Reflections after 4 years at Zion Village

Psalm 57:2  I call to God Most High, to God who fulfills His purpose for me. 

After serving Christ at Children of Zion Village, Namibia Africa, for four years, we still say that there is not a day that we would call “just another day.”  Every day has something new, some kind of opportunity or challenge (depending on our attitude about it), dirt and sand, items breaking, many blessings, beautiful sunsets, smiling children, crying children, sickness, healing, songs, visitors, singing and dancing, animals, bumpy sometimes flooding roads, slippery roads, spiders, bugs, termites, snakes, someone knocking at our door at any time of the day and night, many prayers and HOPE, the HOPE that only GOD can Give

Through your prayer and financial support and with God's guidance, here are a few of the updates that have been achieved since 2010:

5 babies have been placed at Zion

1 child has been adopted by a local national couple

1 young adult is finishing her first year of college

2 young adults are planning to attend college next year

5 learners have graduated from secondary school

26 learners attend 4 different secondary schools

7 children have been reunited with family

10 children have been discharged

7 boys are residents of the Genesis house. We are planning to build additional single family homes to continue this model

The staff included 28 local nationals (teachers, inside workers and outside workers).

30  come from the nearby village for Saturday afternoon bible study

105 are enrolled in the Children of Zion Village primary school, 85 come from town and pay tuition

The Ebners arrived in 2013 as missionary partners from The Mission Society

Donations are being received from the business community and individuals

Discipleship activities include the staff and members of the local community as well a 2 Spiritual Retreats for staff. 

Working toward increased self-sufficiency to include: school tuition, sales of garden produce and trailer rentals

James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.                                           If you push against the pace of grace you will loose the mysterious grace and joy that God has for you.  So many times we have tried to take control because it seems God is not listening or at least not answering.  It seems that we might miss something if we don’t have an immediate answer.  But with God it is just the opposite.  God is never late and His timing is always perfect, even, if it is the hour or the day before we need it.  We don’t have a problem having faith in the darkness of night because we have faith knowing that the dawn will always come. We must have faith in the same way, through the difficult times, knowing that God will get us through the storm to the rainbow. It is faith from something, through something to something that is much more glorious.  No matter how fierce the storm, God is at work. Life is a mystery to be lived, not a problem to be solved.

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In what appears to be bleak and dark can be the most incredible outcome of the mystery.  At some point you will be able to say “Oh Happy Night!!”  This is because the most beautiful, most glorious dawn has come. 

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If we are in too much of a rush and push against the pace of grace, and if we are not following the guidance of God, there will be no long lasting fruit and you will collapse from burn out.  When we take matters into our own hands rather than waiting for God to work in His time, disaster follows. Burn out in ministry, burn out in joy, burn out in fun, burn out in life. Do not run ahead of God today – though He is not early, He is NEVER late!

Prayer is the glue that holds everything together.  We have learned that we don’t go anywhere or say anything out loud before praying.  Otherwise we might be making decisions on our own and not with God’s lead.  Sometimes it is hard to “put people off” but without God’s wisdom, we cannot be confident of the outcome.  Breath is to the body as prayer is to the Spirit. And we all know that when our breath stops, our life stops.  When prayer stops, the Spirit is not present.

Psalm 139:9-10  If I live at the eastern horizon or settle at the western limits, even there Your hand will lead me; Your right hand will hold on to me.                                   God’s call is not over 2 or 4 or 10 years.  It is over a lifetime.  Just like we are to be teachers and learners all the days of our lives.  We all need godly examples and we all need to be spiritually fed and we all need to make disciples.  It is over a lifetime. 

Believe on God’s Word and expect peace and joy.  By being positive and believing the best of everybody, we release peace and joy in our lives.  We get what we believe and what we think.  People may forget what you said and what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel.  Spend quality time with others and encourage them.  Listen with interest.  God gave us two ears and only one mouth.  So, should we not be twice as swift to listen and learn?  Be gentle, patient and loving to each person you meet.

The thing that makes God’s Grace so amazing is that it is both completely undeserved and completely free.  His grace is given to us because of His great love for us.  Rather than focusing our attention on ourselves, the grace we receive should cause us to glorify and praise Him. 

There are disappointments everywhere in the world but it is how you deal with it.  Trusting God completely and believing that His plan is infinitely better for you than your own will prevent you from being disappointed with God.  Run to God. The ONLY One Who can help you and truly comfort you in your time of pain.  Dr. Tom Malone said, “When God is going to do something wonderful, He starts with the difficult.  When God is going to do something miraculous, He starts with the impossible.” 

We used to think that we would never want to repeat the first 3 years at Children of Zion Village – probably the hardest days of our lives.  BUT, now we are convinced that these were the BEST days of our lives because we were drawn closest to God and our faith grew so strong and our prayers and appreciation were/ are so different.  Why?  God’s Grace and promised Faithfulness!!  This is God’s work.  It is NOT US!  We could never do this work without HIM!!!  Thank you God!!!!!

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Romans 15:13 May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing (through the experience of your faith) that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing with hope.

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Psalm 121:1, 2, 7, 8  I lift up my eyes to the hills – where doth my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  The Lord will keep you from all harm – He will watch over your life: the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore!

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We thank God for YOU!!!  We thank Him that He has touched your heart to partner with us in His Mission in Namibia.  WE cannot be here without your prayers, support and encouragement. 

Philippians 1:3-6 I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.