Sunday, March 21, 2010


Precious with his new toothbrush
Isaac playing kick the can
family pic! :)
hygiene day
The food we ate all week
My hygiene lesson
Clint and baby Zach
Washing the widow's hands before lunch

Well...we woke up this morning to no electricity. This is becoming an expected thing around here and it's starting to not even bother me anymore. We found out a few hours after we woke up that it had been snowing in NWA. I can't believe that it's snowing there and it's 80+ degrees here. On the way to Esther's House this morning we passed a billboard sign that said "Hygiene Is Important." Very appropriate for the hygiene lesson I'm giving today. The first thing we did today was have Sunday school. Tyler, Abbie and I were teaching the youth class. Tyler gave a great message and 4 people accepted Christ for the first time. These people are SO HUNGRY FOR GOD'S WORD! it's AMAZING! Next was the church service...there was a pretty good turnout. Abbie and Chandler gave their testimonies, they did a GREAT job. Then the Malawian people sang a few songs (they LOVEEE TO SING...their songs go on and on and on! HAHA) Our American team sang God is so Good and How Great is Our God. Clint gave the message. It was pretty powerful. 1 person in church accepted Christ. After church we had lunch at Esther's House. We served the orphans and widows. Abbie and I got to serve by washing their hands. This was very humbling. The food was not good today though. We were told before we left NWA to only put SMALL portions on our plate because they waste NOTHING. It would be very offensive to throw food away. I thought I got a small enough portion but obviously I didn't. We had to eat with our hands today too. I just COULDN'T finish mine. Tyler...being the sweetheart that he is...discretely took mine from me and tried to finish it. When he realized that he couldn't handle it anymore...him and Chandler found a fence to throw it over. You wouldn't believe the way these people pile their plates up. When they have food to eat...they eat as much as they can because they don't know when their next meal might be. I felt horrible wasting food but we just couldn't force it down. Another thing I've been forgetting to write about is hand sanitizer. We all have it with us constantly. As you know...this water isn't clean so we are using sanitizer all the time. The only problem can't pull this out in front of our translators because that could be offensive as well. So a lot of times we have to sneak it. Also we have to sneak food/snack breaks. We always have food in our backpack...specifically for days like today when the food is nearly impossible to eat. I've been living on a lot of peanut butter crackers and granola bars. I have taken more pictures today than anyday so far. These kids are fascinated by cameras...especially when you show them the picture on the screen after you take it. I don't know if i've written about this or not yet but it is GORGEOUS HERE! The mountains/green grass/plants/flowers. The scenery is BEAUTIFUL! I didn't expect that at all. Next on the schedule was the ministry to the orphans and widows. Esther's house has 50 non-residental orphans, 2 residential orphans, and 50 widows that they feed/clothe. Abbie, Tyler, Chandler, Josh, Meredith and I read the orphans the story of David and Goliath. There was a little confusion because of the language barrier even though we had translators. Our problem...after sharing the asking the people if they have accepted Jesus before. We want them to understand that this is a ONE TIME decision and that once they are saved they are always saved. But somehow that gets lost in translation so we have to make sure to emphasize that over and over in order for them to understand. After the lesson, we got to paint Fluoride Varnish donated by Varnish America on all 52 orphan's teeth. Of course I LOVED this part, but it broke my heart at the same time because some had badly decayed teeth and I couldn't do anything to help them. After the fluoride, we handed out toothbrushes to each of them. Then we played kick the can/ball with them. They had SO much fun. The next thing was what I had been excited about wayyyy before I got here. People started showing up at Esther's House with their purple tickets. The tickets would admit 1 into the dental hygiene lesson that I was teaching. We only had enough toothbrushes/toothpaste/fluoride to invite 135 people. I wish we could have invited more because there are so many that have NO CLUE about taking care of their teeth. It was difficult for me to prepare for this lesson because it is so different here on what they have access to. You can't teach about eating the right foods because they are lucky to even have food to eat some days. Another struggle was explaining floss- they had never seen/heard of it. We didn't have enough to give everyone so they say if you can't give to all...don't give to any. So in place of floss, the only thing I could think of to compare was string. They knew what that was. These people were SO appreciative of this lesson and the toothbrush and toothpaste we gave them. I am SO thankful to all who donated these items to make this possible (Colgate, Patterson Dental, Goetze Dental-Christy Beebe, Fort Smith Surgical-Larry and Varnish America). At the end of the lesson, Tyler shared his testimony and 94 accepted Jesus for the very first time. It's amazing how God used my Dental Hygiene idea to reach people who may not have been reached otherwise. We (our whole team) participated in the fluoride application for the 135 at the hygiene lesson. Even our translators helped out. This REALLY opened my eyes to see the need for dental care here. Obviously education helps a ton because it prevents future issues, but for the people who already have dental problems...they NEED help. Most have major gum disease-loose teeth, heavy calculus buildup and LOTS of bombed out teeth. It hurts me SO bad to know that there's nothing I can do do help them. I'm just glad that God put it on my heart to teach this lesson because at least now they know proper care. I am SO proud of our team for jumping in there...gloves/masks and all....I know they saw some things that they've never seen before. Travis asked afterwards why I didn't warn/prepare them for the loose teeth. I told him that if I would have they might have backed out! :) We've been learning a lot of words in Chichewa. It is fun to try to communicate with the people in the villages. I'm REALLY bad at it. HHA! All I have memorized so far is "Wa Wa" which means HI! and "muli bwanji" which means how are you? I'm going to list a lot of words at the end of today's post. After the hygiene lesson we FINALLY got to shower at Esther's House. The water is freezing cold but it was totally worth it. I felt like a new person. We went back to the house and were greeted by no electricity again. I'm starting to get used to it and it's really not too bad. We just use candles and flashlights. We tried to go to the same store to get cokes but they were closed today. So we rode to a store farther down the street. These people weren't too fond of us...i dont know why? We were in line to pay but the people in the store paid no attention to the line. They said that's pretty normal here though. When we got back home, Beth and Joely had prepared anothere great dinner (chicken spaghetti). It was wonderful. Meredith and I washed dishes tonight. This was an experience. You have to wash/rinse then sanitize with bleach water. Then let air dry. After the dishes we had to wash/sanitize the eggs for breakfast in the morning. O YEAH...I forgot to tell you about 2 amazing kids we met today. They are the only 2 residential orphans at Esther's House. Their names are Isaac and Precious. 2 little 6 year old twin boys who stole all of our hearts. They don't know much English but they just light up when we talk/play with them. Abbie and Tyler would take them home with them today if they could. I definitely would too...if it were possible. They are GREAT!!! Just thinking about leaving them hurts me. They are taken care of very well by Bruce and his wife and Joseph and Evelyn. They all live at Esther's house and are in charge of everything there. Joseph and Evelyn have the CUTEST 4 month old baby boy named Zach. He is named after Zach Kennedy from FB Springdale who brought his whole family here for 2 months. Tonight before bed we played catch was a very intense game. LOTS OF SCREAMING! Very fun though. It is bed time. The HOGS lost again today...Sad stuff! BUT...118 total people were saved today...PRAISE JESUS! Thank you GOD for the hearts of these people and how open and receptive they are to your WORD! AMEN!


MZUNGU- WHITE PERSON (we heard this one a lot hha)

Video of the fluoride application
cute kiddos singing
Outdoor Tour of Esther's House

No comments:

Post a Comment