As I sit here today I can’t help but think of all the days spent dreaming of being right where I am, in this moment. We are birthing a new baby church, growing a team of incredible friends, enjoying our beautiful city and reveling in His goodness and His perfect timing day in and day out.
It’s a bit shocking to us the opportunities God has afforded us in our short time here. We have met and disciple many future leaders of not only South Africa but the nations of Africa. We have been afforded the privilege to utilize Jason’s education as a lawyer to combat sex-trafficking through consulting on cases, raising awareness at the university and joining brave men & women who fight on behalf of the oppressed day in & day out.
My favorite story though is one I will never forget and the purpose of this post. This story is one worth sharing over and over again.
One day standing in the kitchen, a teammate & roommate, Carmen, received a text message from a young woman in our college Lifegroup. She had found herself in a situation she had no idea how to handle or escape. She felt as though there was only one way out. She informed Carmen of her pregnancy and her decision to terminate it. Having very little time to prepare for what we would say or do in response we called upon the masses to PRAY! We went to speak with the timid and fragile girl. In her presence I quickly saw everything she was made to be, the power and influence that a life submitted to Jesus could result in and the humility to win the hearts of men & women worldwide. I suddenly was full of faith for this young woman’s life. How do you tell a 19 year old that her pregnancy is a gift in the face of family rejection, society scorn and friendly judgment? It will, in no small way, change the course of her entire life. Yet, there I was, having only met her once before, begging for the life of her baby. I had decided many years ago that people’s decisions could not dictate my ability to LOVE. So, that being said, at the end of the day, no matter what she decided to do I would love. However, far be it from me (and Carmen!) to let the opportunity pass where we did not literally beg for her baby’s life. She adamantly told me she had made her decision. I squealed and squawked for her to “CHANGE HER MIND!” -- to no avail. Our conversation ended with a termination appointment looming in 12 hours, so we prayed for the TANGIBLE presence of Jesus Himself to fill her room, speak to her, love her, whisper His protection over her, give her revelation of His unchanging, unmoving love for her and His Promise to take care of her baby no matter what!
“Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.” –Ephesians 3:20-21
We came home and prayed more, wept some and awoke to the news that our friend had encountered something during the night that only the Bible describes so plainly. God had moved on her behalf and restored her to Himself. She was indeed going to keep her baby. In her words, “Who am I to tell God that I know any better than him?” There was a radical and quick obedience despite the impending scorn. She looked at the cost and said to her child, “You are worth it.”
“For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future.” –Jeremiah 29:11
Her name is Zintle. (Zin-slay) Her name means, “They are beautiful.”
(Oo-yuh-tahn-dwuh) this is entertaining because I have no idea how to phonetically spell anything!)
|He came out as a worshiper! VICTORY! (March 2, 2015)|
A tiny miracle weighing in as a 5.5lb heavyweight.
“See I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” –Isaiah 43:19
There have been many questions and concerns. How long will he be with us? Most likely Uya will be with us for a couple of months until he goes to live with extended family who are eagerly awaiting their opportunity to love on him! After much prayer we have decided that the future heartache doesn’t dictate our behavior. We risk love because he’s worth it. We risk separation from a boy we will love as our own because LOVE enters into every situation, it rushes in unhindered, always willing, no matter the outcome. If I weighed every decision based on my controlled and calculated assessment of the heartache and risk ahead I wouldn’t truly live. My only stance, my only choice can be love because of what Jesus Christ has done for me.
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” –Romans 8:28
Please be praying for us as we journey into the unknown. We love this baby boy. We love his mama. We are humbled by God’s willingness to entrust us with his precious life for whatever amount of time he will be with us. However, let’s be real, I often make Zintle promise me that even when he’s sixteen that he can spend the night on occasion. ;)
The generosity of the masses for the sake of the one has always been something that has blown my mind. Thank you friends and family for coming around us financially, emotionally & practically to see this future world-changer born into care, celebration, belief and unshakable love.
On behalf of his beautiful mama, Zintle, and our family, we are forever thankful.
May God receive ALL the glory from this precious life.
May God receive ALL the glory from this precious life.