July 29, 2009

Let Us Eat Pickles

Today I feel very domestic. With my mother-in-laws help I made bread and butter pickles for us to enjoy for the next several months hopefully. She brought the needed ingredients from the USA (mustard seed, celery seed -which we can't get here) and a recipe so we had great fun making pickles. Tonight at supper will be the first "test" to see how we did. They look yummy. Hey when you live here you have to be domestic if you enjoy these types of things as they are not sold here.

July 28, 2009

Cabeca do Velho

Today the guys (Marc, his dad, our boys and our nephew Anthony) decided to climb the local mountain. It is called Cabeca do Velho which translates Old Man's Head because if you look at the mountain it looks like the profile of a man's face. They had a great time but were sore when they got home from all the walking and climbing. We do not have a car so in order to get to the mountain and back they had to walk 5 miles and climb the mountain but they had a great time as you can see from the photo. Marc's mom and I stayed home so she could use my neighbor's sewing machine to help me by mending some of our clothes. Unfortunately, we were without power from 10 am-6 pm so not much sewing took place. But this is Africa so you just never know what may happen.

July 24, 2009

Healed by Janelle Beiler

I wanted to share this beautiful poem by a young lady with a beautiful heart. Enjoy!

Do you want to be healed?
Healed from your comfort
Middle class wealth
And living the American dream?

Do you want to be healed?
Healed from your blindness
To the world just outside
To the souls of the people you meet?

Do you want to be healed?
Healed of your apathy
Stripped of your shield
To see reality?

Do you want to be healed?
Healed to be broken
Loved to be lost
Given new life only to give it away

It’s so easy to live in the comfort of home
Surrounded by friends and all that you’ve known
But is it true living? Are you changing your earth?
Are you making a difference? Has something changed since your birth?

Look out the door. Let reality sink in
Live for the poor, those living in sin
Open your arms to the broken, carry their weight for a while
Let the dirt smudges on your face make you smile

I want to be the one with dirt under her nails
Tired eyes, weary hands, but joy in her tales
Of living for others, of loving hard and deep
Of integrity, justice, and a road long and steep

Backwards Africa

Yesterday something really fun, at least to me happened here at our house. Marc's parents are here visiting from the USA and they are on the look out for some souvenirs to take back with them from their time here in Africa. Mozambique unfortunately is not known for hand crafts and it is difficult to find decent things to buy. We do have one wood carver that comes to our gate on a pretty regular basis trying to sell us items so when he came last week we asked him to carve a wooden map of Africa with the Big Five (lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino) animals carved in the center of the map. So yesterday he came with his finished map. There was only one BIG problem. He had done a great job of carving the Big Fve but the map of Africa was backwards. Of course my response was that my in-laws had to buy it because it was a perfect representation of what Africa is really like. In many ways it is beautiful but in many ways things are backwards. So next week when they head back to America there will be one beautifully carved, backwards :) map of Africa in their luggage. TIA (This is Africa) and even if it is backwards I love it!

July 21, 2009

Bush Coffee Pot

Well, I am glad I am married to a very creative man. This morning our coffee pot broke. In our house that is a sad day as coffee is an important part of the morning routine. So my husband decided he still needs his coffee so he created this lovely bush coffee pot out of an old powdered milk can and the handle from the coffee pot.

July 19, 2009


I have been come to a place this week that I need to worship. I am always needing to worship God but when life overwhelms us and we feel confused about things we must choose to remain worshipful. I was listening to a great sermon on the computer from our home church in Florida about worship and I was so grateful for the wonderful teaching and reminder that our worship is only for an AUDIENCE OF ONE- GOD. So my heart's intent this week is to be at rest AND WORSHIP HIM.

July 18, 2009

Annoying Pooches

You know part of life here in Mozambique is dogs. We deal with stray street dogs, other people's guard dogs and our dogs. A few months ago we bought two puppies so we could have guard dog's eventually. They are cute, and growing and getting big. Oh, and ANNOYING. They are learning to bark at people coming in the gate which is good. But then today they were naughty and pulled laundry off the clothesline and in the process ripped a sheet. Let's just say that is where I draw the line. They may be cute but don't mess with the laundry. This is war between me and the pooches and I am pretty sure who is going to win.

The Mozambican Wedding

This is Manuel (and our turkey a.k.a. Thanksgiving Dinner). He is one of our current staff members, and actually he was one of our orphans at Maforga (where we did our Bible school internship in 1997). He is getting married in a few weeks. We are learning lots about Mozambican culture as we help him prepare for his wedding. He has already paid for his fiance. Yes I said paid. He had to pay a bride price to her family like all men here do. It is quite a testing period that a young man must go through. He then had to be presented with her to her home church to have them determine if the marriage was acceptable. They agreed for the wedding to proceed. Then last week he had to go get his bride to be several miles out into the bush and take her to his mother's house for her to spend two weeks with her mother in law for training on how to be a good wife. I thought this was quite interesting. In my thinking it could go either way; either it helps prevent a lot of those mother in law/daughter in law tensions or the daughter in law could decide she's crazy to be marrying into the family and want to get out. Regardless, it is obvious to us that Manuel is wanting to marry Laurinda because he loves her which is not the norm here in Mozambique. Women are very mistreated, abused and taken advantage of, and treated as slaves. So much so that although Manuel is a Christian we have had discussions with him about how he should not follow culture norms and beat his wife. The young men are taught to beat their wives from the very beginning so they will respect them and will not be a problem. Sadly, most young women ( often girls marry from the age of 13 on) are taught to expect to be beaten and that if they are not then they are not valued and loved. Challenging culture is difficult but necessary is some cases. So to see a young couple that actually care for each other and want to do things God's way, in a loving way is encouraging. I am to make the wedding cake so I will have to tell you later how that all goes since I have no idea, although I have questioned Manuel vigourously, what the cake is supposed to look like.

July 15, 2009

Wonderful Creation

Well, we just returned from a wonderful trip to the Gorongosa Game Park. It is the first time we have done a "tourist" thing in Mozambique and it was wonderfully refreshing. It is about a 2 hour drive away so we headed off yesterday before lunch. We checked into our cabanas upon arrival and then headed off driving ourselves on safari to see some animals. We have had several friends go and not see anything other than antelope but we prayed before we left. On our drive we were able to see MANY different animals including impala, wilderbeest, kudu, waterbuck, elephants, many beautiful birds, warthogs, two types of monkeys, baboons, and mongoose type animals and a beautiul sunset over the savannah. We made it back to the gate just in time (5:55 pm) for the 6 o'clock closing. We then had a lovely dinner in the open, thatched dining room and headed off to our cabanas for bed. We woke up at 5:30 am, had breakfast and headed off again into the wild to try and see some lions. We were so blessed as this morning we were able to add several more sightings of the animals already mentioned and we saw three lions. FANTASTIC! What a fun time we had and we are so grateful we were able to spend this special time with our family visiting from the USA. Hope you enjoy some of the photos we took. Isn't God creative?

July 13, 2009

Check-Up Time

Yesterday was check-up day at the center for the children that were ages 5 and under. My mother in law, Theresa is here to visit for a few weeks so I thought I would take advantage of the help. We teamed up to weigh, measure heights, measure arm circumferences, check ears and eyes, etc. The children were excited and couldn't wait for their turn to step on the scale. They are so cute. The conclusion was we found some children that are a little thin, quite a few with rotten teeth, some with scabies, some with sores, one with ear infections, and one with infected eyes. Now to treat them. Little by little we will make a difference.

Doings of the Witch Doctor

Yesterday, as my mother in law and I were doing a little check-up of the younger children at the center I came across something I always hate to see. To me it represents darkness, the evil one and lies of the enemy. I found it around the belly of a little baby girl named Esther that is registered as one of our orphans at the center. It is just a simple, green piece of material but it represents bondage. Often here parents take their children to the witch doctor because they want them to be protected and believe that if they do not get the witch doctor's help their child will die and not be protected. Little Esther's mom is like these parents in that she has tied a charm around her baby's waist to try to ward off evil spirits and protect her. Needless to say I was not impressed and immediately explained to the siblings of this little girl that also attend our center that when we have Jesus in our heart we do not need these things from Satan because God protects His children and we need to trust Him and NOT the witch doctor. After explaining this I tore the band off of Esther. We then prayed over Esther and dedicated her to the Lord and asked for His protection and the blood of Jesus to cover her. We brought the charm home and burnt it in our back yard. Our prayer is that the light of Jesus would overshadow any darkness of the evil one in these childrens lives.

July 11, 2009

Tie Time

Add ImageOne of the items we brought from the USA and my in-laws brought from the USA were neck ties. I know it seems weird as most Americans have an abundance of neck ties in their homes that they are trying hard to get rid of somewhere. Here in Mozambique most national pastors do not have a neck tie and can not afford to buy one. In this culture though for a man to wear a neck tie is a symbol that he is to be respected and that he is a pastor. Therefore, this is why we decided to bring ties as gifts for pastors. Today, Marc and his dad were able to give away ties. One of our national friends Antonio received a tie and along with it a lesson from Marc's dad Chuck in how to knot a tie. Antonio was anxious to learn and felt honored to receive this gift. Sometimes it is the little things in life that seem inconsequential to us that make a big difference in the lives of others.

No Diesel - No Game Park

This past week we were supposed to finally do a tourist outing here in Mozambique. Marc's parents and nephew are visiting this month from the USA and we had made plans to visit a game park called Gorongosa. Unfortunately, there is a diesel shortage in town. Cars are waiting in line for hours and people are taking yellow 20 Liter jugs that used to hold oil and lining up for hours as well. Many times both are told after all that wait that there is no more fuel come back another day when a truck has made a delivery. We have enough fuel to get around town but would not have enough to drive two-hours one way to get to the game park. We will see what this next week brings. The directors of our mission are supposed to come collect the vehicle we have been using to use for ministry in Malawi on Monday which means we will be without a vehicle until we can raise the funds to purchase our own. It seems as though Gorongosa and being tourists will have to wait until another time.

July 8, 2009

My Baby Turns 10

Well yesterday my baby turned 10. Nate had a great day. First of all his grandparents and cousin are here for a visit which is a special treat. We went out to lunch for a birthday meal and then he was able to have some friends over to share cake. Ten years goes by so fast, too fast really. When you think of all the moments you have with them day to day there is so much we take for granted. My prayer is that I would treasure the moments and not be consumed by them and enjoy watching him become the man the Lord has for him to be. I am grateful that my "little" boy is still here on this earth for us to celebrate. Thank you Lord!