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24 December 2013

Just arrived!

Welcome to Dondo!

I received a rainy welcome in Dondo last Wednesday. It rained for two solid days – steady downpour, day and night. Oh that Holy Spirit would rain down on us like that – until we could take no more!

The rain was refreshing for many after a time of extreme heat. It was also a sad time for many as their mud homes melted in the waterfall. Like the outpouring of the Spirit, some rejoice in the time of refreshing, others seek shelter from the deluge.

May we dance in His reign!

The tiny plane landed in the tiny airport in Biera, a large city about 45 minutes from Dondo. Lunch in a Biera Indian Restaurant, finely named, “Indian Restaurant” was our first stop. Then onto the Open Market, where fresh fruits, veggies and a variety of other things were being sold amid the rain and it's mud, with the odor of rotting mango's and other compost in the air.

Beans. We had to buy 130kg of beans for the widows distribution on Monday. 40 Mets/kg was a good price. The beans loaded down the back of the van, but still, we were able to do more shopping! Next stop was Shop-Rite, a more western idea of shopping, sort of like Wal-mart in the old days. Then to the base ~

Home

My house was being painted so I was to stay in “The Big House” until it was finished. The Big House was having a plague of ants and the solution to end their stay had such a strong odor that I stayed in a borrowed apartment for a couple of days until my house was finished. I moved into my new home on Friday.

It's a nice, two bedroom house, really intended for a couple, but no couples planning to come at this time, so I get to stay until they do. When that time comes I will move into one of the cute little apartments. But for now, I'm enjoying making my new house a home.
Yesterday, I made curtains for my windows and had someone in the open market sew the edges of a piece of fabric for a matching tablecloth. I have learned to haul water and found that cold bucket showers are very welcomed at the end of a hot and dusty day. Since the rain stopped, the ground is a mix of powdery dust and sand that gets everywhere!

The boys I have come to teach are on Christmas break, with a field trip and some sociology activities to fill the time. We ventured into Dondo, avoiding the Open Market my first time driving in town. We picked out Christmas gifts for a family of nine, then returned to bag the beans and some candy, for the widows distribution on Monday.

Late night conversation revealed a prayer room on the property, that no one has been using. I had to go check it out, even in my jammies! It's an awesome room with a mural on the wall depicting the vision that the Lord gave to Brian and Heidi, the same day. The presence of the Lord was tangible in that place, even with no one having prayed in there for some time. I now have a key and it is officially in use!

Sunday was the Christmas celebration in our base church. A youth group from a large sister church in Biera came and ministered with an interpretive dance and helped with praise and worship. Some young ladies got their praise on with the use of the worship flags I brought. Pastor Brian preached on the Christmas Story and the humility of Christs' coming. It was in Portuguese and translated into a local dialect with enough English for me to get the basic picture.



As the children sang in their own worship time, we distributed shoes. Flip-Flops. A blessing of love at this Christmas time. Some of the children came barefoot, some with shoes too big, others with shoes too small, and some mismatched. Some came twice because someone at home needed shoes too. The mama's from the village showed up, asking for shoes for their children too.

The gift of shoes, a limited number, was meant for the children of this particular local church.
Truly, need without end.

The service ended with music and the sharing of a special drink the locals make only for very special occasions. They had been saving money all month in order to buy the ingredients necessary to make it. It took all of their savings and a special gift that matched the funds to make the purchase. This special treat is made of corn flour, sugar and water and allowed to ferment. It is the consistency of lumpy, watery, cream of wheat, and doesn't taste that good. 
  
But no service is complete without the healing touch of the Master.

One of the widows had fallen into the fire and had severe burns on both legs. Both were healing well, but one still had some open areas and a lot of pain. I was able to cleanse the wound and lay hands on her, rebuking the pain and commanding healing. Lorena joined me and the pain ceased. The healing is, in itself, amazing to me in this place.  

Tending to physical wounds is often like tending to wounds of the soul. Most important is a cleansing. In an environment where dirt, dust and sand cover everything - even the beds (- a thin mat laid on the floor, if they are rich enough to own one), cleanliness is simply not an option. Little water is available and isn't suitable for cleansing wounds. No dressings here. Besides, the balm and covering would only harbor bacteria in a wound that is otherwise, healing nicely – having created it's own barrier to the harmful forces round about.

This evening I am relaxing at home. Talked with my folks. The doctors confirmed that the Lord healed my mom. She had a posterior, aortic aneurysm. She had asked me to pray when they were home for thanksgiving, something the Lord had already spoken to me, and we knew she was healed at that time. It's always fun when the docs have to give a good report!! They could find NOTHING on re-exam!

Today was the widows distribution. Another gift of Flip-Flops, a 1kg bag of beans with a few pieces of candy, a little bag of salt, some soap and a little money to help get them through the month.

Black plastic bags.

No ribbons and bows. You can't get ribbon here and the few bows available are cost prohibitive for so many. There may not be a lot of tinsel and twinkling lights, but there is a lot of love lighting the hearts of the worlds most desperate. From the outside looking in, it may not look like Christmas - in America,

but it sure looks like Christ from here.   


Following are a few pictures, I hope you enjoy!

 Entrance to the housing area of the base.
 The current church building on the base. A new, concrete structure is being formed around it, in order to make a larger, permanent building.
Pulpit area

 People soaking in the scriptures before Sunday morning service. This is an oral cultures, few have Bibles, few could read them if they had them. Scripture is played from the audio Bible for 30 minutes prior to service for those who do not have access to the scriptures any other time.

 The center of the Mango grove. Also serves as the outdoor arena for  large group meetings. This area will hold about 3000 people.
This is the stage at one end of the Mango grove.

Riding on eagles wings!
This is a photo taken from the airplane over Mozambique.


Wishing you a very Merry Christmas from Dondo, Safala, Central Mozambique!

With his Heart,
Kimberly