Author Archives: Zambia Team

Back Home Again

Back in the USA ……..well almost…… Home Sweet Home
We began our journey home on Monday at 1:00 pm headed to Johannesburg. After approximately 3 hours we boarded our plane for the long 17 hour flight to Atlanta, and then home to Indy by 9:00 am. However, some strong headwinds and bad weather in Atlanta forced us to land in San Juan to refuel. Sounds like a good plan, but that means probably a missed connection. It seems our mission will continue a little longer than expected. We continue to be grateful for God’s hand of protection and praise Him through even these minor inconveniences.

Reflecting back over our week in Zambia, particularly spending time with Pastor Patson, there were many lessons learned as we experienced the hand of God working among his people both in Zambia and Traders Point Christian Church in Indianapolis.
Patson is a man of incredible faith and prayer, and being able see how God was answering those prayers was the most incredible blessing. Just a few examples:

In October during the drought, Patson and Patricia had get up at midnight and search for water throughout the compound and walk several miles to find any amount of water they could. They now have fresh running water from the well God provided right on their property! There can be no life without water and watching that clear water run is the perfect illustration of The Lord as our living water,

There are 113+ children able to attend the small school Patson started by the Lord’s leading. These children would not have the opportunity to go to school if not for Patson. They now have hope of finding a life sustaining job through getting an education and over half of them now have sponsors which means they receive a hot meal 4 days a week.

Imprinted in my mind and heart are some parting words Patson left us with. “By loving people, we are loving God”! That is what our mission is all about. Not only do we truly love these brothers and sisters in Ng’ombe, but we feel very much loved by them also and that ‘s why saying goodbye is harder each time.
Until we meet again…………..

Day 9 Zambia 2013 God’s Creation

God’s Incredible Creation

Today is Patson’s 40th birthday and what a day God blessed him with! We started our day by meeting our driver Steve who took us through immigration so we could take a boat across the Zambezi river to the country of Botswana. We were then transported by our guide, Moses, to the Chobe National Park. God delighted us with His creation. A river boat guided us down the river where we could watch crocodiles, hippos, and elephants swimming and playing. After lunch we boarded an open air safari truck and drove through the Bush. Impala, baboons, giraffes, and many elephants passed in front of us, much to our delight. However, the most incredible experience was when our driver found 3 lions drinking from the river and then walking thru the bushes. This is very rare to find lions in the afternoon. All at once the lions were hunting prey. It’s almost impossible to describe the tension as we watched the natural process and the hunting skills of the lead lion who was communicating with her tail to the other two. They stopped immediately and one started to circle around behind the Impala. The hunt was terminated as a bird, of all things, put out a distress cry and the impala bolted to safety. It was breathtaking!!

Genesis 1:24
And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.” And it was so. God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.

To God be the Glory.

Zambia Day 8 “Are we there yet?”

Day 8  Zambia  March 15, 2013

Are We there yet??

We rose early to catch our “bus” to Livingstone to visit one of the Seven Wonders of the World; Victoria Falls.  We were a little surprised to see our bus was really a VW type bus.  9 people, all our luggage and backpacks made a very tight squeeze to say the least.  The trip normally takes 5-6 hours but this one was 7 ½!   There are even speed bumps on the highway which of course we had to stop and crawl over.   The Zambian landscape was beautiful to look at and so interesting to see the rural villages with their thatched roof huts out in the middle of nowhere.  We were amazed to watch children walking miles to the nearest school.

Even though the ride was long, God more than made up for our discomfort by allowing us to enjoy the powerful  Victoria Falls!  The majesty and power was breath taking.  Gary, Bryce and Denise braved walking across the bridge over the river in the upside down rain mist from the falls, which drenched them thoroughly.  Even “Flat Chuck” had his picture taken by the falls.

The evening was completed by pizza for dinner and fellowship with Patson & Patricia.  We were blessed to hear him speak about his meeting With Aaron Brockett in 2005 and how thankful he is how the Lord has orchestrated our partnership.  Patson is so encouraged that God has shown him how God himself will connect him with other followers of Christ. Patson feels so humbled by how God has blessed him by bringing the teams from Traders Point to work with him.  Patson reminded us how the Holy Spirit led him to the internet cafe to send email to Aaron, but struggled with it was the right time to do this.  The Spirit continued to put the urgency on his heart.  He was surprised to receive immediate response from Aaron, but knew this was confirmation from God.  This was the same Sunday Aaron was to preach from

James on the command to take care of the widows and orphans.   Patson concluded with the challenge to always trust God, and he would like to write a book as testimony to God’s Faithfulness.   They are very tired because after we left yesterday, many people came to see the new wall and gate and ask how all this had happened and he was able to share God’s love and blessing……. Amen! Alleluia! Amen!

Zambia Day 7 “The Last Day in NG’ombe”

Day 7 Zambia Thursday March 14, 2013
The Last Day in Ng’ombe

What an eventful day we had today in Ng’ombe! God’s power was felt by all. The welcome we receive when we arrive is heartwarming and humbling all at the same time. The children crowd all around just to be touched by us, fighting over who gets to hold each of our hands. Patricia told us that they feel very special when touched by a “mazungos” ( white people) We are the ones who feel so special being loved by them. Denise and Brenda enjoyed serving the kids nshima ( corn mush) beans and cabbage. 60 of the 100 children are being sponsored which means they get a meal 4 days a week at the school.

Jay has felt affirmation that the team exemplifies the Lord’s teaching on many memebers but all one body. A great observation is that we are just one part of the team God has put together to minister with Pastor Patson and the Christian Hope Ministries. Another example of One Body in Christ.

Bryce finished all of the gate but when it was to be hung, the welding macine kept shorting out. Frustration led to a special time of fellowship and discipleship with the young men hanging around that Bryce truly enjoyed. God then orchestrated a new relationship with several young men who came and used a very crude but efficient welding machine. It consisted of car batteries, wire attached to a pair of pliers! Unfortuantely Sam was only using regular sunglasses while welding which could lead to early blindness. Bryce blessed him by leaving him his welding helme, jacket, and gloves. Frustration led to blessing remindg us that God’s ways are not our ways.

Jay, Tina and Patson were able to visit another school to glean some information on how their process could help Patson’s school grow and be efficient. Peter was very encouraging to Patson and again a new relationship.

The women’s group finished strong with lessons on Jesus being the “I Am”
I am the Bread of Life
I am the Gate
I am the living water
I am the true vine
I am the Way, Truth, and Life
The Gospel was shared aong many “Amens”!
We then led the women into the Biblical Truth how the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve. Tina read John 13:1-5, 12-17 depicting Jesus washing the disciples feet. We then proceeded to wash the feet of each woman, put lotion on their feet and told them that Jesus loved them by name. Very powerful moments for the women as well as Tina, Brenda and Denise.

Walls being built, and walls being torn down as relationships are being built. One of the greates t accomplishments has been to watch the discipleship going on not only with the women but especially with the men. Gary has developed a very special relationship with Edward who is 19 years old and has spent many hours working alongside him and growing his faith.

God is at work in the village of Ng’ombe and it has been a blessing to be a very small part of it!

Zambia Fitness Class Day 6

Tina led the women’s class today discussing how we can overcome temptation by using the Word of God and following His plan for escape. The women broke up into small groups and then shared to the whole group when finished. This is a new format for them and they loved it. We also discussed the truth about Malaria and how it is transmitted vs. Common beliefs. Brenda shared with the ladies how to prevent gum disease and tooth decay, and a hands on demonstration of proper tooth brushing and why it’s necessary to keep our teeth for a life time. They seemed to enjoy receiving a new toothbrush and the instruction and were surprised that they shouldn’t be brushing with salt.

Our new friends in Zambia are having a wonderful time laughing and enjoing our teaching them new exercises and line dancing after our Bible study time. Denise has found her calling as a fitness instructor as well as mason, and the children’s favorite playmate. It is so much fun to laugh together and talk about issues women worldwide face. Even though our cultures are very different, God created us all in His image and at the core we are the same. We all enjoy fellowshipping together discussing our children and the hardships we may face as we raise them. Discussing marriage and how it can be hard at times. We even share the same concern about how hard it is to keep ourselves at a healthy weight…….Imagine that! We ended today with a group photo which they love. Tomorrow have something very special planned for them so we are looking forward to seeing them on our last day.

The wall continues to rise and is awesome to watch all that are coming together to help build it. Bryce is armored up with his welding helmet, gloves, and jacket in the blazing sun, welding the new gate, Jay is his faithful assistant. Gary has taken the responsibility of putting the smooth finish on the mortar, in between hauling cinder blocks to the wall. It’s beyond words to describe the commotion going on all around as 100+ children are going in and out of the school, local women coming to draw water out of the new clean water well that the Lord provided, men hauling mortar in wheel barrows, Bryce welding a large gate, women cooking and toddlers roaming all around in the space of approximately ¼ acre!

Dinner and a nice shower is on the evening agenda and much anticpated for sure.

Zambia Day 5

Happy Birthday Isaac!!

Today was Isaac Sakala’s 17th birthday. The Zambian culture celebrates their birthdays by sneaking up on them at some point of the day and pour water over them. While Isaac was carrying the cinder blocks to the wall, his mother and others surprised him with a good dousing of water. There was great laughter and smiles from all who were watching, especially from Isaac himself!

It was a big work day with the wall now well under construction and Bryce in his element designing and welding a gate for the property. It was a great day watching not only the teamwork but the discipleship happening during their work. Gary was able to have a long discussion with young Edwin whose family. persecutes him for following Jesus. Gary was able to encourage him to be strong in the Lord and not give up. The young men were also being taught how to do masonry and welding. Hopefully this will help them to have a marketable skill.

We have attracted a large group of children who love the interaction with us “mazungus”. Denise had quite the group teaching them the “Cupid Shuffle”, and Gary chasing them up and down the dirt road. They absolutely to have a “photo” taken of themselves and of course want to see it right away with squeals of delight.

In the afternoon we had a great group of women come to study and discuss how we can all grow in our faith. Tina took a pot with dirt and a seed and had two ladies talk about why the seed had not grown after a period of time. They realized it had not be fertilized or watered, and how this is true with our spiritual lives and the need for growth in the areas of Bible Study, Prayer, Witnessing, and Fellowship. We then talked about taking care of the bodies God has given us by healthy eating and excercise. There was much laughter as we ended with Brenda teaching them some excercises they could do, including lifting babies as their weights. The grand finale was Denise having all the women line up and taught them “The Cupid Shuffle”. What a great time they had, and were excited to come back tomorrow and do it again!

We can see the fruit of the return trips as relationships are definitely growing stronger each day with even cultural barriers being torn down. Great example of being One in Christ. A very special relationship has been formed between Tina and Jay as they have gotten to know their sweet little girl they sponsor at Grace Christian School. Sarah is her name and she smiles everytime she see’s them. Sarah has shown us how she has a servant heart as she stands next to the water stand at lunch to hold all the childrens plates and cups while they wash their hands. Her teacher told us she has taken this upon herself to do each day and was never asked to do this. What a special girl!

Our diets have changed a bit with new items offered such as catepillars and fish heads! Gary and Denise were the brave ones chomping on the catepillars and Jay joined them with the fish. All were enjoying the fish until Gary down on slurped down an eyeball! Then we all had a good laugh at his reaction. Pretty sure God got a good chuckle from this too.

Zambia March 2013 Days 1-4

Friday March 8, 2013

Our team of six; Jay & Tina Schaumberg, Bryce Eaton, Denise Strueh, and Brenda  & Gary Hessel, left Indianapolis starting the long journey back to Zambia to work along side Pastor Patson Sakala in his ministry Grace Christian School and Christian Hope Ministry.  After traveling through Amsterdam, then Zimbabwe we finally arrived in Lukasa Zambia about 26 hours later with all luggage in tow!  Our transportation was not at the airport because there bus had broken down, however the driver came in his own  SUV.  We were very grateful hea had a luggage rack to accommodate all the bags and then squeeze all 6 of us.   The time at the airport waiting was well spent as we met a family who are missionaries here in Zambia and are from Bloomington!  The gentleman approached Gary because he was wearing an IU sweatshirt (of course).  After talking with them, we also found out he knows Brenda’s boss and has preached in his church.  Small world in God’s family!   After arriving at the Muzala Lodge after 1:00 AM we went  right to bed and crashed.

Sunday March 10, 2013

After a short night of sleep, we were very excited to head into the compound of  Ng’ombe and meet up with Patson and his wife Patricia to attend worship with the members of Christian Hope Church.  This is always a highlight of the trip.  A service filled with passion and excitement.  “God is good, all the time God is good”  is repeated throughout the service.  This can be very humbling for us coming from America.  The service is held in a room approximately 18×20 cement room , no air conditiong, and no running water.    We were all asked to stand and introduce ourselves and give a greeting.  Jay preached a great message on fear.  We were treated to songs performed by the women of the church and then the precious children.  The service ended with a special treat for us.   We were asked to come to the front where we were given gifts as a token of their appreciation for us coming to serve them.  The ladies gave us a traditional Africa skirt with the Zambia flag and the men were given Zambian soccer (futbol) shirts.  What a great blessing they are to us!

We ended the day by enjoying a little bartering at the local merchandise market where we bought some African souveniers.

Monday March 11, 2013

The first day of work started with a 30 minute walk through the compound where we are greeted by throngs of children yelling “mazungus”  (white people)  The job accomplished today was crude cement mixed by hand and poured the footers  for the 8 foot wall to be built around the school and church property for safety.  Bryce made measurements and drawings to construct and weld a gate for the wall.   A lot of hard work was given by our team  along with some of Patson’s sons and men from the community.

The women of the community were invited to come and participate in a women’s Bible Study with Tina, Brenda and Denise.  Approximately 28 women came and were very engaged as we shared lessons on the attributes of  God and what Good Health means spiritually, physically and relationally. They became comfortable with the format of small group discussion and then sharing in the larger group.   We are excited to continue tomorrow and see their warm smiling faces again!

Saturday in Zambia

Today was a spectacular day of visiting the Chobe National Park.  The team left early this morning for a day of adventure, starting with a ferry ride across the Zambezi  River into Zimbabwe and then into Botswana.  Our morning featured  a river cruise which allowed us to see a vast array of birds, elephants, hippos, and a crocodile.  Several elephant families came down to the water, and it was just like family day at the pool, with splashing and playing around.  They were aware of our presence, but didn’t seem to mind at all.
The afternoon featured a driving safari which allowed us to see more birds, monitor lizards, a couple of species of impala, water buffalo, giraffes, lots more elephants and hippos, and a mongoose family.  We had to laugh at the creativity of God when we looked at the elephants.  Who would have ‘thunk of a trunk?!!   Patson and Patricia were able to accompany us on the trip as well, and we all saw a number of “first-times” today.  We love spending time with them.

We fly home tomorrow from Livingstone, so are busy packing bags and getting things ready.  We so appreciate the prayers of those of you back home, it is a reminder to us of the team behind the team. We look forward to seeing all of you very soon!

Friday in Zambia

Today the entire team including Patson and Patricia made an excursion from Lusaka to Livingstone to see one of the 7 wonders, Victoria Falls.

It indeed was a wonder, spectacular, awesome, and incredible, but why shouldn’t it be, considering its creator. We also had a “babboon encounter”, as a couple dozen of them came walking down the trail, families with babies on their backs, grandmas and granddads too. They just walked by us on the trail as if they were tourists not interested in us at all. We tried to act likewise, but I think we failed.

The mist from the falls, combined with the rainstorm that popped up created the first “white out” rainstorm we have ever seen. The wind blew our ponchos up over our heads, and we all had a second shower fof the day. Simply spectacular.

Tomorrow we plan to go on a day safari, and had our briefing tonight on how not to be animal food!

Thursday in Zambia

We had a great day today in Zambia.  The formal CHE vision seminar finished yesterday, but today Brenda, Linda, Stephanie, and Tina hosted 30 women for an all-day seminar.  There was much enthusiasm, singing, teaching, discussion, and praise.   They did lessons on marriage, nutrition, and discipleship with the ladies participating in role playing and skits to reinforce the messages.  They gobbled up every word, writing it all down in their notebooks.  They are very eager to learn, and  were so appreciative with what we had to offer.
The materials we bought yesterday were put to use, as Gary, Jay, and Vince assisted Patson in a concrete project, laying concrete on all of the front surfaces and steps of the school/residence.  The warm African sun cooked us to medium-rare!  Afterwards Gary and Vince taught the children the finer points of Ultimate Frisbee, American Baseball, and American Football.  They didn’t quite understand the concept of fumbles, forward passing behind the line of scrimmage, forward laterals, etc.  I guess it is a bit complex, as in their “football”, all they have to worry about is “offsides”.  At the end of the day, there was a real, live, backyard football game, and everyone came out a “WEEE-NER”!
Vince and Jay met with Patson and some of his board of directors this afternoon to learn more about the ministry and the vision they have for development.   With the help of supporters, Patson has been able to purchase a property across the street, and has dreams of building a larger schoolhouse and expanding to offer an education to more of the community’s children.  He is a selfless man of great faith and love, and we are honored to partner with him.
We will be heading down to Livingstone tomorrow morning at 5 AM, so made our last trek across the famous “bridge”.  4 years ago during Pastor Aaron’s visit, the bridge was made up of 3 car doors lashed together.  As you can see by the picture, it just isn’t what it used to be, as now it is a series of logs and sticks  lashed together, with various pieces of old car sheet metal here and there.  (MUCH less stable than 3 car doors!)  We are thankful that nobody fell off or lost a toe.  The local children run across it bare-footed, and found our lady’s apprehension to cross it quite comical.
As the team prepares for our trip tomorrow, the ladies are busy packing, and the men are dutifully taking one for the team by watching the NCAA tournament.  Maybe we’ll even see IU play!