Newsletter (May 7, 2009)

Dear all, Dr Fan was suddenly instructed to take his holiday at short notice, so he has gone back to China and will come back on 7 June.  We gave him a church address in his home town.  Please pray that he will witness to his family of his new faith, continue to study the Bible and pray and attend church services.  Timothy has had one meeting with Young Fan.  He was full of questions about the goodness of God and he poured his heart out and talked about his tragic past.  Please pray specially for him and for Timothy to have wisdom in talking with him.  Dr Fan also brought us to meet Dr Niu and he showed great interest in knowing the Bible more and very much wanted to talk about the Christian faith.  We will meet him again this Friday.  We thank God for these opportunities to witness our faith to the Chinese people in Ndola, but please pray that we can manage our time well.

A student invited Zara and Phyllis (Timothy’s colleague in the library) to visit her family in Kitwe during the weekend.  They had a very good time together and Zara came to know her family better.  Zambians in general are very hospitable, somewhat like Biblical times.  If they have a visitor wanting to spend a night with them, they will always find a bed for him, possibly at the expense of their children.  Whenever someone turns up at meal times, the host will most likely ask the visitor to join the family at the table and share the food with him.  If they invite you for a meal, they will always cook a chicken dish, among other things.  We always admire how the Zambians handle all these unexpected events.  Visitors never announce when they will come.  No appointment is needed and you can always turn up at a friend’s place any time.  You will always be welcome.  There is always food to spare .  Many people have told us to visit them at any time we like.  This is very different from what we used to do and in many ways such hospitality is really good.  This is one thing that we need to adjust to and learn not to be panicked when unexpected events happen.

We have been here exactly one year now.  We can truly say that God is with us and He is faithful and He looks after us, and we are comforted and encouraged by His words.  We could see His guiding hand in many instances and experience that He listens to our and your prayers.  We also thank God that SIM Zambia and the missionaries here are very good to us and we get lots of support and encouragement from them.  Thank God that we are able to adjust to life in Zambia, although sometimes, even now, we could feel frustrated and discouraged.  We are thankful that we live in Ndola, a big city (but not too big).  This makes our adjustment much easier than serving in a rural area.  We can enjoy the conveniences of living in a city, have electricity and running water.  Our fellow missionaries in the rural area have a much harder life and they really sacrifice a lot in order to serve our God.  One area in the North Western province in which SIM has several missionaries has had no power since Easter.  The sole transformer that supplies power to the area was burnt down and no one knows when a replacement will come.  Thanks again for praying for us faithfully.  We are continuing to be encouraged to know that we have so many supporters back home.  Thank you.  With Christian love.

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