We’ve been in Swaziland for more than two months now and have settled into our new “normal”. As if there is really anything normal about moving your family to a new country, on a new continent, 9,000 miles away. Crazy I tell you! Just Crazy! Everything is different here. They operate at a different pace. Swazi time is different from American time. The hustle and bustle of the daily grind in America doesn't seem to exist in Swaziland. If the internet company says they will be at your house at 9:00am, they may be there at 9:00am. However, it is more likely they will show up at 3:00pm or maybe not even until the next day or maybe not at all. And it's only taken two solid months to actually have working internet. Right now means maybe now or within the next day or so. Now Now means this very minute. Something as simple as buying groceries can turn into an all-day affair as you search for something as simple as sour cream. Flat tires on rough, rocky, bumpy country roads is common place. The convenience store nearby hasn't had diesel for more than two months which causes problems without proper planning.
With all the first-world problems that we have experienced, they all seem insignificant in this third world country. We are so blessed to be here and to experience all that God has for us in this beautiful place. Our boys have adjusted so well and are doing a great job being big brothers to all the children here. Eli has started school on Project Canaan and loves Teacher Amber and all his new friends. Sam is helping the younger Emseni kids in developing their fine motor skills. Nate has had the opportunity to work in both the Kafundza woodworking shop building baby beds, etc and with the Aquaponics project growing vegetables by using fish. He loves learning new things and helping out wherever he can. Shelly is busy with bible studies, ministry groups and counseling all over Project Canaan as she develops relationships with all the wonderful ladies here. I keep busy in the front office helping implement new processes to improve accounting systems.
In Over my Head
by Jen Johnson
"I have come to this place in my life I'm full but I've not satisfied This longing to have more of You And I can feel it my heart is convinced I'm thirsty my soul can't be quenched You already know this but still
Come and do whatever You want to"
As we adjust to our new life here, it became very apparent very quickly that we are in way over our heads! It’s too big! The problems in Swaziland are too great! With literally thousands of children suffering from hunger all over this country, devastating poverty and disease are running rampant. Oh, did I mention witchcraft and rape? We are in over our heads. Swaziland has the highest rate of HIV in the world. Swaziland also has the highest TB (Tuberculosis) incidence in the world AND 80% of those infected with TB are co-infected with HIV. We are in over our heads! There's just too many problems here. Hopelessness is prevalent within the country! The needs are too great and the resources are too few. How can we make a difference? What can a family from Texas possibly do?
"I'm standing knee deep but I'm out where I've never been
And I feel You coming and I hear Your voice on the wind
Would You come and tear down the boxes that I have tried to put You in? Let love come teach me who You are again Would you take me back to the place where my heart was only about You And all I wanted was just to be with You? Come and do whatever You want to"
As I pondered these questions, I was reminded that God is Sufficient. God is All-Powerful. God is Healer. Quite honestly, if I am in over my head, then God will show up. That’s where the miraculous happens! Just in the last few weeks Heart For Africa has rescued even more babies. That is more lives that have been saved. Hearts and bodies healed. That is more babies who will get to eat and receive the attention they deserve. It's more babies that are spared from the social injustice that plagues this country. It's babies that the Harps get to love. It's even more babies that the Harp boys get to play with and dote on. It's men and women finding employment. It's men and women being set free by the power of God. As Janine Maxwell always reminds us, do for the one what you wish you could do for all. One by one, we are playing a part, as small and insignificant as may seem at times, in something that is way bigger than us. And we are so honored that God called us!
Matthew 14:29-33 says “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?” And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”
When Peter stepped out of the boat he was definitely in over his head…but God! It took a step of faith to venture into the unknown. It doesn’t take faith to do what you can already do in your own strength. Miracles don’t happen if you’ve got it all figured out. Anyone can wade in knee deep water on the edge of something great, but when you get in over your head you have entered the realm of something miraculous, something supernatural! Only Jesus calls you out on the water!
"Further and further my heart moves away from the shore Whatever it looks like, whatever may come I am Yours
Then You crash over me and I've lost control but I'm free I'm going under, I'm in over my head And You crash over me, and that's where You want me to be I'm going under, I'm in over my head Whether I sink, whether I swim ..It makes no difference when I'm beautifully in over my head…
And I'm beautifully in over my head Beautifully in over my head"
We will never know the full provision of God until, we too, have offered up our best to God. I am in way over my head. I am inept. I am not capable. BUT I serve a God who is more than enough! As we go deeper and deeper into unknown places, places we haven’t been before, His Spirit calls us out on the water and to trust Him, even though we don’t know where He is taking us. I’m holding on tightly to His promises and allowing His love to sweep over me—I’m jumping in!
Are you standing on the edge of something great trying to stay dry, trying to decide if the risk is worth the cost? Do you want to come to the place of knowing His peace and grace and that you are completely safe and secure in His arms? Do you trust Him? Won’t you come for a swim? He’s waiting!
We are still about 10 monthly sponsors short of being fully funded for this year. If God has called you to be a part of our ministry in Swaziland you may donate at http://bit.ly/WeGoYouGo.
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