Iris Global's Harvest School of Missions.
Pictures say a thousand words, so here is a slide show of much of what Pemba was; although, even these pictures fall short of all that it was.. partly because I was not as diligent of a photo taker as I could have been. It's that balance of fully experiencing something and intentionally trying to record everything so that you can reflect on it later. So in the end my memories are still mine... it is just a bit harder to express to everybody else.
To attempt to share about this adventure in words is daunting in nature. There are so many aspects to share, encounters that are ineffable daily happenings that are less than amusing to anyone else but me, etc.... All I have to offer is the possibility that through random sharings, you may be able to paint your own picture of what this looks like and possibly even find yourself on a place, embarking on the best adventure of a lifetime to Mozambique.
- Out of the 87 days I was in Mozambique, I only saw water flowing from my sink spicket 17 of those days
- When it comes down to it, with no running water, the latrines may smell better than the bathrooms in our house
- On that note, I mostly found myself brushing my teeth outside
- This was three months in the Presence of God. The only thing on my agenda was "seek God"
- The classes in and of itself discussed various theological topics. The practicum of the school was simple: learn to stop and love the one in front of you - no matter their background or yours. Learn to share Love across cultures.
- Worshiping for hours every day will change you... and make you hungry when you come home and it doesn't happen there
- There are special graces for things there that you may not have when you get back - certain foods, certain expectations, certain abilities to read and devour the Word (you may find this increased or decreased on either side depending on the season)
- The best grocery store in Pemba had inconsistent stock and prices
- I got to see at least 70% of a village that had never heard the Gospel before respond to the Gospel and accept Jesus
- I saw miracles consistently of healings, deliverance, and faithfulness of Jesus that felt like no big deal at any moment because THE Big Deal was all that mattered - Jesus
- I lived in a 20x24 foot house with 11 other girls... and we never fought
- I rode in the back of a truck on the lid of a rice cooking pot and lid for 9 hours of mostly unpaved roads on the way to and from the "bush bush"
- In the bush, we set up a mini-tent city and slept there... The whole village is around your tents when you wake up in the morning
- God gave me a vision for my life while I was there
- In our school of 250-300 students, we represented 42 nations
- One of my roommates is cousins with a friend of mine from college
- One of my other housemates is good friends with my roommate in America's best friend... The world is smaller than I had ever thought
- God gave me a new heart; from one of patchwork to one that is brand new, full of love and life and able to grow without the fear of bursting a seam
- God meets every person from every background, in every language, in every condition and loves each of them the same
- God is not afraid of our messes; He embraces them
- Going to town takes a full afternoon in order to go three miles, shop at the grocery store and purchase phone credits
- The best places to buy produce are at the barrackas
- I would walk 1.5 miles in hopes of getting internet
- When God told me things in Africa, I just believed them because I had no way to "check if they were accurate" based on my research and internet searches. That's a lot more like what faith really is
- The sun would rise at 4:45 am and I would wake up sweating by 6
- Our house taught HS19 how to Wobble
- We threw our own Thanksgiving as a house that still was able to include green bean casserole, cooked chickens, monkey bread, mac and cheese, and mashed potatoes
- I was sick for 7/10 days of 10 day bush bush at the end of school and left with a greater understanding of God's love for me and just how much I can handle
- Christmas was celebrated in the following:
- Christmas Eve we came together with the Iris kids, put on a Christmas play and then ran around during the "candle light portion
blowing each others' candles out and having to go get them re-lit in a rousing game to fast Mozambican music
- I was a part of feeding 5000 kids a meal on Christmas day - in the rain - and see love in action
- That night, we made from scratch brownies and watched Elf as a little family
- Week 10 of school remains inexplicable to others of all the Holy Spirit did in each of the lives of us in House 15, but we did not function as we ever had before and have never experienced unity quite like that with Him and each other outside of that time
- Life will never be the same after Pemba