AFRICA in Photos

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I fell in love with Africa. We traveled to three countries, Mozambique, Swaziland and South Africa, with an organization called Children’s Cup. The missionaries, directors and leaders are brilliant, with a unique passion for orphans and widows. While they are committed to serving people, they lead with vision, strategy and radical service. It is our honor and privilege to partner with them! Thank you Pastors Philip and Holly for inviting us on the journey!

DSC_2297We landed in Mozambique, drove outside of Maputo, dropped off our luggage and traveled straight to a Care Point. This is the first baby I laid my eyes on. Naturally, if it was not illegal to kidnap children, he would currently be an Abercrombie.

DSC_2315Again, if it was not illegal to take babies from Africa, this one would currently be a Galbreath. Chad is our business brain at Oasis. Cody and I love their family!

DSC_2302See the little one I am holding from the photo above? It’s shocking to see babies raising babies. Little ones who have a baby strapped on their back who walk several miles to eat one meal for the day.

DSC_2353Is she stunning or what? Mozambique is a communist nation, even though it is publicly known as a republic. Portugese is the native tongue. Dirt roads, orphans, widows, unfinished homes and huts… the poverty is devastating.

DSC_2369High 5’s and hand games are fun… especially when there is a giant challenging you.

DSC_2400Looks like Pastor Philip and Chad could have both taken this little guy home!

RaquelleThis is beautiful, world changer Raquelle. She is a worship leader at the church and helps with the Kids Ministry. Philip taught a powerful message of leadership and restoration to this team.

DSC_2521These babies are wearing aprons made by Moms in the community. They are learning a trade from Pastor Isaac and Carol’s Mom. For just $125.00 per month, all fabrics, materials, sowing machines and trainings are offered free to the women.

DSC_2565Speaking of Isaac and Carol Williams, here they are with Pastor Philip and their beautiful daughters. Isaac’s parents live on the land and he grew up a missionary’s kid in Brazil, so he is fluent in Portugese. His beautiful wife is Brazilian. God is doing a great work through their Care Point and Church! Thank you for an incredible visit to Mozambique!

DSC_2568And thank you for our first trip to the Indian Ocean!

SwazilandOn to Swaziland, some of the most beautiful land I have ever laid my eyes on. Swaziland has a King and polygamy is widely practiced. The King has 13 wives and almost 30 children. He owns all the land and princes or chiefs give people permission to live on the land. There are no jobs, so many men travel outside the country to work, leaving women and children vulnerable. The HIV Aids rate is close to 50%. Four years ago, there were 1.4M people living in Swaziland and now there are a little more than 900K. There is great pain and there is great hope. I wept more in this country than any other and pray we can return!

KarenThis is Karen. She is married to Jerry and together they lead the Global Leadership Academy for Children’s Cup, Swaziland. She told me that after retirement, God called them to Africa. She was afraid to leave her grandchildren and they remembered the passage where Jesus promises in Matthew 19, “And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will inherit eternal life.” She said to me, “Now look at all my babies…” HERO and LIVING LEGEND.

DSC_2570Here is Jerry, most likely he is worshipping or honoring. These are the only two things I heard him do. This couple left a mark on me! The leaders they are raising up had powerful stories and will do incredible things for the Kingdom.

DSC_2745Philip is the only one who looks cool in this photo. Ben, Director of Children’s Cup told Chad and I to do our thinking poses. We could use some more practice!

DSC_2593I will never forget 200 children charging at us, running into our arms, grabbing legs, feet, waists. Unforgettable greeting! There is more joy in Africa than I have ever seen!

DSC_2623Chad with Pastor Clay Nesmith from Barefoot Church, SC. It was fun to have a few folks from my part of the states!

DSC_2619Working the cauldron with Matt, from Barefoot Church and Pastor Clay’s son. My great-grandmother Lucy had one of these in her backyard for making stew.

DSC_2638Pastor Philip serving the children. The kitchen crew had a serious system!

DSC_2710Beautiful Simbonella. She is a miracle. Ask me her story – I would love to share the powerful, life changing love of Jesus through her!

DSC_2781She is irresistible!

DSC_2775The woman in the middle is Bombi, “Pretty Girl”. She runs the educational programs, the feeding of 200 children daily and this place, the I Am Not Forgotten Home. These are her 10 children, only one is her biological child. Here’s another story I would love to tell you. It will drive you to your knees in worship of our God of restoration! I hope I can clean the toilets in her mansion in heaven!

DSC_2803Pastor Philip about to preach in Pastor Chomba’s church in Swaziland the next morning. Our church, Oasis, pays for the feeding program daily here.

DSC_2845Philip gave Chad and I the honor and privilege of preaching and sharing our stories as well. I think I turned a strange shade of white when he asked us!

DSC_2855Sharing parts of my story that translated was an honor – it was the rape that made an impact. 90% of the women in the room have experienced this injustice.

DSC_2894The widows broke our hearts and we are filled with hope at the power of the local church in this community. Pastor Louis Chomba and his wife Maggie are loving the people with great strength.

DSC_2928I am desperately trying not to cry. Her home made me want to weep and get to work cleaning, patching roofs and anything else she would need. The hardest thing about this trip was walking away from those in need. Our God is able!

DSC_2957Pastor Philip and Pastor Louis overlooking the community he is reaching.

DSC_2985On to South Africa! This is Mitch, another miracle walking. He and his faith-filled, stunning wife, Charlotte, are the Directors of Children’s Cup, South Africa. This guy never met a stranger – he has friends at the border, in every restaurant and has a way of making the African people warm to him, and thank God, to us! They were incredible hosts and we loved every minute with them!

DSC_2964This is the first of three world changing Pastors we met in South Africa who desire to have partners to help them reach the people. I love the creative wallpaper from Penny Saver ads!

DSC_2990If you thought sweeping in your home, in the streets of LA, in the rooms of our partners was hard, try using a broom like this! #BackBreaker

DSC_3007This is the second Pastor and church planter. She and two other women built this structure and she holds church on both sides of her community, as well as a feeding program. Thanks to the generosity of our Pastors, she was able to finish the roof on her second building. She captured us with her grace and her love for Jesus.

DSC_3021The third Pastor was full of life and joy. She is a school teacher in the neighborhood and quite a sharp business woman, owning and renting out her property. She holds church in her home and would like to quit teaching to work full time as a Pastor. That is Mitch and Charlotte with us.

DSC_3044Here is the city’s Pastor of Pastors. He has a large church with two locations and is personally coaching Pastors in the city. He is a bridge builder and his laugh makes you smile and laugh also. The joy of the Lord is obviously his strength.

DSC_2378My favorite photo of the trip. I fell so in love with Africa. I cannot wait to go back! I left so much out of this blog, but it would be a thousand photos long if I don’t stop now.

Jesus is alive all over the Earth and He is still making miracles. He is still healing lives. He is still restoring people and families and He is still raising people up to declare His wonderful works and give Him all the glory. What an honor it is to serve Him and simply do what He said to do for people.

Love you and praying for you!