Wallingford Christian Assembly

Zambia News - A New Home (February 2017)

I am sitting cosily at home tonight listening to the patter of the rain on the roof.  It seems a long time since I left UK on the evening of 16 January. I spent a few days in Lusaka, staying with good friends, Jason and Anna Speichinger, and doing shopping ready for up country.  I was able to get to the meetings at the Great East Road assembly where Howard Barnes was giving helpful ministry.  He and Pauline were out in Lusaka in January.  I arrived at Chit on Friday 20th  and was soon settling in once again.

I have a new ‘home’ here, the Garden-side of the Duplex, the equivalent of an English semi, and this will be my more permanent abode during my future stays at Chit, in the will of the Lord.  It is nice to have my own little pad and be able to arrange it as I like.  I spent some time cleaning and sorting and am now well up to speed.   I decided to purchase a new oven, and am also hoping to get a new and larger dining table made from local wood (very solid and with beautiful grain).   As it is half of a duplex it means that I frequently have new neighbours. At the moment, the mother and sister of the Chit pilot, Chris Brundage, are here from Thunder Bay until the end of the month.  Chris’s sister has brought her (unsaved) friend with her; both are nurses. We are praying that the Lord will work in Sarah’s life and that she will trust the Saviour. When they go, Peter and Cathy Norris arrive from Canada. Peter is an optometrist so we will have a lot of patients wanting glasses over the next few weeks.

Left to Right:  Lucy and Kaitlin Brundage, Sarah

The hospital was rather quieter when I first arrived back, but it is becoming increasingly busy over the past couple of weeks with more emergency surgery cases to keep Dr McAdam happy.   It is the rainy season and the rains are exceptionally good this year (I am very glad of my wellington boots for the daily trips to and from the hospital).  Folk are busy in their fields attending to crops and thus ensuring a supply of food for later in the year.  Food takes priority over any aches and pains!  At the end of last week, it rained steadily for more than 12 hours – I began to think that the visiting well-drillers should turn their energy to building an ark instead.

At the beginning of February we enjoyed a visit from Andrew Ussher from the Langstaff assembly, Toronto, Canada.  He was staying with Shawn and Rhonda Markle;  Langstaff is their commending assembly.  His ministry from 1 Peter 5 v 7 on the Lord’s Day morning was very refreshing and later in the day he preached the Gospel faithfully, both in the village and also in the English Gospel meeting in the early evening.  His visit was all too short!.  The picture below was taken after the village Gospel meeting. Left to right: John Mazaza, Boston Mbilikita, Andrew Ussher, Chamwanga Chambula, Shawn Markle, John Chilanda.

We have been very encouraged with the news that 4 of the girls in the hostel which Keith and Gayle Bailey oversee have asked for baptism.  A couple of weeks ago I went over to the dorm and met with them. We spent a little time thinking about what the Scriptures taught about baptism, why they wanted to be baptised and what baptism means – very important when many folk believe in baptismal regeneration, so far from the truth of Scripture. The baptism took place last Lord’s day in the swimming pool (safer than the river, no risk of crocodiles). It was a joy to hear each of them confess their faith in the Lord Jesus.  

This is the season of visitors at Chit.  At the moment we have well drillers and maintenance folk, with an ‘electrical’ team from Canada arriving next week DV.  We have had 5 brethren from NI visiting over the past 2 weeks.  Their main purpose was to work on the house which Julie-Rachel-Elwood is building for herself.   They were also a good help in the assembly meetings.  The Tuesday evening English Bible study was approaching an NI Bible reading!!   at the moment – so some of them were responsible for all the meetings today.

I have been out to the village to visit Eddie each Saturday apart from the day after I arrived when unpacking was the order of the day.  He loves to come to the meetings on the Lords Day but cannot always find a ‘driver’ as he calls whoever pushes his wheelchair to the hall.  Whenever I visit, he always asks what I have been reading, so there is the opportunity to share something from the Scriptures, usually with a Gospel emphasis. He clearly enjoys these times.  His new chair is very good for him and provides him with much  better postural support.

I continue to help Rhonda Markle on a Thursday evening when we visit the ladies’ and maternity wards with the Gospel. Folk listen well and willingly receive tracts. It is our prayer that they will find the Saviour of Whom we speak. I took up Acts 4 v 12 – Neither is there salvation in any other for there is none other name under heaven, given among men whereby we must be saved.

Kait Speichinger asked me if I would help with a small group Bible study for a few of the sisters.  After some prayer, I agreed, though hope that I will be able to take more of a supporting role rather than leading each week.  Kait is away in Lusaka at the moment, but we had our first study last week, just 3 of us. We are looking at the Epistle to the Romans. Last week we covered introductory ground as well as the first 17 verses of chapter 1, particularly in relation to the Gospel. This week we will look at the latter part of the chapter, working towards chapter 3 and the inevitable conclusion that ‘all have sinned and come short of the glory of God’.

I think this brings you all up to date with life out here. Please do continue to pray for the work and for me in my daily witness and walk with the Lord.