Monday, April 18
We glorify Your name. We glorify Your name. Baba. Father. We glorify your name. These are the words to a favorite Zulu song of mine. I wish I could convey to you to power and beauty of the Zulu voices as they sing these words. In fact, I wish I could convey to you all of the beauty and wonder of this place. Of these people. There simply are no words sufficient.
Today was glorious indeed. We had a day of rest – true rest. This team is so efficient and effective that after church on Sunday we took a rainy afternoon and transformed the chaos that had developed through our four clinics into a neatly packed and organized group of medicines and supplies to be taken up the mountain for our fifth and final clinic. Sharon, Cathy and Megan helped create a supply of medicines to leave for Mercy and Isaiah to use throughout the year (Mercy is a trained nurse). Sarah N. and Anna organized the pharmacy supplies, while Barb organized her nursing supplies. Kristie, Amy and Sarah R. helped to clean the Mafus’ home – one week of 18 guests, including 4 little ones, makes for a messy house J. Heather and Bruce continued doing our laundry (this year we asked everyone to pack only in their carry-ons to allow more room for medical supplies. But carry-ons don’t carry enough clothes for two weeks. Heather and Amy and Kristie have been keeping us, and the Mafus, in clean clothes). Andy prepared dinner with RevRob, grilling some delicious hamburgers. The rainy day ended as it began – raining. But we were able to squeeze in a little game-playing in the evening, popping some popcorn for a delicious snack.
After organizing and preparing everything yesterday, we were able to find some rest in today. Mercy and Sabelo and the rest of our team of Zulu translators headed up the mountain with all the clinic supplies this morning – and praise be to God they have arrived safely!! Sharon, Sarah N. and Isaiah headed into town(s) to run some errands. The rest of the team headed to Richards Bay for some lunch, a little time at the mall, and then a trip to the Indian Ocean. The skies began cloudy, but the day ended beautifully and the crashing waves pounding the sand reminded us all of God’s incredible power. He can tell the ocean to only come so far. He can move the mountains. He can make the rain fall, and the sun shine. He is an awesome God.
Tonight, we’ve enjoyed yet another delicious meal prepared by Anna and Megan. RevRob led us in a time of devotion, reminding us that we are blessed if we live the lives God has called us to live (see Matthew 5). And now we are cleaning up, packing up, and preparing for our trip to Ingwavuma for our final clinic. It’s as if we have turned a corner in this trip. Home, and all of you that we love and miss so much, are in sight. But our hearts are here as well, with these friends we have made, and in this place that has touched us all in unique and special ways. And so we ask that you pray for us. To stay in the moment(s) here. To stay present in this place as long as we are blessed to be able, so that God can continue to use us in whatever ways He can. There is much left to do here – much left to experience. So please pray for us in this way.
And please, please pray for our journey up and down the mountain. We are anxious for the drive but know that God goes before us, travels with us, and holds us in His hands. And we know that you all are lifting us up in your thoughts and prayers and we cannot thank you enough. We may not be able to write for a while as we will be at the game park until Thursday night. But we will write as soon as we return (God willing ;) ). Meanwhile, we lift you all up in prayer as well. We think of you often. We thank God for you. And we look forward to seeing you all again soon!
What do I know of you, who spoke me into motion?
For where have I even stood but on the soil of your ocean?
Are you fire, are you fury? Are you sacred, are you beautiful?
What do I know of Holy?
Today I was reminded of these song lyrics while at the beach at Richard’s Bay. As Sarah mentioned, I too noticed the awesome power and holiness of God as we stood (at the southernmost point in the world that I have ever been) looking at the tall crashing waves of the Indian Ocean. God controls the winds and the waves, and he is most certainly in control of our lives. I am surely thankful of that fact!
So far, it has been such a privilege to serve the Zulu people. I think one of the coolest things is hearing them pray and worship in their native language. At church on Sunday in Gubethuka, the congregation sang songs of thanks to our medical team for helping them. They gave touching testimonies about how the medicine we’ve brought is such a blessing to them. It was very humbling.
Thank you again, supporters, for your continued prayers and faithfulness. I am reminded again and again that this trip was made possible through you and through God. Please pray for our clinic tomorrow on the mountaintop of Ingwavuma.