Friday, October 3, 2014

October 3rd – Our Calamity and our Calling

Last night as I finished posting our blog for the day I forgot to finish explaining how we are adapting to our surroundings.  So before I begin to discuss how powerful this mission trip has already become, I need to talk about last night.

The score stands at Frank - 2, David - 1 in the quest to kill every mosquito in sight before Janet gets Malaria.  As we sat at the airport waiting for luggage I thought I heard Steve ask “So how many mosquitoes are there in Congo? “  However, by this morning Steve had upped the ante a bit by announcing the eradication of a rather large roach and announce “Big bugs are worth four mosquitoes.”  What grown men won’t do for entertainment!  It is true that this team is not above even the lamest of humor as adjust to our new surroundings.

One other note of interest: It is possible to reattach your mosquito net to a 10’ ceiling without a ladder.  Please take note of the following photo to see how I did.   Desperate times require desperate action… even if we were told it was safe here in Kinshasa as long as we were taking our malaria pills.

<<Sorry, I've temporarily lost the photos. I'll repost soon>>

Now, on to today.  What a great way to adjust to the culture and the people of the Congo.  We started the day off with breakfast here at the hotel.  Sitting on the open-air covered patio eating omelets and toast served with orange juice and coffee.   The scene sounds idyllic until you think about the car horns honking outside the hotel walls every two or three seconds all day long.

After meeting Reverend Bonanga and learning that we did not have an agenda with the church in Kinshasa today, we settled in on the patio and held our first session from the He Leads Me Beside Still Waters devotional guide.  What joy and inspiration we received hearing from each of our team about how they came to be a part of Disciples4Water mission team.  In the end we all came to understand that not a single member of this team had to make a decision about coming on this journey.  It has become apparent that each of us were called through a series of events that in the end showed us the way.  We just said “Yes.”

This evening, after we stopped by an artisan market for a quick bit of souvenir shopping (since this will probably be our only chance during the entire trip), we met with a group of missionaries for dinner.  Quite a group.  Among them were Disciples of Christ, Mennonites, and Baptists.  Several had grown up in the DRC, while others were on their third or more extended visits to the country.

We got to hear their stories and we told them ours.  The connections between these servants of God and the DOC church back in Oklahoma is strong.  We talked about Edna Poole, Don and Barbara Angle, and the University in Kinshasa started by the DOC church.  One woman, who lives and serves in Mbandaka but was in Kinshasa for meetings, asked us to join her for dinner when we get to Mbandaka.  

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