Juni 2015

 

Hi everyone,

don’t know where the time has gone, it’s almost time to go to Europe again (in june) …
Lots of things have been happening, as always ;-­‐)

The week before and over Easter we were in Zimbabwe again, to quite a few places since it was a 10 day trip. Life in Zim is tough these days; there has been a draught, so there isn’t much of a harvest in the rural areas and in the cities everything is very expensive: there if hardly electricity or water (if there is electricity then usually after midnight, or at least after 11 pm, to about 3 am, so people have to cook then ‘cause there is no firewood or charcoal allowed for sale like in Mozambique; water is usually from about 4.30 to 5.30/6 am; and people still have to be at work at 8 am). So even for us it was a hard trip concerning circumstances, we didn’t sleep much, got soaking wet multiple times, were cold, there was hardly any food … but many lives were touched, people got saved, healed, delivered … and that’s what matters. Compliments to my team, they had a great attitude despite of all things … .
The last 3 days we went to a conference in the area of Chipinge high high up in the mountains, driving uphill for about 2 hours. At some point we stopped ‘cause everyone needed to go to the ‘bathroom’, which was a mistake, but who could know that the car wouldn’t start again? The ‘road’ was small, so there was no way to turn around the car to push-­‐start it downhill; pushing uphill was impossible; so the only option was reverse gear downhill. I said to PAPA, ‘this is with you’; the team pushed me a bit and thank God on the 2 nd try it started! What we did was dangerous ‘cause when the engine is off it’s hard to break and the road was not straight, but there really wasn’t another option. There are always new experiences in life … :-).

At the end of april we had another baptism in the prison (47 prisoners), celebrating their new lives with & for Jesus :-).
After they finished 1 month of 24/7 prayer they decided on their own to add 7 days (a
week) of fasting & prayer … wow … and said they’ll continue with 24/7 prayer next month …
The favor we have in the prison with the officials still amazes me … a few weeks ago our responsible pastor inside the prison was called by the new commander who told him they’ll increase the number of people allowed to participate in our services ‘cause our teachings are changing people’s lives … and they’ve kept their word, there are about twice as many people allowed in our weekly services now … .
The bible studies I’m doing there on Thursday afternoons are going really well, too. Those that participate have to commit for 2 years and they’re the real hungry ones … it’s a joy to teach them … :-)-­‐

We managed to renew our permission to pray in the hospital paper and are pressing in for the kingdom to come & manifest there as it is manifesting in the prison these days … .

Unfortunately from what I know the legalization of Loving the Nations hasn’t moved forward much, but I managed to inform social welfare about what we are doing and God even gave me an opportunity to speak to the director there which is usually quite difficult.

I’m grateful that most of the street children that came to live with us are still there and there lives are changed forever. If you hear them praying you’d think they’ve been praying for the last 5 years, but they’ve only been with us for less than 4 months. Please keep them & those taking care of them in prayer. There have been and still are many battles and once again at this present moment it looks like the enemy is trying to
discourage the guys staying there with them, wanting to side-­‐track them, but he won’t manage -­‐ in Jesus’ name!!
Join me in praying for more laborers for the harvest (in every area) … . The kids have school holidays this week, so we used the opportunity to take all the kids (Iris & Loving the Nations) to ‘Casa M’sica’ again … what a fun day … swimming in the pool again, seeing animals (this time one of the giraffes showed up with her baby as we were walking in the beautiful nature out there), a mountain of rice & meat for lunch …
:-).

Discipleship group …
is almost finished (only 2 Sundays left) … everyone is insisting we need to continue and I think so, too … at least until the end of the year … then we’ll decide again …

Last weekend we were in Macossa and Guro, which is in the north of the province I’m staying in. It was by faith I went ‘cause I couldn’t find time to fix on the car what I wanted to be fixed before. Anyways, God has been faithful as always, he brought us there & back safely. We showed the Jesus film in Macossa on Friday night; the people from the church there had prepared things well, so there was a big crowd and to everyone’s
surprise they allowed us a central place in town where there is a stage and places to sit which they usually only allow the president or other high up government officials to use; anyone else has to go to the soccer field a bit out of town which is just a grass strip with nothing.
On Saturday I was teaching a seminar for pastors & leaders from different churches, whoever was interested. ‘The truth will set you free …’ is what I saw once again … . On Sunday, after ministering in one of the churches we went to Guro to do evangelism there that night. The police was nice to us, despite of the short notice, us just showing up. As we arrived at the soccer field it looked like the whole town had gathered to watch the teams playing, so it was easy to spread the message. There were so many people gathered that night, I have no idea how many – and the MP3 for first time ever just wouldn’t work, so we couldn’t show the film – crazy! There was nothing we could do, so after trying (with praying) for a long time, we just worshiped with the keyboard and I was preaching spontaneously. The amazing thing was that the crowd was with me in a way I have rarely seen and hundreds of people gave their lives to Jesus – even without showing the film – we just prayed for people. A new church was born. Yes, we must be flexible and just do what we can … .
Some days things are a bit backwards … we had Xima (dry grits) and goat meat for breakfast (with lots of oil), nothing for lunch, and cookies & peanuts for dinner (‘cause there wasn’t anything else). Also, that night I had a bit of a challenge … when I laid down to sleep in the ‘church’ we asked permission to sleep in there … within minutes thousands of ants were on my mat, in my sleeping bag, even in my clothes … after
kicking most of them off I decided to try sleeping on the benches, even though they are small and not very stable … that way I managed to sleep at least a few hours … until I woke up again, covered in ants, in my face, hair, everywhere … it really wasn’t funny … I’ve been sleeping with ants before but that amount out passed all my other experiences … at 5 am, even though it was quite cold, I got up ‘voluntarily’ … so at least we were back home early enough to get all the things done we needed to get done that day … everything has it’s advantages … ;‐)

Every blessing & greetings from Mozambique,
Claudia

März / April 2015

My dear friends,
I know I know, this letter to you is overdue for a long long time … sorry! Let me share some things with you that happened lately…

Last week we went to Quelimane in Zambesia province for evangelism, preaching, teaching and to encourage the church there. The pastor is a young guy whom I’ve known for a number of years. He lived here in Chimoio as he was training to become a nurse. When he was transferred I encouraged him to use the opportunity to share Jesus with the people there. He did and people gave their lives to jesus in a place dominated by moslems and some catholics. For years he asked me to come & visit the church he planted. This past week God put it in my heart to answer his request so we went there. It is far & the road is bad bad bad. It is a tar road but there isn’t a whole lot of tar left and it’s tiring to drive 11hours on a road on which you constantly have to decide which side of the road is better, which pothole is less deep, having to choose between bad worse and the worst. Anyways it was worth the effort. We saw the kingdom of God coming to the people, as we showed the Jesus film (after overcoming some obstacles due to witchcraft), preaching, praying for them, teaching at the church … many were saved, healed, delivered … glory honor and praise be to Jesus, who was and is and is to come!

In the prison … We’re continuing to have amazing favor there … The prison director even gave us seed for ‘cove staca’, which we’ve been wanting to plant at the new property, but you can’t buy it anywhere; it’s the green vegetable people eat here with xima (dry grits) which just keeps on producing leaves all year around. Lately more and more officials are asking for prayer from us and are getting healed. Even those that come to our services regulariy are hardly sick anymore. On a Tuesday a few weeks ago as we were waiting for the prison guards to open the cells so the prisoners could attend our service the Holy Spirit prompted me to share with our inside pastor there about the prison in Argentina I once visited where they were praying 24 hours a day and the transformation there as a result of that. So on march 1 st they started 1 month of 24/7 prayer there and I believe the shift in the atmosphere has already started! I am looking forward to the answers to their prayers …

In the hospital… still going & we’re pressing in for a breakthrough, more miracles, actually see the hospital empty …

The discipleship group for young leaders at ‘my house’ is going well … they’re gaining a greater and greater understanding of life in the kingdom, christlikeness, the truth setting them free, godly leadership, are more & more passionate about Jesus …

We’ve also been back to Zimbabwe, to help one of the pastors to open a new church, train pastors & leaders … it was a blessed time … they asked us to come back … we’ll see … as the Spirit leads …

The street children, at the new property … On a Wednesday morning in January I’m receiving a text message on my phone from one of the guys staying at the new property to prepare things for the children to move in saying “the children are here”, I answered ”what do you mean here, where?” “Here in Augustinho Neto “ was his answer. “What?!?! I called him and he explained the kids just showed up there telling him “we’ll stay here now”. They walked 15km on foot without shoes to get there. What to do? One of my mosambican friends was already cooking food for them ‘cause it was Wednesday (the day of the week we feed them a hot meal), so we decided to have lunch there. After talking with them we decided to take those back into town that have some kind of relative in Chimoio that could worry about them, the others (who have been on the street for years) we allowed to stay. On their day of arrival there was nothing there, just an empty house, with cement floors, but I guess anything is better than sleeping on the street where they get beaten, chased and taken away even the little they have about every night. Them moving in before we were ready got us even busier than we already were, I was buying things into town like mats, sheets, moskitonets, blankets, clothes, pots & pans, spoons, cups, plats, bowls, buckets, soap, food for 3 meals a day and and and … cause these children had absolutely nothing except some filthy rags on them. All of this was happening while we were still putting on windows, building the 2 nd house, the machessa, a temporary bathroom/toilet/shower mosambican style … .
Now they’re all eating well, showering regularly, have clean clothes (actually look like people), enjoy playing soccer … and what is really important we managed to get them all into the local school (which was quite a battle since they have no documents whatsoever). It is nice to see them living a normal life, getting up in the morning, praying, doing some chores, showering, having breakfast, getting ready for school… .
The 2 nd house better gets finished soon cause we need more space … .
As far as the paperwork for Loving the Nations is concerned we’re still waiting … if you could keep praying with us would be greatly appreciated … In my last letter I wrote that I believed God wanted us to also help some orphan children of the suburb that wouldn’t be able to go to school otherwise. We first offered to sponsor 10, but grandmothers just kept coming to us crying to please help them, too, so we made a waiting list and in the end were paying the school fees, school material … for 25 children (besides our own)!!
Last week I went into a new store to buy a bag of rice for the kids, but they didn’t have the kind I used to buy. Someone approached me trying to convince me that another kind was good, too. I was kinda hesitant though mainly because it was more expensive than the one I’d have liked. As we were talking I mentioned the rice was for the children. He asked where they were, how many … and I explained. Then he asked again which of the kinds of rice I wanted. I didn’t really want any of them but somehow I heard myself saying ‘if any that kind’ (I pointed to the 25kg bag). He asked again if the rice was for the children, so I said ‘yes’, still not interested in buying any there. Then he said ‘ let me buy the rice for the children’. I was surprised but he was serious, asking the owner of the shop to get me a bag and paid. So I left the store with a bag of rice that someone bought whom I’ve never met before … God provides in different ways … 🙂
God is good all the time! Greetings from Mosambik, Claudia

Januar 2015

 My dear friends,

 
I hope you had a great Christmas, celebrating the birth of our Lord & Savior Jesus Christ.
 
I was at our center celebrating with the children and we definitely had fun J. In the morning we talked about what Christmas is about and why we give each other presents. Then had spaghetti (which is special here) with ground beef, fried chicken, salad & softdrinks for lunch and for the first time in their lifetime they had icecream for dessert (what a treat J). With everyone’s stomachs being more than full the time had come to open the presents. Our children are very fortunate ‘cause here in Mosambik it is not common that children get presents, not even for Christmas … so they know they are blessed & loved a lot …
 
As always a lot of things have happened since I last wrote you … let me share some with you …
 
In November I had a visitor from Germany and after I finished teaching the seminar (on how do you know what God has called you to do) in Manica I took her to ‘Casa Messica’ from where you have a beautiful view over the river & lake there. As we were having dinner the owner (who knows me) came by to say hi and as always shared a few struggles they’ve been having there; then he says, “…come back for Christmas”, so I said that I’ll be busy with the children then. “Bring them here!”. I didn’t respond ‘cause I knew how expensive it is to eat there.  Then he asked how many there were, so I said 15 from the center and 15 that are still living on the street. “Bring them all here” he said again, “I treat them for a meal”. Now things were getting interesting. To make a long story  short he was really serious and I went there on December 18th with all the kids and some other adults to help, and not only for a meal, but for lunch & dinner, a guided walk to see the animals, swim in the pool, spending the night and a delicious breakfast – what a treat! As we were having dinner someone who had come for the candle light dinner & Christmas carols etc they had announced for the night we were there asked if he could buy softdrinks for all the kids … sure … so not even that was missing 😉 … . Now imagine these children have never eaten in a restaurant before, never swam in a pool and never slept in a hotel… . Everyone is still talking about it & we’re invited to come back … 😉
And not only that they invited publicly for a candle light dinner, Christmas carols etc and gave our children an opportunity to sing there. Originally the owner had said to me they’ll use the money they’ll raise by selling the candles to at least pay the people cleaning the rooms with it (which would have been fine), but then he decided to give me the money to buy whatever I wanted to buy for the kids (that’s were the Christmas chickens & icecream came from by the way), so we even left with an offering there … .  God, you amaze me …
 
At the new property
The 1st house is as good as finished (just doors & windows are missing), building the “bathroom/shower-house” now, started with the 2nd house and are building a big machessa –  african style with the thatch roof, so a lot of work – ALL at the same time … it’s kinda insane, but we need it all at the same time, so it has to work somehow. We’re hoping (pray with us) that the first kids can move in within the first 2 weeks of January ‘cause then school starts and I really want to see them in school this year, not missing another year!  I don’t know how we’ll pay for all of them to eat there every day (it won’t be just one meal a week then like it is now, but 3 meals a day), plus all the other things they’ll need, so this a faith project, but those are the Father’s kids, so He’ll just have to take care of them and He will I believe, He’s faithful at all times … .
Besides that I promised the leader of that suburb that we’ll sponsor 10 children from that suburb that haven’t been in school this last year ‘cause they couldn’t afford school uniforms, school material etc. I believe this is what Jesus is asking me to do, so we’re committed, living by faith not by sight, as usual.
 
In the prison
had another baptism in November – it was a joy to hear their testimonies and see their faces shining as they came out of the water …
on december 23rd we did a Christmas service there … I had asked for 500 people to participate, which I thought was a lot already … but as I was talking to the director he asked if we couldn’t do with the whole prison which means 800 some people … sure … it was amazing amazing amazing, what a grace, ALL the prisoners gathered in one place hearing the gospel & about the coming of Jesus, who He is, even all the muslims were present, and many many gave their lives to Jesus for the first time.  Then we gave them all bread & juice (which is a common ‘snack’ here) …
 
All these things are happening in the midst of lots of difficulties, persecution, hardly any water at my house (only every 3 days average at the moment and then only for a short time), spending lots of time in vain trying to fix things on my car and it’s still not repaired, my oldest dog (the one I had first) died … anyways Jesus didn’t promise us life ‘d be easy, but that He’d be with us and we’d overcome …
 
In the hospital
still going … lots of things Jesus is asking us to do are about faithfulness … the team has some new members which I am really excited about – an answer to prayer J!
 
The youth service
also still every first Sunday afternoon of each month and every single time very special. I’m proud of ‘my’ team, they’re heroes!
Last Sunday afternoon we had a regular team meeting at ‘my’ house, but were also discussing whether we should continue; it’s the end of the year now, beginning of a new year, so a good time for feedback. Everyone “voted” for continuing.  There are many churches here, but everyone is doing their own thing and when there are youth gathering it’s basically just singing, not even really worship, hardly any prayer and no message (teaching). What I have seen is that those that ‘ve come regularly have become strong in Christ and they’re influencing the other youths in their churches towards Jesus … 😉
 
According to a vision God showed me I started a discipleship group for young leaders at ‘my house’, 15 people, every other Sunday at 6pm for 6 months; Jesus even gave me a complete list of the topics He wants me to teach them and I believe He handpicked those that are participating. I’ve done 3 so far and there has been an incredible depth of teaching & revelation & sharing hearts & praying together. This is the army to ‘take the city’ … .
 
Pastors & leaders training for the Partners in harvest churches here in Manica has also started, once a month, every first Saturday. I was surprised how many came, hungry to learn and it was great to hear them sharing what touched their hearts at the end of the day …
 
Maybe let me share one more opportunity with you that the Lord has given me lately … there is a church here in Chimoio called ‘Embaxada’ (which means embassy), probably the fasted growing church here at the moment (started 3 years ago)… I went to a Wednesday night service (so during the week) and there were more than 1000 people gathered … one of my team members is good friends with the leader and he had told him many things about me … so as we showed up the leader called us to talk to him afterwards … we had a short conversation and even though I was quite discouraged during that time & could have used some encouragement myself, the Holy Spirit gave me words to encourage him and within minutes he decided that I was the first person from the outside he allowed to be apart of their staff training (which is 150 people), not because I’m white (many white people have shown up there), but because of my humility & a different attitude than other people that used to show up there and because I was carrying something they needed (that’s what he said). That is definitely a privilege & a great honor I wasn’t expecting at all. So last Friday I was invited to come & share & I did … we started at 4 pm and finished at 10 pm, nothing is short there … 😉
 
A quick note on a practical miracle that happened last week … I had to go to the car inspection last Friday … but the ‘check engine light’ was on, just couldn’t find time to alignment inbetween taking the kids to Messica, organizing Christmas presents and the missionary Christmas celebration (which I was also responsible for)… so in the end I decided God ‘d just have to take care of it, I can’t wait with all this police now on the road during Christmas season … . Somehow the guy who took my car through the inspection, over the different machines didn’t see the engine check light and the off alignment didn’t show …  the lights were all working, but not the windscreen wipers – to my surprise/shock – I didn’t know, I had just repaired them, but he let me get away with it … it was actually the first time ever of all these times I’ve taken cars through the inspection that absolutely no complains showed up on the paper that came out of computer … that I’d count a miracle & I’d like to say thank  you God …
 
Greetings from Mosambik & a blessed new year.
Claudia