Friday, April 12, 2013


In December, I rushed home to attend the funeral of my maternal Grandmother.  The members of the Baptist Churches in our area came to visit me and give their condolences.  I cannot tell you how touching it is to have people walk 3 hours from their homes together and bring gifts to you at such a time.  Gifts that are a precious sacrifice from them and their families.  To be accepted as their's, into the family.  To you and myself that read this blog and are my friends, the amount of money handed to me to help with the funeral expenses may not seem like much in comparison to the cost of gas, airplane ticket, meals, etc., but it spoke volumes of their acceptance and love for me and my family.  In the years I have been here I have spoken to the ladies of our Bible Studies about my grandmother "Mammaw".  I have shared the things she taught me about how to take care of myself, my family and people.  Growing up country, I have shared her cooking, by my hands, with them and they have enjoyed.  In those times of sharing I have expressed the example we are for generations to come through the people that are in, or even pass through, our lives.  When my Mammaw was in the hospital suffering from the last severe stroke and was not awake, I was sitting in a little village church with my feet in the sand and sharing biscuits, Mammaw's Biscuits, with a faithful group of lady friends and their children.  We talked about the recipe and what happens when you leave out the most important ingredient.  During these precious hours of sharing jelly biscuits, Mrs. Njapau, advised the group, "I haven't tasted jam since 1969."  I have learned not to be astonished when my national friends tell me such things.  I just thanked God with a smile in my heart to share such a moment.  Then before I could invisibly compose my self, Mrs. Njapau continued, "I am not sure why you love us this way, sharing your special food and knowledge of how God loves us.  Then she paused, but with respect we waited and gave her time to continue.  I do not think I or we have ever been loved this way."  

Members of Katunda Baptist Church
Mrs. Njapau, Sharon, Kennedy and Reuben

At that moment, my Mammaw's heart and mind were fighting with her body to stay in this world and I was there juggling with emotions of how God has so greatly blessed me by the wonderful people He so intricately placed in my life that have shown me the very love that Mrs. Njapau was so grateful to be receiving.  One of those people being my Grandmother.  How many times had she prepared those biscuits for me?  How many times had she taken the time to be diligent to show me each step?  How many times did she allow me to try as she watched and guided?  I grew up next door to her so the answer is MANY!  The members of these churches have shared their lives with us and fed us at their homes for years.  They have given us chickens, ground nuts, pumpkins, cassava, and more from their fields.  "Why do you love us this way?"  "Oh' Mrs. Njapau, because God in his grace has allowed me to be loved this way and in turn He is loving you this way as well."  We as believers hold within ourselves the very reciprocation of God's love.  Love people and they will feel His love.  Do not be discouraged by the statistics of those who will not accept or receive your love or those who only use your friendship.  We too, were users and abusers of love given so freely to us.  Romans 5:6-9 "For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person - though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die - but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." We were given the greatest gift and sacrifice by one who was perfect and without sin.  May we continue to recognize that to the fullest each day in hopes it may overflow from us in such a way that others feel it as well.

The ladies of Kaoma Baptist Central visiting for the funeral after my return.  They came to pray with me and bring me a new citenge and a set of drinking glasses.

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