Giving And Receiving

Posted by Roger Cooke on Mon, 31 Jul 2017 | 0 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to Post this to Facebook

Friday 28th July

This Zambian experience continues to provide fresh opportunities for learning, insight, growth and dependence on Almighty God. The past two days (Wednesday and Thursday) have been packed, full-on, busy 12+ hour days, but I wouldn’t have changed a thing. Today (Friday) has been a real blessing, with time to relax, reflect and process. Keith and Lyn have been so kind and generous in their hospitality and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the benefit of their love and wisdom.

I spent the last couple of days with two young Zambian Anglican priests named Crossberry and Godfrey as well as with some of the experienced and committed lay leaders (elders) in their respective parishes. These lay leaders are a special type who really look out for their young priests, and I also felt very safe in their company as we moved about the community.

Wednesday saw me attend two home communions with Crossberry. The two elderly ladies we visited are being cared for by family members in challenging situations and their conditions prevent them from attending their parish church of St Paul’s (the first Anglican Church in Kitwe). It was a wonderful privilege for me to join with these two beautifully humble elderly ladies in the Eucharist – occasions I shall never forget.

At the end of the second home communion service the elderly lady unwrapped a handkerchief and from it made two offerings – (i) to support the Diocese of Northern Zambia, and (ii) a harvest offering to St Paul’s. I was then completely taken aback when this most gracious lady handed me 10 Kwacha (c £1) to buy myself a cola drink.

This lady made her loving sacrificial gesture to a stranger in her midst whilst sitting on the stone floor of her home coping with arthritis in her hip. What a challenge this presents to me and to all of us in our giving and receiving and hospitality in the name of our saviour Christ…?

I’ve spoken to a number of MU groups including BB, GB, MAF, St Veronica’s Guild and attended and spoke at a lively bible study in St Mary the Virgin Anglican Church on Thursday evening. I have conveyed the greetings and prayers of the CoI, CITI, CMSI and my own home parish of St George’s. I have sought by the grace of God to be encouraging at every opportunity and I in turn have been greatly encouraged by the work and witness of our Zambian Anglican brothers and sisters.

In often challenging situations these remarkable people maintain a cheerful disposition – proving true the words carried in Proverbs 17:22 – ‘A cheerful heart is good medicine’.

Thank you for the love, encouragement and prayers for my wife and family at home in Northern Ireland and also for me in Zambia – keep up the good work. I head off to Fwila Mission Station with Bishop Derek Kamukwamba early on Saturday morning for about six days. It is a remote location well into the bush – so I’m unlikely to have any internet connection during this time.

Take care and God Bless.

William Jeffrey

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