Monday, February 22, 2010

February 2010 - Wendi Hammond

A great trip has started for us. 

Saturday we took Shelley to meet Tabitha, the little girl she sponsors from New Hope Orphanage.  I’ll never forget driving up to see this little girl loitering by the gate.  Shelley hopped out of the car and said, “Tabitha, its Shelley.”  When she heard this, Tabitha leapt in the air and ran over to the gate.  Their embrace was like the commercial with two star-struck lovers running toward one another on the beach, but with no corny overtones, just anticipation fulfilled beyond either’s expectations. 

We left Shelley to visit with Tabitha and had Debonair’s Pizza with Bongani Dlamini, Swaziland YFC’s national director.  We delivered to him a new (for him) laptop, complements of Johananson Transportation, which is going to empower his ministry greatly.  I was excited to hear him report about how he is collaborating with other YFC colleagues from South Africa and Mozambique to host some “See the Story” events.  This idea grew out of a conversation Bongani and I had last summer about what Fresno/Madera YFC is doing to tell our story better.  Very fun!

Today was church.  Oh how wonderful to see old friends and for Kristen and I to introduce Laura, Patti and Shelley to them.  Many hugs and smiles.  The music that comes out of the mouths of Swazi people always moves my heart.  I know it brought tears to the eyes of my teammates who were hearing these angelic melodies for the first time.  I was the preacher for today and talked about the parable of the three servants from Luke 19 and the importance of everyone “stewarding well” the things they’ve been given.  My hope and prayer is that as I shared my gratitude for the equipping I’ve received from my pastor, mentors and teachers and responsibility to steward these things . . . members of the Dwalini church would sense the same gratitude for what they’ve received from Arnau over the years and a renewed commitment to invest what they’ve been given so that the kingdom can advance.

Another highlight of today was a candid conversation about AIDS and Swaziland with the young man who serves as a caretaker of the house in which we are staying.  What a great glimpse into the heart and mind of a young Swazi person.  Patti will share more about the conversation below.

Tomorrow we’ll split up.  Three of us will visit caregivers in new community, share the technology of solar cooking and water pasteurization using WAPI’s.  The weatherman is predicting a hot, sunny day.  Two will remain behind to begin organizing the medicine and clothing in the donated 40ft. container, a big job, but one that will make a tremendous difference for the caregivers as they come to get supplies to carry out their ministry.

Thanks for your prayers.  More later.

No comments:

Post a Comment