Gracious, what a week! Wait, it has been TWO weeks! We have had an amazing time here with Team Coggins! We have seen lives changed, we have seen lives saved and we have seen lives lost. It has been a rather emotional week. The team of 6 men came with vigilance to conquer and they did. They were flexible, adaptable and willing to do whatever was needed. They had the joy of witnessing souls saved but the sorrow of seeing a life taken right before their eyes. It was intense and a bit scary but as always God protected them from any harm. Ken and I thoroughly enjoyed hosting them and can’t wait for our next team (we have already told them they are our favorite team this year; but we also had to confess that so far they were our only team this year) lol! As I said, we did see souls saved in the village of Kabuyu. After 2 days of preaching and showing the Jesus Film, it appears about 300 hands went up to after a call for salvation. I realize numbers are not important and because we never know if they fully understand the call, we find ourselves wondering how many really understand what they are raising their hand for, we have no way of being certain it was the first time they have made a public confession. I wish we could speak with all 300 hundred of those precious people one on one, but it would be impossible. What we do know is that if we are obedient and do what God calls us to do… He will do the rest!! They have heard the word - for that we Praise the Lord!
In the U.S. you are “Spring”ing into Easter, we are “Fall”ing into Autumn and I love it! I have never been fond of winter nor have I liked rainy days; let me just say that has changed! I stand outside with my hands lifted up every time I see a cloud (well, not EVERY time) knowing I will soon feel a cool breeze. Oh the joy of cloudy day here in Zambia! Now winter is coming and I rejoice! What a difference the Equator makes! I am sure soon I will be complaining because it is cold…you know how we Americans are!! lol
I had the joy of celebrating my birthday last week; the team took all of the children from Global to Olgas for pizza! It just happened to be my day of birth…I think someone must have PRE-arranged that one! I won’t mention any names but I call him “G”. The children sang Happy Birthday (in English) Olgas gave us ‘ice cream cookie’ (similar to our ice cream cake) only much thinner. It was thoughtful and delicious.
I am happy to announce that my fat jeans are now my fat jeans again and I can now fit into my skinny jeans! I have only been here a month, I am eating very well, but very healthy. No Sonic Happy Hour, no Chick-fil-a, hardly any junk food! Chicken, green beans, salad and tuna…(Oh, and EGGS!) those seem to be the things that taste the best. I did make some very good lasagna while the team was here; I need to add that to my menu!
I have had to spend a few days running back and forth to the local immigration office this past week; which I am finding is not at all unusual. One officer told me I needed one particular document when I returned with that document another officer told me something totally different….grrrr…patience… Ken and I are pretty confident we HAVE all of the necessary documents (they were sent to Lusaka weeks ago) but if we don’t already have a copy we have to go down the street to the one business that makes copies and go BACK to immigration. After two days at immigration I think I am in good shape…for at least 30 days… then I have to do it all again
We are starting the “Girls Club” tomorrow. They are sooo excited. We will have our Bible Study and then gather in the kitchen to “bake” something. They don’t’ have ovens in their homes. They only have the outside kitchen where they cook everything on the brazier. They don’t have the ingredients or necessary cook ware to make cookies, breads etc. I too, am looking forward to my time with them!
We had a good bit of rain last week…not every day…just a lot at one time. The ground was completely saturated and it caused our power lines (poles) to fall. We had no power for almost 2 full days. When the power goes so does our “well pump”. We have a generator that we run for a few hours about every 12 – 18 hours to keep a cool temperature in the freezer (the house mothers have a freezer to store the food for that month). We had no water one day. Let me just say. That won’t happen again! We are going in to town today to buy large containers for water. We had drinking water, but we could not flush, wash dishes or bodies. That was the longest length of time I can remember experiencing no power…which brought on my first “meltdown”. Ken had taken the team to the airport (I am always a little teary when a team leaves) so with having to say good bye to our American friends, Ken was not here, I was hot and sweaty and could not shower, I missed my children and grand children and family, I just decided to cry and pray… God heard each word and lovingly held me through each tear. I am sure there were only one set of footprints that afternoon. He lovingly placed me back on the ground with more strength than I had before. I am sure it was the first of many meltdowns, but someone must have been praying for me and for that I send a huge THANKS!
I am looking forward to my first Easter here. I know it will be quite different. I have not seen anyone dying Easter Eggs, no chocolate bunnies and no special Easter music (or none that I will recognize as Easter music) but I can’t think of anywhere I would rather be. One thing for sure, they will make a joyful noise!! I wish each of you could hear them singing.
I would love to see our grand babies Kaley and Hayes all dressed up for Easter; I know they will be precious! Adam, Colie, Chris, Kerri, Michelle, Nick, Blair and Meri we love and miss you more than you could ever imagine…
May God bless you all and thanks for your prayers! Come see us!