Category Archives: Reflections
We said goodbye this week to a dear sister, Chilombo Milingu, who passed away on the first of April. She was dearly loved by her many family and friends, and by all the children she touched leading the children’s ministry at Fountain of Life Church and through Africa Enterprise Trust and the Chimwemwe homes. Even greater, though, is the love of Jesus that was the sustaining reality of her life, and now the secure hope of her eternal future.
At her funeral, the combined choirs of Fountain of Life sang a Lunda song that was a favorite of Chilombo’s.
Click here to listen to the choirs singing this song: Nzambi muneni
Nzambi muneni diyi nembilanga –God is Almighty
Hinamba kaleka kumwimbilaku –I will never stop singing and praising him
Hayuma yeneni yananililiyi –For all that he has done for me
Kukenga kwindi hadami kwasweja –His love towards me is great
Ne’nidi namali mambwambe amavulu –If I have money, I have so many friends
Neyi nayandi mabwambu akashiya –When I have nothing, all abandon me
Ilana mwanta Yesu hambakashiyaku –But Jesus never abandons me
Yesu himbwambu dami washinshika –He is the only true friend I have
Chinuku kama nutulu twakufwa –When I sleep in death
Mabwambu jami akashiya –All friends and relatives will abandon me
Ilana mwanta Yesu hambakashiyaku –But Jesus never will abandon me
Kukenga kwaindi hadami kwasweja –Because his love towards me is great
Certain moments beckon us to notice what seems beyond our actual grasp. They tug at the ache in our hearts, that built-in longing for eternity. Sometimes in the midst of daily life, we’re reminded that there is so much more, and we hear the echoes of our heart-cry: “Your kingdom come; your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Like a breeze blowing a hint of incense to our attention, we catch the fragrance of another world, layered on top of the very realities that fill our eyes.
Living here in Africa, my Western nose is freshly alive to the great variety of scents around me. Read the rest of this entry
Sometimes a simple thing can make a huge difference in someone’s life. As a pastor, I’ve seen many times how when someone gets involved in serving others, they begin to experience life and church in a better way. I’ve just had a vivid reminder not only of the importance of getting involved, but also of how much a difference you can make for someone else by inviting them to join you in being involved.
The story itself seems classic: a young woman is going to church, but Read the rest of this entry
I continue to be surprised to find myself in Africa, given the distance—not only geographical distance but conceptual distance—it represents between my previous expectations about what my life & career would involve and what the reality has become. Don’t get me wrong: I’ve been a (mostly) willing participant in the choices that have shaped my steps and brought us here as a family, which makes it all the more surreal in its own way.
I’ve lost track of the number of times that I’ve been asked how a PhD in Chemistry, a university professor with tenure, has ended up helping with churches and a pastors’ college in southern Africa. The short answer, of course, is that it’s a long story. But one theme that runs through the story is this: Read the rest of this entry
I enjoyed the privilege of celebrating Easter with two congregations in Lusaka—Fountain of Life in Chibolya in the morning, and the New Springs of Life church plant in Bauleni during the afternoon. Both worship services, focusing on the resurrection reality and our risen Lord Jesus, were in some sense a reflection of heaven’s own celebration. Read the rest of this entry
Let’s face it: Christians around the world worship God in a variety of styles. It’s easy to say, “Well, of course, that’s because of cultural differences. Africans worship differently than Europeans.” But this answer, while true to a certain extent, isn’t complete enough Read the rest of this entry
More than a statement for locating ourselves on a map, it’s a statement of presence. In my years as a pastor, I’ve interacted with many people who are having trouble accepting the position and situation of life they find themselves in. Whether we’re in transition or feeling “stuck”, it is vital that we be able Read the rest of this entry