These 10 days have been life changing for us all. Some in big ways, for others it was quiet reminders.
I asked Bethany to share where she saw God on this trip-and if she had an special moments she’d like to share. She said, “It would be easier to list the times I didn’t see God, because he was EVERYWHERE. He was in the children’s faces-the smiles they gave us as they waved hello. He was in the incredible landscape-the mountains, trees, gorgeous sunsets, rivers. He was in the Mvano-with the women of the Church taking ownership of a girls retreat. He was with us every moment.”
Ben said, “You know, coming on this trip I had a lot of struggles with God. I was starting to question my faith and ask if there was even a God. After this week, I know it to be absolutely true. God is real. He is with us every moment and he loves us uncondionally.”
This was Melissa’s 10th time to visit Malawi. She said, “I need this time every year to ground myself and remember what is truly important in life. Reset my priories. This is my happy place.”
Scott put it best when he addressed the people of Lisenjala during his sermon, “Please do not think that we come here because we think you need something from us that you can’t do for yourself. We come here to learn from you and to share God together. We need you.”
The people of Lisenjala live in a way most of us could not imagine. Clothes for many of them are purely something to cover their bodies (and since we were there in the winter-something to keep them warm.) And most of their clothes had holes in them. The poverty level is unlike anything most of us had ever seen before. But their love for God and each other is overwhelming. They have a deep joy that is awe inspiring, especially in the midst of a hard life. They don’t know a stranger. Their children run free and unafraid of being abducted. Laughter and singing rings throughout the entire village. They choose joy everyday.
My first post was about being able to leave my stuff behind to follow Jesus. Now as I return home, I realize that my life has far too long been about the stuff. Life isn’t about stuff-that is not what you need to be happy. To be happy, you need to choose joy; you need deep, loving relationships; you need God.
Thank you, God, for speaking to us all in your own personal way. Thank you for loving us and all of our imperfect parts. Thank you for the chance to serve you and your people.