Hey everyone—Jeffery here!
As Jeremy shared in our previous blog post, yesterday was our final full day in Malawi. Hence, today—made longer by our transit across six time zones—we commenced on our 34+ hour journey back to America, but not until after spending a few more hours in this country we called home for two weeks.
We began our day by sharing one final quick meal with the Ayres, where Bethany continued to demonstrate her great hospitality by preparing two large batches of fruit smoothie enough for the entirety of our remaining team. Afterwards, we helped return the Ayres’ house to its pre-host-9-to-15-persons-for-2-weeks state by stowing away the two tents that they pitched for us for the duration of our stay and miscellaneous other things. We then spent a little more time with the Ayres kids between playing Life and Sushi Go! as we awaited our transport to the airport.
After exchanging our final goodbyes with the Ayres family, Gideon Manda and Matt Kopp came around 10:30am to send us to the airport. From then, checking-in our luggage and passing through security went by quickly, and we soon boarded our first flight—but not until after a team selfie in Lilongwe (LLW):
Sunny skies stood over Lilongwe as we departed:
And during our six hours of travel, we viewed our last African sunset:
However, we accidentally left Grace behind after we de-planed when our shuttle bound for the main terminal departed before she could board.
She did make it back though for our next team selfie, this time in Addis Ababa (ADD):
Eight more hours of travel later, we made a pit stop in Dublin (DUB), during which we observed daybreak and took another (partial) team selfie.
As we continued to travel internationally, we were fed very well. Nathan’s stockpile of our team’s leftover bread, and Caleb’s enjoyment of our leftover meals attest to that.
Now, we have arrived in Washington, D.C., have gone through customs, and are awaiting the final leg of our flight! Another team selfie now that we are at IAD:
During the course of our travel today, there was ample time to look back over these last two weeks and ponder the glory of the God we serve. As we fly hour after hour across time zones and continents, the vastness of our world even with modern aviation technology is evident. Although we served on this STM thousands of miles away from our homes in California, we worship the same God as those whose homes are in Malawi—the same God who makes His sun shine upon the earth from the east to the west, the same God who extends His salvation to the ends of the earth.
In our interviews of the students of CAPA, one question we continually ask is how they have seen God’s providence in their lives; our God indeed is a God of providence.
Our ministry in Malawi was a call to be faithful with the opportunities that He availed to us in the sending of our team.
The missionaries we served in Malawi heeded a call to be faithful with the opportunities that He availed to them to equip pastors and churches to study the Word of God.
The students of CAPA we met in Malawi heeded a call to be faithful with their God-given desires to better know the God of our common salvation to better serve their congregations.
As we continue our journey home, with fresh testimonies of how Christ is faithful to build His church, we recognize that not much may appear to be different in the world we see around us. Yet, God, by His grace, has further shaped my understanding of His ongoing salvific work, and I trust He has shaped that of the rest of our team as well. I pray that we as a team would not return home only to fall back into our daily and weekly busy routines, but would continue to take moments to recognize the global nature of God’s ongoing work today.
Please continue to join us in prayer that:
- God will continue to use the students and faculty of CAPA to grow and equip His church in Malawi and Africa, through their faithfulness to His Written Word.
- the missionary families will continue in faithful and humble service, completely reliant on the strength that only God can supply, especially when difficulties arise or the fruit of their ministry is not immediately apparent.
- our STM team will strive to faithfully serve in our local contexts in like manner to these two weeks of ministry abroad.
- we all will continue to grow in our appreciation for the universal church, and in our participation as God’s instruments of global salvation, to His greater glory.
Thank you for reading our updates and partnering with us in prayer these past two weeks, and return again soon as we share our final few updates!