The end of June,over of dozen disciples gathered and “camped” out at Ivanildo’s home over a 3 day weekend to participate in a virtual camp sponsored by Palavra de Vida (Word of Life) ministry here in Mozambique. Some sessions were watched via the internet, others were group teaching and discussions.
All sessions were studies centered around the weekend theme of “I will not be contaminated” and taken from the book of Daniel. The main focus was on developing a healthy and Biblical view of marriage and relationships. As Daniel and his friends understood, we are called to a higher standard than that of the world. We must decide to live lives that are pleasing to God, even if it means going against family or culture. Of course there was also free time for some games and lots of eating!
On Sunday, the last day of the event, all the local disciples were invited to join us for a collective worship service. It was the first time in many months for some of the disciples to gather again for corporate worship. Unfortunately, we were having such a good time that we forgot to get pictures!
I have shared several times about how we have divided into small groups of disciples meeting around the city due to the restrictions on church meetings and social gatherings. These small groups have proved to be positive in many ways. But since I have been back, I have learned that there have been other adaptations needed to still be able to teach and reach people when meetings and travel are restricted.
Ivanildo, along with several of the disciples, have moved to virtual teaching and encouragement of believers. Daily, he sends out a chronological Bible reading plan (so they will read the whole Bible in one year) as well as writes and sends a weekly study guide based upon each week’s reading.
They have developed a website which includes links to different Christian books they have for sale, book reviews, different study materials and articles on topics such as the Christian life. They offer free spiritual couseling online to anyone who has questions.
Mozambique is still under COVID restrictions for churches and gatherings. I heard that at least some of the area schools have closed again, but so far that hasn’t included our city, but that could be coming soon. Regardless of the restrictions, the Gospel is still being shared. In person and small groups as we can, and virtually, even here in Mozambique. Pray for these efforts.
Fixing Everything Again…
One would think that after almost 20 years in Africa, I would be used to the process of returning home after an extended absence. But even knowing how slow things are here to get done, one gets spoiled with American efficiency and forgets. At least I do. This first month back in Mozambique has been frustrating as I adapt back to a different way of getting things done.
Last month, we told you how we had to eventually take a bus home to Inhambane as our truck started having serious issues when Ivanildo arrived in Maputo to collect us. I took it to the Nissan dealership and they found several issues that have been repaired, however there is still a serious engine knocking noise that they say must be addressed. I called this week to check on progress, and the mechanic said they are still trying to solve the issues, and “not to be in such a hurry to get my truck back as they must solve this issue.” I have been waiting a month. Is that too much of a rush? I wasn’t thinking so, but what do I know?
Another problem to solve upon my return has been that the electricity at my house kept going off and needing to be rest with a code from the electric company. No one knew why, until we discovered that the wiring bringing power into the house had lost some of its protective covering and then when the wind would blow hard, it caused the wires to touch, shorting out the power. It was a serious issue. An additional major wiring issue was discovered in my control box as well. It needed to be rewired and upgraded. Not a small task.
Plus, while I was gone, the pump for our water well burned out and could not be repaired, as well as the pressure pump connected to the system. Related to the electrical problem? Could be. The technician thought so. Thus the pumps needed to be replaced and pump house rewired to prevent this in the future. Did I mention the solar power power system for our house is also giving problems and needing maintenance and an upgrade as well? The end of all of this is in sight, or so I hope.
I could start talking about needing to fix two roofing issues as well, but you get the point. Time and money and time and more money to get things back up and working correctly. But the the house did sit largely empty for the last 10 months and that is to be expected.
What I always forget is how slow things move here. After so much practice, you would think I would be the most patient person on earth. I am not. But God is patient with me, even as I seem to have to start learning patience all over again.
Thank you for your continued prayers and support of our ministry!
Scott, Lisa, Gabriel, Mariah, and Jayden Harris