Newsletter (September 6, 2012)

Dear all, Just before we went to Lusaka on 25 August we had another blood slide test taken and both of us still show traces of malaria. So we took another type of medication and it seems the malaria has finally gone.

On TCCA Sunday, we went to a big church pastored by one of our graduates. It has two services, one at 7:30 am and the other at 10am. We were quite surprised to find that the first service has many more people attending, with the church nearly full. The preaching was done by another TCCA graduate and two of our students gave their testimonies. At the end of both services many people came to buy Bibles and books from us. It seems that it was the first time someone has set up a book stall at this church and very few people have seen the types of Bibles and books that we sell. In the end we managed to sell a lot of Bibles and books and people were very appreciative of what we had done and kept asking when we would go again. Actually we are trying to wind down this fundraising project because the main bookseller that we use has changed their shipping policy and rather than charging 35 per cent of the book cost, it is now by weight. That makes the whole operation unsustainable as shipping will increase by three to five times, and that makes a book or Bible too expensive for ordinary people here.

We did have a very long talk with our [SIM] director and former director. They expressed their wishes strongly and encouraged us to consider returning to Zambia after our home assignment. They would like us to relocate to Lusaka and serve God from the head office. Please continue to pray for us so that we will be able to discern God’s will for us next year. To move to Lusaka is not an easy thing to do, but if God wants us to serve him in the capital city, we will go. At the moment we do not know whether to go or stay in New Zealand, but we trust that God will guide and lead us.

It so happened the Reformed Baptist Annual Family Conference was held in Lusaka from 27–31 August. This year’s theme is mission, which is a very relevant topic as very few churches in Zambia are mission-minded. Our pastor here gave the keynote address on Monday evening which we attended. We have never seen so many cars parked in all the streets near the church where the conference was held. Eventually we found a space and went into the church (a very big church) which was packed full of people. This year 1200 participants registered, plus many like us who just attended the odd sessions. What an experience!

This week is the last week of term break and term 3 will begin next Monday. Our academic dean has announced his resignation and he will serve till December. As we will also be leaving TCCA next year, we are worried about the future of this fine institution. We trust that God is in control of everything and we pray that he will intervene and will not allow it to lose its direction and vision. With Christian love.

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