Saturday, April 26, 2008

I am Home

Well I am back in the great country of Canada. I arrived home just before 11pm on Thursday. When I arrived into Detroit neither of my bags were there. I filed a claim and they said they would deliver them when they came. Friday I took it easy and didn't do too much. I did go and meet up with my boss for a little while just so say hi and see what work he has lined up. I spent sometime in the afternoon trying to get some of my pictures sorted out and tried to get some together to show to people. I have way too many to sort through. In the evening I played some soccer with some friends. I hadn't played in many months and I was pretty sore afterwards.

Dad's back has been quite sore the last couple days so I went to work this morning for him. He works for a company that does tree removal. I only work for part of the morning . This afternoon by bags were delivered. I thought it was nice of them to deliver them right to my door. They flew the bags up to London, Ontario and then drove them over from there. Thankfully everything arrived well and nothing was broken.

Here is an update on my future plans. I had asked for prayer partners for going to India this summer with Teen Missions. I would still appreciate your prayers but they don't need me to lead that team anymore because there aren't enough team members and to many leaders. Lord willing I think I will be staying home and not going with Teen Missions this summer like I have for the past seven summers. My oldest brother Tim and his wife Stephanie are going to Mexico as missionaries in September so our family is planning on getting together for a week at a cottage at the end of June and I want to be here for that.

While I was still in Mozambique I got a call from a friend in Hungary and he asked if I would consider coming there for three weeks and help replace some windows in his church and do some drywalling. If I go it would be the last two weeks of May and the first part of June. I would appreciate your prayers that I would know the Lord's will in this.

Thank you so much for standing with me. Thanks to those of you who have sent me words of encouragement. Please feel free to let me know how I can pray for you.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Beautiful Sites of Lichinga

I don't think these pictures need any explanation. God said it all

Looking from the Wilcox over to the airport.

It has already been over a week since I wrote the last email. Last Tuesday Annelisa & Antoninette flew to Beira which is the largest or second largest city in the country. They were going to help prepare for a ladies conference which starts tomorrow and goes till Saturday.

I had an excellent last week in Lichinga. I was able to finish up all the projects I had started and do a few other small ones. I finally got the roof on the Laundry area where I had built the wash tub. I finished the incinerator and got several of the pieces for a second bunk bed made. I poured a concrete lintel over a bathroom doorway in the girl’s dorm. I replaced all the hand controls on Peter’s motor bike and the speedometer cable. Those were things that needed to be done since he had his accident when he rear ended a car and dislocated his shoulder. Please continue to pray for his shoulder as it is still giving him pain and he doesn’t have all that much strength in that arm.

The Finished Roof

I wasn't sure if I had put a finished picture of the tub on here or not.

The Incinerator

The garbage will all sit on the bars and they lite a fire under it then the ash falls through as it burns.

The form for the concrete lintel

The finished product
God has provided bikes for three of the guys here, in awesome ways. For the first week I was here there was a lady by the name of Esther here I cannot remember if I had mentioned her or not. Anyways before she left she prophesied to Moses that he would receive a red motor bike. He didn’t tell anyone nor did she. Not more then a week later Jesse and Tanya one of the missionary couples here gave their red almost new motor bike to Moses. The Lord had shown them about two weeks earlier that he wanted them to do this and they knew nothing about what Esther had told Moses. God has blessed Jesse and Tanya with money to buy a car but they are waiting to get to Maputo to buy one. For the last few weeks they have been riding their bikes everywhere to go to town and get groceries and going to the villages to evangelise.

God also put it on Tyren’s heart that he wanted Gazany and Foster two other young men here to have bicycles. Tyren mentioned it on his blog that if anyone wanted to help purchase bikes for these two guys to let him know. One lady called them here in Mozambique that night and said that she would like to buy one and then not to long after someone else said they would like to buy the other one. These guys were so surprised that they now have their own bikes, but they also understand why God gave them to them. There are for young men Moses, Victor, Foster and Gazany. They are all in their twenties and the Lord is calling all of them to reach out to the villages all around them. Now they all have bikes to be able to go because many of the villages are very far away, but they have such a passion to share Christ and they live Christ as well it is so evident in their lives. Gazany and Foster worked with me on some of the project that I was working on. These men know how to work and they work very hard, one week straight they worked mixing concrete by hand and then digging trenches for foundations for the administrative building. They know who they are serving and they know He is Worthy.

My brother Mark sent 14 solar panels with me when I came and we finally on my second last day there got around to making a frame to hold all the panels. As it is right now they are using a small generator to run their laptops and things because they don’t have enough solar power. (They home school and use laptops for a lot of their school work.) Yes I know the battery exploded because of being over charged but that is partly because they didn’t have an inverter so they couldn’t use the 24V power for their 220V computers and things. They do have the inverter now and it seems to be working well but not quite as much power as they need. They don’t run any lights or other appliances of any kind on that power yet. Everything is by candle light after sunset. Mark is working to try and find a new control box to regulate the power going to the batteries so that they won’t explode anymore batteries.

The framed solar panels. Peter is still going to get glass to put over top of them before he installs them.

Monday was my last full day so we had some ice cream that afternoon which they don’t hardly ever have because it costs almost $10.00 for 2 L. It was very nice though and we all enjoyed it very much. That evening Tiffany made spaghetti for all of us in our house. They don’t have it very often and it is a real treat when they do. There was meat in the sauce which was very exciting for all of us because we don’t eat meat very much because it costs so much.

Tuesday was the final day for Tiffany and me in Lichinga. Tiffany flew with me until we got to Beira where she was going to the ladies conference for the week. We got all packed up and walked to the airport to check in. We had to walk because the brakes aren’t working on the Land Rover. It is only about an eight minute walk. We checked in at 9am and then walked back to the house because the flight wasn’t going to leave till 11:40am. We went back at 11 and waited for 45 minutes and then they told us the flight was delayed and it wouldn’t be arriving till 3pm. Back to the house we went and by this time we were glad we weren’t any farther from the airport. At 3 we went back and then at 3: 40pm the plane finally came and we took off around 4:15, over four hours later then was scheduled. I arrived in Maputo at about 9pm that evening.

This is what the dorm looked like when I left.

Inside the dorm

This is the administrative building that will have offices and a clinic and maybe room for a few people to live there as well. They are putting a large addition on the right side where they have done all the digging.
The Wilcox's House with their water tower in the distance.Annelisa made up a recipe for fried pastries and I really like them so I got the recipe and made them for our house and they were a big hit. I became know as the pastry man.

They are very easy to make and very tasty too.

3 Cups Flour (All measurements approximate because it is a home made recipe.)

½ Cup Oil

½ Cup Sugar

1 Tsp Salt

1 Cup Water

Mix all ingredients till just a little softer then normal pastry dough. Roll out to about ¼ inch thick. Fry in about ¼ inch of oil till they are light brown and you can poke them with a fork and tell that they are not doughy in the middle. Once they are taken out of the oil sprinkle a little white sugar on top. This makes about 30 pieces 2 ½ X 2 ½ inches.

It is now Wednesday morning and I am back at the Oasis where I stayed before and I am to fly to J’burg in about 4 hours. Then I am there for a day before I fly back to the states and I hope to be home by Thursday evening Lord willing

A Letter from a Farm Kid

Here is a funny email that someone sent me thought you might like it.

Dear Ma and Pa,
I am well. Hope you are.
Tell Brother Walt and Brother Elmer the Marine Corps beats working for old man Minch by a mile. Tell them to join up quick before all of the places are filled. I was restless at first because you got to stay in bed till nearly 6 AM. but I am getting so I like to sleep late. Tell Walt and Elmer all you do before breakfast is smooth your cot, and shine some things. No hogs to slop, feed to pitch, mash to mix, wood to split, fire to lay.Practically nothing.Men got to shave but it is not so bad,there's warm water. Breakfast is strong on trimmings like fruit juice, cereal, eggs, bacon, etc., but kind of weak on chops, potatoes, ham, steak, fried eggplant, pie and other regular food, But tell Walt and Elmer you can always sit by the two city boys that live on coffee.Their food plus yours holds you till noon when you get fed again.It's no wonder these city boys can't walk much. We go on 'route marches,' which the platoon sergeant says are long walks to harden us. If he thinks so, it's not my place to tell him different.A 'route march' is about as far as to our mailbox at home. Then the city guys get sore feet and we all ride back in trucks. This will kill Walt and Elmer with laughing. I keep getting medals for shooting.I don't know why. The bulls-eye is near as big as a chipmunk head and don't move, and it ain't shooting at you like the Higgett boys at home. All you got to do is lie there all comfortable and hit it.You don't even load your own cartridges.They come in boxes.
> Then we have what they call hand-to-hand combat training. You get to wrestle with them city boys. I have to be real careful though, they break real easy.It ain't like fighting with that ole bull at home I'm about the best they got in this except for that Tug Jordan from over in Silver Lake. I only beat him once.He joined up the same time as me, but I'm only 5'6' and 130 pounds and he's 6'8' and near 300 pounds dry. Be sure to tell Walt and Elmer to hurry and join before other fellers get onto this setup and come stampeding in.

Your loving daughter,

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Sorry this is an email I sent out several days ago and I am just getting around to posting it here with pictures. I will try and post some up to date things in a little while.

Greetings from Lichinga,

I cannot believe it, Lord willing I will be home in Ontario in one week from today. I am so thankful for the three weeks and a bit that I have had here so far. God has blessed me so much and helped me to completed many different projects, most of which I had never done before. This just reminds me that he doesn’t call the equipped but he equips the called. He has all the skills and abilities you and I need, if we will only trust Him to supply them when we ask for them.

Last Tuesday afternoon I started building a garbage incinerator. I got it half finished and then didn’t have the steel rebar to continue so it has been on hold till now, hopefully I will be getting the steel this afternoon. Wednesday I finished putting the roof on the Laundry area that I made about two weeks ago. Thursday I finished bricking in around the windows on the Bible School house. I also put several window stays on the Wilcox’s windows so that they wouldn’t be blowing in the wind and break and more windows.

The Beginning of the Incinerator

Friday morning I was working about 150 ft from the Wilcox’s house and I heard this loud bang. Moses (A Malawian that works here) and I went to the house to see what happened. A car battery that they had hooked up to some solar panels had exploded when Annelisa had gone over near it to get something. The battery acid went all over here arm and in her face and eyes. Immediately Debbie ran and took here and started rinsing her arms and face with water and calling out to the Lord for healing. We all started singing songs of praise to the Lord and asking for Annelisa’s healing. It is a miracle, there in no sign of and skin damage whatsoever and she has no problem with here eyes. Debbie and Moses both had clothes that got burned from the acid while cleaning up but Praise be to the Lord Annelisa wasn’t hurt at all. She had lost some hearing in here one ear because of how loud the explosion was but that returned in about a day or two. God takes care of His children. The battery had been over charged and that was why it exploded.

Thanks so much for your prayers for when we went to Che Utumulie (This is the village name, it actually means Mr. Utumulie which is the name of the chief and that is how the villages get there names, from the chief.) Friday afternoon. We went and sang song as the people gathered. Then Peter shared the gospel and they performed a drama to show how Satan has put us all in bondage but Jesus has come to set us free. After the drama Peter shared a bit more and then two men gave their lives to the Lord. We were so encouraged. Emmanuel was one of the men that accepted the Lord and he said he wanted to come to the church service they have here at the base on Sunday.

Friday evening the Wilcox invited me for supper which they do quite often. Normally I am responsible to make my own suppers. Which usually consist of pasta, whatever vegetables I have a can of tuna and a little bit of seasoning of some kind or sometimes a peanut butter and jam sandwich. So I was at the Wilcox Friday night we had a great supper and then we played the chocolate game. They asked me if I had ever played, I said I hadn’t but I sure would like to try it. We all sat in a circle with a table in the center and on it was a chocolate bar. We had a dye and we would each roll it and when someone got a six they would sit down at the table put on a hat and scarf take a knife and fork and start eating chocolate until someone else gets a six. You can be sure we all enjoy that game and I would really like to play it again sometime.

Playing the Chocolate Game

Sunday mornings we usually start singing songs of praise to the Lord around 9am for about half an hour or so in the small building where the church comes together until most people have arrived. Emmanuel (The man that accepted the Lord on Friday) came before 7am I guess he wanted to make sure he didn’t miss anything. Every Sunday there are several people who have testimonies of what God has done or what God is doing in their lives. I am always encouraged by them. Of course Annelisa shared here testimony of how God protected her from the battery acid. After the service Emmanuel said that he wanted to be baptized. They sat down with him and made sure he understood what it was about and then a group of us took a twenty minute walk to a near by fish pond and he was baptized with the fish. Emmanuel has a real heart to share Christ with others and wants them to enjoy the relationship that he has come into.

My House Mates
Jesse and Tanya

Tyren, Tiffany, Amerel and Isaiah

Monday I started making bunk beds for the girl’s dorm. I have finished one and I have started on the second but I don’t have enough wood to finish it. It has been fun making these beds. I have never really made anything with mortise and tannin joints before. The mortise is a hole you chisel in one piece of would and the tannin is the piece of wood you put in the hole. I am using this technique to join all the wood . Then I have to drill holes through the joints and dowel them to keep the pieces from coming apart. The thing is they don’t have dowel here so I have to make my own which has been interesting. I have been blessed to have a few power tools like a circular saw, drill and an electric plain but much of it still has to be done with the chisel and hammer. It has been good for me to learn some new carpentry skills.

Making some of the tannins with the saw

One set of bunk bed ends finished

Some people have been asking about orphans, because I had told you that the Wilcox were working with orphans. They did have quite a few living with them for a while but some of there uncles and aunts have come from Malawi and are now taking care of them. At the moment there aren’t any orphans here but Lord willing they will have 24 orphan girls move into the dorm at the end of June. Their desire is to raise these girls up to have a heart to go and share Jesus Christ in all the villages in Niassa which is their state here in Northern Mozambique. The Yao people that they are working with are one of the still unreached people group in the world that have to heart the gospel before Christ will return Matt 24:14. The Yao people do not have a Bible in their own language yet and most of them have heard nothing about the Lord Jesus. The Yao people are in northern Mozambique and in northern Malawi as well. The Wilcox want to eventually have an orphanage for boys as well and they would also like to have a school. There are so many kids that don’t go to school but the schools are already packed with about one hundred children per teacher, I don’t envy their job.

Monday, Peter took me to immigration and I was able to get a five day extension on my visa. My visa is good for 30 days and I am here for 32 days and if I didn’t get the extension then I would have to pay $50.00 for every day I spend in Moz over the 30. I am supposed to get my passport back on Monday and I fly on Tuesday to Maputo. I would appreciate your prayers that I would actually get my passport on Monday, because I cannot fly without it.

Second Round for the Cinnamon Rolls

I made Cinnamon rolls again because Peter wasn't here last time I made them and I figured I would make them be for the twins left. The left Tuesday the day after this for Beira to go to a ladies conference. They were going a week early to help with preparation for the conference.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

We Serve a Faithful God

I have access to the internet a little sooner then I thought I would, but I’ll take whatever chance I get. I pray that this letter finds you all in good health physically and spiritually. There are a few verses that really encouraged me this morning that I would like to share with you. John 16:15 Jesus says “All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.” It just really hit me that all that the Father has is given to me. I have His strength, power and love but it is my choice if I will use it or try to just do things in my own strength, power and love which I have none, but I still try sometimes. I am so thankful that God is helping me to rely on Him more and more. John 16:33b “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart: I have overcome the world.” I don’t know where you are at and what struggles you are facing right now, but Jesus knew that it was coming and He has given you all that you need to be an over comer as well. 1Tim 3:12 “Indeed all who live Godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.” But thanks be to God who has already given us all that we need, we already have it and now we just have to live in the good of it. I hope this might encourage you as you continue on your journey with Father.

Here are a few pictures of some of the things I talked about in my second update. If you aren't getting my updates and would like to please email me

I went up a large hill near the base here and took a few pictures, this one being one of them.

With my camera stuck in the tree I was able to get me in the picture.

This is one of the windows I am working at putting in the Bible School. I know it doesn't look to pretty but it isn't finished yet.

A sunset over the village of Che Utumulie where we showed the Jesus Film.

We are getting set up to show the film as people are coming.

I made the mistake of mentioning that I can make cinnamon rolls so they weren’t going to let me leave without making them before I leave so Saturday morning I made 50 cinnamon rolls and we got all the foreign missionaries and a few others together and we all had them for breakfast. It was the first time the Wilcox’s had cinnamon rolls, I guess they are not an Australian thing, but they might be now.

Saturday morning while I was up at Wilcox’s make the cinnamon rolls Debbie said “Oh Andrew Peter asked me to ask you if you would speak at church Sunday morning and I meant to ask you last night but I forgot.” I said I would not know what it was God wanted me to speak on. It wasn’t too much notice but other times when I have been in Africa I have been asked Sunday morning to preach, so I was thankful I had a little more time to seek the Lord. I spoke on who were are in Christ and the privileges and responsibility that comes with that.

My bosses wife gave me a few pairs of sandals to bring here to Moz to give away. Her sister had bought them in Mexico but they had never been used. When I got here I gave them to Wilcox to give to whoever they felt needed them most. Two of the biggest pairs they felt the Lord was telling them to give to two of the guards James and Christopher. Sunday morning James got up to testify of the goodness of God. He is from Malawi and has had to make several trips back because of deaths in his family. His brother, wife and most recently his father died. This last time he was in Malawi the two children of his brother that died asked James for some shoes. James said he didn’t have any money but felt the Lord was telling him to sell his shoes and buy his brothers children some shoes. He didn’t know what he was going to do for footwear but knew God would provide. When he returned here to Moz Debbie gave him the sandals. He said “The shoes I sold were cheap once but the one I received are really good ones.” I was just reminded that before we call our Father knows our needs and is providing. Those sandals were bought months ago and God knew exactly who they were for even though they lady that bought them didn’t. Everyone was very encouraged.

James and I

There is also young lady that was demon possessed and the Wilcox’s spent a lot of time praying for her and visiting her and even had her come stay with them for a while. Finally God freed her from all of Satan’s control on her life and she accepted Jesus as her Lord and Saviour. She now walks six hours, three hours each way to come and fellowship with her brothers and sisters on Sunday morning. She loves the Lord and often carries one of her children on her back with her. There was a pair of women’s sandals and they fit her perfectly. God knows our needs and is delighted to give us good gifts.

L/R Debbie, Lucia(She is the one that was possessed), Annelisa, Mikialia, Karmelia

Something personally that was very encouraging for me recently was God’s provision for one of my plane tickets home. I had bought my round trip ticket from Detroit to Maputo and back but the Wilcox’s said they would book my flights from Maputo to Lichinga and back. When they emailed me and told me they had booked my flight it was much less then I had thought it would be for a round trip ticket. I got here and found out that they had only got a one way ticket. It was no fault of theirs they never said it was a round trip ticket I just thought it was. I didn’t have the money though to buy the ticket to get back to Maputo on the 22nd. I didn’t tell anyone I was just praying and making my needs known to the Lord and he provided through someone not on this continent. I have seen God provide in many ways but I must confess that I was worry that God might not come through. Why do I doubt you Lord you have never been unfaithful?

I spent all day Monday working on the Wilcox’s laundry tub and I just finally finished it today, which is Tuesday morning. Next I am supposed to be making some wooden boxes for storage of things for when guests come. Lord willing the wood will come in and I can also start making bunk beds for the girl’s dorm. It was supposed to be here a week ago, but when they were to go and get the wood one of the guys was afraid to go because of things to do with witch craft. Witch craft is very strong her and with out Christ people do have reason to be afraid of Satan’s power. So many live their lives in fear, because they have seen people who have been cursed by witch doctors and they have died or they are crazy or maybe have some disease that cannot be curried. Jesus is the only one who can and is setting people free from all of this, because He has overcome the world.

This is the Laundry tub almost finished, I don't have any pictures of it finished yet.

It would be such an encouragement to me to hear what God is teaching you and how He is meeting your needs, if you have a few minutes to send me an email. Thanks so much for your prayers please keep us in your prayers especially Friday as we go back to the village where we showed the Jesus Film to start doing some disciplining of those who accepted Christ.

I have two weeks left, my half the time is gone already.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Home Sweet Home in Lichinga

I do feel very much at home here and in the house where I am staying they say I am just like family. Life is so simple and yet still seems comfortable.

This is the house I am staying in with the two couples Jesse and Tana and Tyren and Tifainy and there two kids Isiaih Amerel and Isiah

My very own room. Elias Wilcox who is 12 made the nice bedside table for me. They had a lot of goodies on it for me and several cards welcoming me.

This is where they have there church services.

Here is the Old Land Rover that they are looking to the Lord to replace.

This is the girls dorm that I am working on putting the Veranda roof around.

Putting up the roof supports.

I am starting a bit of a Laundry shelter for them to work under during the rainny season.

Victor and I staring the brick Laundry Tub.