Zambia Mission Trip

Monday, June 3, 2024: I’m headed to Zambia!

After a week of sickness, a long weekend of moving the family to the new home this morning I packed my bag to leave KC bound for Zambia, Africa. I’m weak and tired, I’m sad to leave my family, the timing doesn’t seem good and yet God sends. I trust God will do good in my wife, my kids, the church family I’m honored to serve, the people of Zambia, and my own heart. And so I go. Jesus is worth it! I’m excited to see what He’s going to do!
I packed one bag, am sent on one mission to proclaim one message -> hope in Christ for the good of humanity and the glory of God alone.
We’ll team up from Center City Church from New Mexico to go on gospel mission to partner with our brother Pastor Blessings at Faith Baptist Twatasha. In a couple days 10 of us will hit boots on the ground in Zambia. We plan to have a kids camp, a pastoral training for local pastors, a leadership conference for his church and worship nights. We land in Zambia June 6th and head back to the States June 17th.
Stay tuned to see a day-to-day and play-by-play during the mission trip w/ updates and pics.
Please pray for my wife and kids in a new home without me.
Please pray I’m healed from sickness and supernaturally empowered to proclaim the gospel.
Please pray for the gospel to go forth and for God to get the glory!
 I’m on a jet plane and can’t wait to get home again! -Pastor Jim

Day 2 – OPERATION: Stay Awake

  The flight path from KC to Europe skipped 6 hours ahead so I landed at 6am in Ireland and it was 12am in KC. That means I basically skipped a night of sleep. A 24-hour layover in Dublin becomes operation stay awake until I can check into lodging.
Exhausted, I struggled through sickness. The afternoon sun was a saving grace and the beginning of the enjoyment of my trip. I met locals and heard funny Irish colloquial before crashing for a much-needed 12 hours of sleep. For breakfast, beans and toast
Tomorrow is a day and half of travel to Zambia. Little sleep awaits.
Please pray for healing of my sickness.‬ ‭

For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

~2 Corinthians‬ ‭4‬:‭17‬-‭18

DAY 3 & 4 – Gospel Partners Unite

  • killing time in Irish coffee shops
  • Airport nap
  • Slight delays and trying to sleep on plane
  • DBL->LHR->ADD->LUN = Flying FUN 🤩
  Connected with our New Mexico partner church in Ethiopia. Then flew to Zambia together. Just ate our kick-off meal together and tomorrow, drive 7 hours from Lusaka to Kitwe. And meet up with Pastor Blessings!!
 We were able to help a young Zambian named Eric. He came to eat dinner with us. We prayed for him and will meet him in the morning to buy him a bus ticket before we hit the road. Grateful for the opportunity to serve and excited for what God has planned.
Please pray for our ministry work!

DAY 5 – Driving with purpose

  •  no luck at the bus station to find Eric with 1000 people and 50 buses.
  • while praying together in the morning devotion, we heard local children singing in their native language. It was beautiful!
  • driving across Zambia gave us a good picture into the life of some Zambians
  • delays, road closure, traffic, and a couple encounters with police. (It’s a racket 💵)
  • 9 hours on the road and driving with purpose until our sweet reunion with Pastor Blessings
Pray God blesses our work and the people of Twatasha Zambia.
Pray God would heal my sickness.
 Thanks for support! Love from Zambia!!🇿🇲

DAY 6 – BOOTS on the ground

  • Pastor Blessings showed us around the city of Kitwe.
  • We ate traditional Zambian lunch w/ base being Nshima (corn meal into a think type mashed potatoes) w/ dipping sauce, a steak, beans, and greens that you eat with your hands. It was delicious.
  • The afternoon women’s conference was a huge success.
  • men gathered to pray, walk the neighborhood of Twatasha, and play soccer w/ kids
  • ended the day with/ Sermon prep in Africa
  • Tomorrow I’ll preach Luke 15:1-10 w/ an interpreter translating to Bemba.
We love Africa! What a blessing to come and serve! God is good.
Please pray I’m healed from sickness!
Please pray for the preaching of God’s Word!
Please pray for kids camp starting tomorrow afternoon!

So he told them this parable: ‘What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it? And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing. And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and his neighbors, saying to them, ‘Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep that was lost.’

DAY 7 – Preaching at ground zero

  • Sunrise sermon prep
  • Before breakfast my roommate Anthony met a young Zambian man named Kennedy at the hotel pool. We ended up talking with him for 45 minutes about the good news of Jesus. Grateful to be sent halfway around the world to share hope with a young man who reminded me of myself at his age.
  • Walking around outside First Baptist Twatasha Church I was deeply moved by the 5-year-long answered prayer to be there, with a people I love,  preaching to a church I labored in prayer over, and serving alongside a brother I love.
  • I saw the water well God allowed us to help build.
  • Worship was powerful even though most of it was in Bemba.
  • It was fun to preach at ground zero alongside my brother interpreting.
  • The team did great connecting with the church body and planning for the kids camp starting tomorrow.
Pray the people of God would live as sent ones on the grand mission of God.
Pray we would all ask the Lord every morning, “who will it be today? Who are you sending me to tell about Jesus today?”
Pray for the kids camp tomorrow. We expect 200-300 kids.
 Thanks for your support and love! From Africa, Pastor Jim

DAY 8 – Reaching 250 Zambian Kids with the Gospel

  • we arrived at church with 60 kids standing in a line and chanting a welcome at our arrival 📣
  • we walked around the neighborhood blowing whistles and shouting “Jungle” which is the name of the kids camp. Everyone came to see what was happening. More and more kids joined. I threw one kiddo on my shoulders, carrying her to the camp.
  • 250 kids were split into two teams: Red and Blue
  • They competed in games and cheered each other on ⚽️
  • Heard the gospel story presented through color themes by Jordan
  • Split into 8 groups memorizing scripture (Jn 3:1-10) and received shirts that they were ecstatic about
  • The leaders did a great job connecting with, serving, and sharing the gospel with these kids
  • In the evening, we leaders practiced a play for kids camp tomorrow. I get to play the policeman 👮‍♂️. Become all things for the sake of the gospel!
My heart is filled ministering with to our brothers and sisters in Zambia! Pastor Blessings and his church family are doing a great work here!
 Pray the gospel penetrates and renews the hearts of these beautiful kids. We expect 300-350 for the close of camp tomorrow.
 Pray for our team battling some sickness.
 Pray for more gospel partners to join the work in Zambia!
Love you all! From Africa, Pastor Jim

Day 9 – A Sea of Kids Leads to 45 Accepting Jesus As Savior

  • we arrived for the Final Day of kids camp and walked around the village again with a whistle and chant inviting all to attend. We started with 100 kids. So many kids came; it was a sea of children walking through the streets shouting “Jungle” (the name of the camp).
  • 500+ kids attended. We lost count. We had to move the sanctuary outside because all the kids wouldn’t fit.
  • 2 kids had memorized all 10 verses, and many more did such a good job reciting scripture from memory
  • the kids enjoyed lots of games
  • AND after a gospel presentation and a gospel play kids chose to follow Jesus at two different times. A total of 45 kids accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.
  • We fed 500 kids and gave them gifts for their accomplishments in studying God’s Word!
We are all blown away at what God did and his ability to do more than we think, ask, or imagine. We’re exhausted and yet our hearts are singing with joy as we crash into our beds tonight.
 I learned my first Bemba word, and people are taken aback when I ask how they are doing in their native language “muli shani.” I also got to help make the local food stable called Nshima. It’s hard to be here and not fall more in love with the Lord and His people in Zambia!
Pray for the kids who chose to follow the Lord.
Pray for the light of Christ to shine upon the entirety of the Twatasha community.
Pray for a God-sized vision for the next 10 years for Pastor Blessings and the entire Faith Baptist Twatasha Church family.

DAY 10 & 11 – Serving Leaders at 10 Local Churches

The 10th day was a day of rest and hitting the mission trip metaphorical wall where you’re exhausted, miss family, and want to go home. When the fun wanes, faithfulness must kick into high gear. This typically lasts a day for me with prayer, rest, sharing with the team, and God lifts my eyes upon Him again. (Yes, we ate dried caterpillars!)🐛

After a day of rest, we hosted a full-day conference for the pastors and leaders of 10 local churches. The theme was, “Applying the Word of God,” and Faith Baptist Church Twatasha hosted a Leader’s Conference on that very topic. The conference was for pastors and leaders within churches in the area and had three sessions related to the Word of God: Expounding, Delivering, and Counseling with the Word of God.

I was gifted the opportunity to teach about preaching the word of God. After teaching the basics, we took a passage and collectively outlined a sermon together.

After the conference, we handed out Bibles written in both English and Bemba. We also presented the participants with several books related to the three sessions. The joy of receiving a Bible caused tears to well up in me.
All in all, it was a full and satisfying day with lots of good participation from the Church Leaders.

Please pray for local church leaders as they are hungry to grow and zealous to see Twatasha transformed by the gospel.

Pray for the missions team to all break through the wall and enjoy serving the last several days here at Faith Baptist Twatasha.

Pray for the next 3-days as we have morning journies inviting the community to worship gatherings in the evening!