By God's grace a team of American volunteers have safely returned from a mission to Zimbabwe.
They reported being surprised by the incredible beauty of the countryside and the friendliness of the people. Four out of the five team members from America had previously conducted short term mission outreaches in West Africa, and they were very pleasantly surprised to find that almost everybody in Zimbabwe spoke English! They were also astounded at the pleasant weather in Zimbabwe in May. Their experiences in West Africa had been of hot, humid days and sweltering nights. However, as much of Zimbabwe lies at fairly high altitudes, the climate is much more pleasant than in most of Africa.
The Americans also commented on how amazed they were at the positive attitudes of the white farmers they met. Considering all that they had endured at the hands of Robert Mugabe's ZANU PF youth brigade and militia farm invaders. Having lost farms, which sometimes their families had owned for generations. Many having also lost loved ones who died during, or after all the assaults, threats and loss. Yet the farmers the team met evidenced no bitterness at all.
The team commented on how extremely impressed they were by the refreshingly genuine concern for neighbours which they saw in the local churches. The agility and flexibility of local churches in adapting projects to meet the urgent needs of hospital patients, pensioners and orphans and to reach the lost for Christ was inspiring. Despite most of the people they met having suffered personal loss, including traumatic deaths in their immediate family, they met many people clearly dedicated to personal holiness and to serving God and their neighbour. Instead of being obsessed with personal peace, comfort and affluence, as so many in more stable parts of the world are, they found it refreshing to meet folk who put love of God and country ahead of safety or prosperity to stay and work for the Kingdom of God. The world needs far more of this.
They discovered that Zimbabwe still has hope. Numerous dynamic Christian fellowships and ministries are actively engaged in meeting the needs of society with practical Christian love in action and the Gospel.
The Americans described their mission to Zimbabwe as a tremendous time of learning and service. They particularly enjoyed meeting with, serving alongside and learning from God-fearing followers of Jesus Christ who were providing valuable services in their communities.
The local Zimbabwean Christians reported back to us that they were most impressed by these American volunteers, especially by their eagerness to serve. The American team members rolled up their sleeves and got involved in hard physical work, cleaning, hoeing and ploughing fields, fixing broken chairs, painting walls, and in various innovating ways making the most of the limited facilities to serve pensioners, prisoners and orphans.
Despite the economic devastation in the country, the widespread starvation caused by the farm invasions, and the total collapse of the Zimbabwe currency, the team found Zimbabweans open, receptive, eager and hungry for spiritual literature and discussions. Most encouragingly, the team plans to come back to Zimbabwe with more workers.
Answers to Prayer
We praise God for the many successful trips our teams have been able to make so far this year into Zimbabwe, Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique and the Congo.
Pray for the Congo
Please pray for Johan who is heading into the Congo for another long mission to that desperately needy and neglected mission field.
"Finally, brethren, pray for us that the Word of the Lord may run swiftly and be glorified just as it is with you, and that we may be delivered from unreasonable and wicked men, for not all have Faith." 2 Thessalonians 3:1-2
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