Day 9~Vacation Bible School & Youth Rally
Vacation Bible School was this morning and I was asked to teach the craft to the younger aged kids and it was great! There were 3 different classes, each progressing in age a year or so. So there were five of us selected to explain the craft, Brenda, Ashley, Kris, Kim, and myself. Praise the Lord for our awesome translator, Carol as we would not have survived without her! So we walk into the first class room where all the little tinies were seated on the floor. I look in the front row and there was my sweet Phalles smiling from ear to ear, I haven't seen her light up like that all week! We taught them Genesis 1:1 and helped them make a spinning wheel describing the days of creation. They caught on very quickly and overall all three classes went well. I was sad when it was over. There was something so powerful about two different cultures (ours and theirs) coming together on the very first verse of the bible to remind us that we ALL have the SAME Creator!
After lunch I was looking around in the Passion Center Office and saw "God is Good All the Time" written in Chichewa on a dry erase board. I wrote it down in this journal in hopes of writing it on my heart: Mulungu ndi wabwino nathawi zonse
In the afternoon I was able to go to the Youth Rally at the Botanical Gardens where Abusa Mark gave the message. He rocked it! I wrote down everything he said so that I could send it to Kalipo in a letter, it was that important! He spoke on Purity and Choosing the Right Friends. After his talk we broke up into small groups with the girls and boys separately. Our charge was to encourage them to open up about what they had heard Pastor Mark speak on. It was like pulling teeth to get those girls to talk! Janessa and Missy were fantastic at getting on their level and were able to establish a safe place for the girls to share anything they'd like. It was a special moment to encourage the girls to stand firm on the truth!
Day 10~ More VBS and Vision Clinic
Another round of VBS this morning. The first session was crazy!! There were 150 tinies trying to string tiny beads on a tiny string~it quickly became chaotic but we did the best we could. The next two classes were much better, Ashley took the lead this time and explained it much better than I had in the first class, Praise the Lord! The little ones just wanted to eat the beads and store them in their pockets for later. Again, I was able to see Phalles and Kalipo in the classes! At the end we handed out little goodie bags and their faces lit up~so excited to get their sweeties! After it was over all the kids gathered in the school yard to receive juice and a snack, but it was very chaotic with all the kids! For a moment I just stood on top of an old tree stump and just scanned the crowd thinking how awesome God was to allow me on the trip. I had given Phalles a hug and said, "Tionana", see you later as I always do, but I couldn't find Kalipo. We had gotten separated in the confusion of the crowd and I was bummed to leave without saying goodbye. I waited for a bit but decided to head back down the hill on my own. I had gotten to the bottom of the hill and was about to cross the bridge, and I felt the Holy Spirit saying, "Turn Around". So I did. As I came to the top of the hill, there was my Kalipo standing on the same tree stump I had been on earlier and he was waiting for me. I joked with him about not saying goodbye and we both left smiling. Mulugu Ndi Wabwino Nathawi Zonse
The day ended with the Vision Clinic and it was awesome (i really do say this all the time, don't i?) I got to help and it was such a blessing to see the excitement when these people could see for the first time in who knows how long. God gave Brenda this "vision" and it was wonderful to see it come to life. There were two "examining rooms" that were made up of three chairs and 1 table on the concrete slab that would eventually be a carport. Two "eye charts" that were actually two of our team members (the patients were asked could they see our faces for distance screening or could they read a card for reading glass screening). At the very back of the "office" were three suitcases loaded with glasses and three team members fitting the patients. It was the most beautiful optometrist office in the world at that moment!
There was one sweet lady who was the sole guardian to 6 children and while she was waiting for her turn she said, "I love you so much for being here." She was absolutely precious! After she had been examined and walked out wearing her new glasses she said, "I still love you." The Malawian people are beautiful and their joy is so raw, so simplistic, and so pure. O how I long for just that. And to that sweet little lady, "I love you too for just being here...."
|Relaxing with the girls at the botanical gardens|
|Kalipo and friends at VBS|
|Phalles with her VBS craft|
|Optometry Office #1~Kara/Fatsani|
|Optometry Office #2 Brenda/Joseph|
Eye charts Jessica/Kris
Fitting Lab in the distance