Dear Family, Friends, and Brethren,
I wanted to write a few thoughts as it has already been about 2 1/2 weeks since we arrived in Addis Ababa. Time seems to have a way of slipping by at a very fast pace. My mother said when I was a little girl that as I got older time would pass quite quickly. Does this mean I am getting “older”?! 🙂
How do I begin to share what God has been doing since we have been here. Brother Jemal and Brother Fikre were busy arranging meetings for us before we arrived, so praise God we have kept busy.
We have had the privilege of having two meetings at one of the universities in Addis, as well as a meeting with the defense ministry fellowship. God has moved in such a marvelous way in every meeting and the word that has been delivered has been fresh and alive each time.
God has been reaching out to these precious people here. The Almighty God is calling them to find a very viable, close relationship with Him; a relationship that brings a person from just hearing about Jesus to truly knowing Him.
On May 25th Barak and Johanna arrived in Ethiopia to be with us. This is Johanna’s first visit to Ethiopia. They arrived early on a Saturday morning, we fed them breakfast, they had some rest (they are young) and that afternoon we went to Brother Fikre’s home fellowship meeting. Barak brought a very good word on making your calling and election sure.
It has been pretty cute; in Amharic they have a word “Tebarak,” which means blessing. So we constantly think they are saying Barak, because they sound so similar. Barak is “Blessed”!!
Brother Jemal and Brother Fikre heard that Johanna takes good pictures, so needless to say they have her snapping shots quite often.
When you look in the Bible you see Ethiopia mentioned 20 times, such as in Psalm 68:31, “Princes shall come out of Egypt; Ethiopia shall soon stretch out her hands unto God.” We sense the wooing of God to these people. God has been opening many new doors and a lot of the doors are with University students that are hearing this word and wanting to know more. Some are graduating and going back to their various homes throughout Ethiopia. What this equates to is the word being planted in many new places as these young people want ministry to come and teach them MORE! Praise God!! We are presently in Gondar, and again the word has been powerful.
As we were driving to a meeting, I saw a young man with a “cart” selling his wares, scarves and such. These people are very industrious and with millions of people many have to be clever to make a living. This young man had taken a wheel chair and somehow rigged a board on it, for a table with an umbrella to shade his wares. He was pushing his “cart” down the street stopping where the business might be. I thought that looked quite clever. Another vendor had taken a baby stroller and rigged it with a board that had earrings and bracelets on it. One of the most interesting ways of transporting an item that we saw was a mini van that had two refrigerators strapped on its roof. Every time the van hit a bump or swerved a bit, it looked like the cargo would tumble, but it did not! Whew. The streets are lined with vendors and you wonder how they make a living but with such a large population there seems to be business for them. Almost all the streets have some sort of little shops, even in the remote areas.
Another interesting occurrence is the goats and cows and donkeys in the streets. The funny thing is many times you will see a donkey laden with his burden of sacks of flour or sticks or cement but seemingly no owner. The donkey is just trotting along in the street with many passersby but no keeper.
I have become fond of a drink they make here. The first time I heard them mention it I thought, “Oh my! Are you sure?” You know me, I do like to try new things, so I did try an avocado smoothie!! They are really good, and although it does have a little sugar in it, what really makes it yummy is when you squeeze lime into it. When we see you sometime, I will have to make a smoothie for you.
We had an interesting experience here in Gondar at a little fellowship on the edge of town. We drove quite a ways to the edge of town and drove back into a little area and were greeted by some very sweet people. We entered a very small room that had benches set up and people were gathered singing. My understanding is this little fellowship meets there regularly. A powerful word was ministered; you could sense the presence of the Holy Spirit and the people were being blessed. What we found out later is this very house had been used for satanic worship and witchcraft, and some of the people in this fellowship had suffered persecution because of it. Isn’t God marvelous that He would bring His Word to show the devil that he is a liar!!
I just want to thank the Lord for His Word and the blessings we have experienced here in Ethiopia. My desire is to be a willing soldier in the wonderful army of God.
One other thought, we were at Selam Children’s Village last week and one of the boys in my Bible class saw me and came up to give me a hug. He began to sing the song we taught them “I May Never March in the Infantry, but I’m in the LORD’S Army!” Oh, yes! I was thrilled!!
Once again, thank you for your prayers.
May God richly bless you all,
A fellow soldier, Mom, Grandma, and Sister Nancy