Before preaching at the pastors conference last night [pictured above], I spoke at the first day of the Saba Saba Festival. We had around 2500 people at the festival. This was a pretty good crowd for the first day (I've been told), and today the crowds will easily double. By Saturday we are expecting close to 25,000.
When I arrived in Saba Saba the churches there had gathered to march through the town in a parade to welcome all the people to the festival. This was the highlight of my day. As the churches were marching down the street, Wesley Paul, Tommy Hayes (another minister) and I joined the parade at the halfway point, and when the children saw our faces (which they had seen for months on posters and banners around the city) they surrounded us like we were famous movie stars!
We were overwhelmed as they would stare at us and smile as to say, "we have been waiting for you to arrive." I am hoping someone was taking pictures of this because it was so moving to march together with the church and with the children through the streets of Saba Saba shouting "Jesus" and singing in Cucuo (which is an African dialect). By the end of the night I was wasted, but there is nothing like being spent for Jesus.
My dress shoes that I brought have an orange tint to them from all the red clay that have gotten on them. Every night when I finish the day, I wipe them down and thank the Lord for shoes to wear ... and for the privilege of carrying the gospel in them. "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!” - Romans 10:15
[Imagine picture of orange-earth-dust-covered dress shoes here; and forgive my husband -- he's not an experienced blogger so it doesn't occur to him to take pictures of dusty shoes for amazing blog posts from Africa.]
Meanwhile, back in America, I miss him so much. The first time he left me to go on a ministry trip, I cried every day into the phone for his aching ears to know my misery. I'm not so bad anymore, but I do still miss him, especially after we hit the six or seven day mark. Today makes nine!
It's become our tradition when he's out of the country on God's missions that I send him a love song. It began on Facebook, but I've moved the tradition here. I fear I may show my age, but here goes nothing.
To Africa — Because a half a world is too far away, where my nights are your days.Follow God and the gospel in those dusty shoes all over the globe if you must, just let them lead you back home to me when you're through. I'm anxiously awaiting.