>Fresh Bread

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A friend asked me the other day what my school was like because she thought we sat in a classroom all day and were taught from a curriculum.  This school in Africa is the most amazing mission school.  Our classroom is a very large hut on a hill overlooking the Indian Ocean, with a thatched roof, open all around so we feel the gentle breeze off of the ocean.  The water is the deepest blue and sparkles in the tropical sun.  There are four horses on our base that come and stand with their heads in the hut when we worship!  They are drawn to His Presence.  It is so amazing.

The floors are made of marble because it is cheaper than wood here in Mozambique.  Our chairs and desks are grass mats laid out on the floor, so we can lay out in the Spirit anytime during the class if we want to.  If we are being touched by Jesus we just let Him have His way and give way to Him and our agenda just goes out the window, or the hut.

Yesterday a group of us went to purchase the bamboo poles for the first roof, which your giving has accomplished!  What an amazing adventure.  We bought ten bundles and they are about 12 feet long.  The bundles were heavy and so two people carried each bundle.  We had to go down, down, down the side of steep little hills in many places because of the way this village was built.  The streets were basically narrow alleys in many places.  All along the way we shouted out greetings to the locals in their local Makua language, which we are all learning very quickly in school.  They were amazed to see “acuna’s” (white people) in their village AND speaking their tongue.  Smiles all around.  Kids were following behind and going before us because they all knew where we were headed as we went in last week to check it all out.

We got to the end of the trail and found a couple baking fresh loaves of bread in a large outdoor clay oven.  This is how they have made bread for a few thousand years!!  We bought all our arms could hold, at about .30 cents a loaf!  We had a crowd of children by now and we broke bread and shared hot fresh bread with the little children.  I could so easily envision Jesus multiplying loaves in Mathew.  Everyone had enough!  Then we prayed for a man and he received Jesus as Lord and it was so easy, no laboring, no preaching.  He saw the love and came.  We sang and clapped and chased and played with children all the way back up the hill.

By the way, I have lost 16 pounds, and not on purpose!  There are no Whataburgers here!  Mmmmmmmm Whataburger……….

This weeks nuggets put into action:  So many people are “standing” in faith and God says that we need to lean forward in faith.  Don’t dig in our heals, lean forward.  If we aren’t making progress then lean forward, go further.  What does leaning forward look like?  Take a step in the direction you want to go.

A pastor in Argentina was supported with funding from some U.S. churches.  He had a very small ministry.  God told him to spend six months doing nothing but spending time with Him.  No salvations, no healing, nothing.  His U.S. supporters threatened to stop support.  He kept at it, spending hours a day on his knees before God.  At the end of six months, God told him to have a prayer meeting.  He told God that only three old ladies would show up.  He called the meeting and sure enough, only three old ladies came.  One of the old ladies received a word from the Lord to get up and pound her fist on the communion table.  She did it.  That very night 5,000 people showed up in the village to hear the Word from God.  Revival broke out and is still going on 10 years later.  Don’t minimize what God is doing through you or with you.  He has purpose.  Lean forward in your faith.

Recognize your sonship in God.  If our job or ministry changes tomorrow and we go from preaching to hundreds or thousands to cleaning dirty diapers, our identity shouldn’t be shaken.  Know who you are in the Father.  No longer slaves, but sons, mature sons (Romans 8).  Mature sons see problems as opportunities.  Mature sons feel accepted because of who they are, not what they do or don’t do.  Mature sons rest in their position as sons.  They don’t need recognition and status.  Whether you clean toilets or preach, the pay is the same in the Kingdom.

Keep stopping for the one.  The woman at the well witnessed to the entire village because Jesus “sat” with the one, with her.  He sat down and gave her dignity, even offering to drink out of her unclean cup.  Jesus fed 5,000.  It was a great conference but what did all those people do with it?  We never read about it.  Wonder if they got fed and then went home saying what a great conference that was?  Keep stopping for the one.  Don’t treat them as a project.  No one wants to be a project or a thing to declare as a trophy, “Hey another one saved!  That’s 15 this month!”.  Give them love.  Give them their dignity.  Go slow, go low.  Sit with the one.  Spend time with the one.

Love will take you into the darkest of places.  Love knows who you are and He still wants to be with you.

Each one of us has been captured by God.  God doesn’t need our best.  He needs us to be totally empty of ourselves so He can have room to fill us with Himself.  So, when we pour Him out, we are doing God’s best and not ours.  How much easier that is than trying to do our best.

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