I went home. Mngwangwa. This is home to me, the place I want to live. The people here are my family, more so than any other place. Here I know I am loved and mean that. There are not many places we can honestly say we are allowed to be ourselves – especially in ministry. But here, I am ‘sister Keta’. The sister is for real. Here is where Floweza Milanzi lives with his 5 children and 3 dependants. There is a young man who is mentally challenged who is always with Him. He once told me that He believes these are the rocks that will cry out if we do not worship God. The things we think are nothing – like this young man. It is always a pleasure to see him. He always has a testimony to tell and song to sing to His God. We spent the morning at Word of Faith Temple (Milanzi’s church) a place I know one day I will call my home church. They are currently meeting in a rundown classroom but they fill the cracks and gaps in the walls with their heart worship and power praise. The people here can sing – no organ, no drum, no acoustic guitar but the melody is awesome.
There is a lady here who comes from very far every time we come into town. She hungers after God in a way I have not even tapped into. She speaks of the Father in a way only one who has walked with Him for years can.
Our subject is the wedding banquet and being clothed in Christ. It is a message of salvation and at the end a small group of teenage kids give their lives to God. It is beautiful to see. THIS is what all this is about.
I never leave this place empty handed. Last Christmas we ministered here and I came home with a chicken and not just any chicken, a black cockerel. This time they bring pumpkins, maize and something called ‘mponda’ which looks like a relative of the pumpkin. There is so much it is overwhelming. A lady even gives me three eggs. These people give their hearts and I am humbled because they think that I bless them and teach them when it is I that am taught and blessed and I that see Jesus in their eyes over and over again. As I write my heart is full and I know that God has given me grace, grace to see this, to experience this, to write about this.
Straight after the Sundat morning service we drive five minutes off to the afternoon leaders meeting which we had begun the previous day. It is so good to be back with the people I love. Here I meet Mr Nkhoma. He is like a father and the most gifted worship leader I have ever met. Even when he claps his hands you know it is worship! He told me once how he used to worship back in the day with his accordion. I long to find one for him. I can only imagine what that will be like. He always talks about how he was created to worship God and I believe him. We have never in the one year we have ministered in Mngwangwa, done it without him being present. He is like the overseer – our overseer. He cycles over one hour to get to the meetings. Everyone here has come straight from church service. There are no breaks or opportunities to have lunch first. They simply live too far away to do that. There are so many lessons to be learnt from the people here. On our way in we found one of the pastors on the road going to church. The drive is one hour and we found him on foot!
This is also the place where Mark Funsani and his wife come. They are a young couple that have won my heart. They always sit together and in the village that is a rare, rare thing. Men usually sit on one side of the room and women on the other. It is the same here except for the Funsani’s and the Milanzi’s. Mr Nkhoma always breaks tradition and sits on the side of the women sometimes. To the uninformed this means nothing but to us… this is incredible. Two couples sitting together. They never used to do this when we first came. It is a treasure to see.
Our subject is the body of Christ. It is truly a pleasure and joy to teach. We have fun together and learn as we go along. We talk about being one body and realising the need for one another. We use the bicycle as an example and how each part makes the whole and how the manufacturer carefully planned each part (its form and function) for the benefit of the whole. We bring in a bicycle to illustrate. It is incredible. There are so many pictures God gives us here to use as illustrations.
Our greatest joy is handing out bibles. We give out about 20. The pastors are excited! There is a concordance and so much revelation in the Word. This of course is in addition to the fact that they receive BIBLES, some for the first time! The others already know who they can give the ones they have to. That is never a problem here. Scarcity of bibles is one thing you can count on.
I love the fact that I am not a visitor here. I am no longer introduced. We know each other and you sense it. They are my family. This is my home!