I just got back at 2 a.m. this morning from a weekend trip with the church to Zimbabwe. It was a really great trip. All we set out to do was gain new relationships with the churches in that area for future work there. We also got to bring a lot of food and seed to bless the people there.
It was my first experience with what I consider “true Africa”. South Africa is technically Africa, but I have pretty much the same things in the US (minus a clothes dryer). The first signs of “true Africa”, came right of the bat. The border crossing was intense. The car I was in was driven by Marc Le Roux, my friend and new hero. He was a champ, as he had to deal with issues and corruption at every stop we faced at the border. He later admitted it was a game to him. I was very nervous and tense. These guys gave him problems just because they wanted a bribe from him. He didn’t back down and went through the border with $0 spent on bribes.
We finally made it to where we were supposed to meet with another group from our church at 4:30 p.m. in Zim. This was 13 hours after we first left. An hour and a half later, a car drove past us carrying people who were leading us to the village where we were going to stay for the weekend. After 24k of dirt road driving, we finally got to a school where the church met. There were about 50-60 people from this church who welcomed us. It was truly a spiritual experience as we looked up and saw the entire sky filled with stars. It was the most amazing thing I had ever seen. The people led us into their church and they immediately started singing a song in their language. It was so beautiful. After a short service, they served us dinner we ate with our hands. They eat pap pretty much every meal. It contains corn and looks like mashed potatoes, but a different consistency. I had a slight difficult time downing the whole thing. After dinner we all hit the sack. I slept on the concrete floor. Not the most comfortable of sleeping times this weekend.
The next day we just hung out with the people of that area. We played hackey sack, soccer, and even showed the kids an egg toss. It was pretty fun. We got to know the people there, and they got to know us. It’s amazing to see them sing, dance, and worship God in their difficult circumstance. It really makes you think about your own life. There is more I can tell you, but you’ll just have to look at my pictures. I am definitely looking for more opportunites to experience the different parts of Africa. Hopefully my stomach will do better with the unique culinary experiences I will encounter.
I posted my pictures on facebook, but flickr isn’t letting me do it right now. Hopefully it will let me later this week.