates you’ll know why.

This past week marked a significant national holiday for our American friends and seeing as this is a predominantly American team I stuck a feather in my cap and joined the festivities. There was no turkey but there was pie for which was something to be truly thankful for.

Last week I was able to finally visit a dear woman who is on the Rural Health Committee that I work with who just lost her husband. Mr. and Mrs. Sakala had been married 43 years this November. They had been living on a farm out near where I used to live but now she will have to move into town with relatives. She shared how here in Zambia widows are often treated very poorly…it was shocking to hear what families will do these poor women. Luckily, Mrs. Sakala’s family has been very supportive but that is not the norm. Often, families will blame the widow for the death and make her walk around on her elbows and knees and they will take almost everything from her home and leave her with nothing. And when she goes to stay with other family she must be in seclusion while the man of the house is there. I hope to be able to visit with her at the new place she is staying at here in town. It was shocking and heart breaking to hear that is how these women are treated here.

I was also able to participate in a seminar put on by our CROSS team (the HIV/AIDS ministry). For the last five months the team has been training individuals and leaders in several churches to better deal with the HIV/AIDS pandemic and equip them with some counselling skills. So on Friday all the people from the different churches worked with got together for a seminar. In typical Zambian fashion I was asked to lead the music last minute and completely unprepared but it all turned out in the end.

And those are the highlights of days gone by. Some days are good, others present ample opportunity for “character building” but it’s encouraging to know I’m not in it alone. I think having an empty home could be a good thing. All I really need is Jesus anyway. Thank you to you all for your love and support over these months and your prayers which I’m sure have done more than we could possibly know. Take care and stay warm…or don’t bother with a heater, just come here. We could blend and sing Latin words together!


“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
~Jeremiah 29:13

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