Tuesday morning found us in the van again to CAPA with Nathan now comfortably at the wheel. However, Jim stopped us a little distance from our destination so we could complete the journey by taxi bikes. We all hopped on bikes and enjoyed a refreshing ride to CAPA’s campus.
We spent the day at CAPA finishing up transcribing and editing interviews and then worked on cataloging many boxes of books that will soon be going in the library.
The Floreens graciously opened their home to us for dinner and we enjoyed a delicious meal and warm fellowship, followed by a campfire where many of us roasted mice marshmallows.
After dinner, Elliot shared another devotional with us, this time on 1 Corinthians 13:3-7, the well known passage on the characteristics of love. He focused on how if we serve without love, then we gain nothing. If we serve the students at CAPA without love, and if we serve the missionaries here in Malawi without love, then it is of no good. It’s a very timely reminder, especially as we are in our second week; we are getting tired and sometimes don’t know what we are supposed to do since we are pretty much finished with interviews. It’s important for us to keep in mind that we are here serving because we love Christ and want to bring Him glory. And by serving CAPA, which equips pastors to preach His Word and by serving the missionaries who are doing His work, more people hear about and know Jesus. Thus He is glorified. I pray that we continue to serve with the right purpose and heart attitude, with love that is patient, kind, humble, and selfless–the kind of love Christ has for us as He took our place on the cross.
Another thing that I have been thinking about lately is how much faith do I have in Christ. Getting to listen to a lot of missionaries talk about their lives and decisions to come to Malawi, they all put all of their lives completely into the Lord’s hands. One family’s children need to see several health specialists back in the States since Malawi’s healthcare system isn’t so good. There’s also no 911 here in case there’s a medical emergency. But health fears don’t stop them from doing what God has called them to do. She said that God numbers her children’s days, but also watches over them. This really stuck out to me because you would think that parents with a child with medical needs would do everything they could to be near doctors to get the best care for their child. But truly, the best care is from the Lord! They heed the Lord’s call over their own worries. It makes me wonder how can I have that much trust in God, to the point where I can say, “Send me wherever, make me do whatever, and I will do so without fear for I know that you are a faithful God and you keep your promises.”
And with the CAPA students, too, they put all their trust in Christ. One of our interview questions is, “How have you seen God’s providence in your life?” An answer that comes up again and again is that many students can’t really afford the tuition to attend CAPA. Many have families that they have to provide for and children’s tuition that they also have to pay. But they are not discouraged from attending CAPA. They know that they need to be equipped for ministry and God will provide for them. They all say that the fact that they are at CAPA is because of God’s providence. One student that I interviewed has albinism, and albinos are often killed for superstitious reasons in villages in Malawi. But that doesn’t stop him from going to villages to preach God’s Word. His courage and trust in the Lord is amazing to me. It encourages me (and I hope that it will encourage you too) and is undeniable proof that our God is a faithful God.
As the hymn goes:
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.
“Great is Thy faithfulness!” “Great is Thy faithfulness!”
Morning by morning new mercies I see;
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided—
“Great is Thy faithfulness,” Lord, unto me!
Please continue to pray for our health and safety. Please pray that we would really treasure these last few days that we have here in Malawi–that we would serve with a Christ-like love and that we would place our trust fully in Him.