Saturday, November 15, 2014

Katie Goes to Haiti


Katie Goes To Haiti

He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” These are the words that have been spoken to me and to all who believe Jesus is Lord. Many of you who are reading this know I aspire to go overseas someday to do mission work long term. God has blessed me with the desire to go to the places where most people would not ever think of going. I have been the most joyful in those places because I am forced to die more and more to myself and to become more and more alive in Christ because I know God is the ONLY one who can save.

I was blessed in the fall of 2011 to be a part of Harding’s Study Abroad program in Zambia. I was able to live in the southern province of Zambia for three months. During that time we were able to travel some to meet different missionaries in the northern province of Zambia and around all of the countries in east Africa. I fell in love with one of those places we visited, that being the northern province of Zambia. I had a strong longing to go back. In the summer of 2013, God allowed that to happen. I was able to work, learn and grow from the missionaries there for two months.

Now that you know a little bit about my background in overseas missions, this December I will be embarking on five day trip to Haiti. This will be my first trip to Haiti along with my shortest time spent overseas serving. I was a little bit apprehensive about only going somewhere for five days, but my wise little brother said something that hit me: “Don’t ever limit what God can do in five days.” Wow! He was so right!! I think back to Genesis 1 where God creates the sky in one day! What?!? Have you ever looked out the window on an airplane, or have you ever looked up out in the middle of nowhere on a clear night and seen the sky? If you’re anything like me, it’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that God made all of that in ONE day! Everyday I live and I go out into the world, whether it is in Searcy, Arkansas, Mumena, Zambia, or in Myan, Haiti, I want Jesus to be the reason why I am serving and want Jesus to be evident, and not serve because they are in such great need of food, medicine, and so on. The only thing that saves is Jesus Christ.

We will be departing December 30th and returning on January 3rd. My trip to Haiti this Christmas break is a great opportunity to open my eyes to another culture and people. I am confident that God is going to do amazing things during my time there and after my time there.

In preparing for my trip I have been spending a lot of time in prayer. I would really love it if you were to be involved and apart of my trip. We will be working with an orphanage in Myan, Haiti. I have a list of all the children’s names and if you would like to be praying alongside me for each one of them please send me an email and I can send you a specific child that you can be praying for.

My email address is:

God Bless You!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013


I can’t believe that this Friday it will be exactly three weeks since I arrived home from Africa. Life has been on the fast foreword button ever since I have arrived. As soon as I arrived home I have been so busy I don’t even know how I have had time to do everything that I have done and even take a breath.

I drove the nine hours to Searcy two Thursdays ago and got moved in all weekend. I am so blessed to have amazing friends that were willing to help move me completely out of storage.

After finally getting moved in and unpacked I was able to stop and process this summer more. I learned and grew so much this summer. God worked in me a lot. Some of the things that He was really working on me this summer I am going to completely real and honest and share with whoever is reading this.

One of the things that He worked on me this summer was He taught me that I CAN do mission work as a single woman. God taught me that if it is His will for me to be single I can do mission work because I am not alone, I am a child of God and He has equipped me with His Holy Spirit living inside of me that is capable to do the immeasurable. But also if He does have plans for me to be with someone He taught me what it looks like to be a submissive wife and how to encourage one another in our relationships with God. Either way I know God has equipped me to do whatever His will is if I am seeking Him in everything I do. “The Lord himself goes before you and will be  with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged" Deuteronomy 31:8. I know that if it is His will for me to be single it will be difficult sometimes, but I would rather be single following God’s will for my life than to settle with someone who isn’t a man completely in love with God and be unhappy or not treated like a daughter of God.

Even after returning to America and Harding, I realize God is still teaching me a lot! He is teaching me that it is okay to grieve for the people in America, for people in Zambia and people all around the world who do not know and have a relationship with God. I have been given the heart of the Father and my heart breaks at what breaks His. He has given me new eyes and I am learning that I need to stop listening to satin’s lies telling me that I need to change and go back to the old me to “fit in better” and the lies that I need to understand everything completely. But God is whispering in my ear, “you don’t have to change and you don’t need to understand everything”. The answer to the darkness in the world, I now see, is Jesus. I am daily trying to run as has hard as I can to Him. Not because I am trying to change the new eyes that I have, but to let Him hold me in His arms and surround me with His mercy and grace. He is daily overwhelming me with His compassion, even through the things that break my heart and make me crumble. When I think there is something I don’t know about God or the Spirit, I take hope in that. He tells me, “I teach you ALL things”. This season in my life I am just going to have to trust in His word. It is a season of Him maturing me as His daughter, to hear His voice. He has things to show me before He will send me out.

Thank you for keeping me in your prayers and thoughts this summer and supporting me and believing in me to do God’s work in Zambia. I could never express how grateful and honored I am for the experience I got this summer. Please continue to keep the Love’s in your prayers and me as I die more and more each day to myself and grow more and more closer to God.  

Monday, July 29, 2013

Mapunga Springs

This past Sunday we all loaded up in the Loves’ “family” car (everyone being Carlos included). We drove to a church that I had never been to or had even really heard them talk about. On our way, Rick started to tell me about the church and how it was established a little bit over a year ago by Sam. It was basically a house church because it was a very small church with five members that literally meet at a member’s house.

When we arrived, we were greeted by two men, and we were welcomed into their kizaza (a hut that has a thatched roof but doesn’t have any walls that enclose it). They had a couple of little one-person benches and three larger chairs and two “mats” (old corn meal bags) for the children to sit on. Of course, when we walked in they wanted the mwngu (white person)/ guest to have the nicest chairs/benches. So we sat down with the two men, and someone else showed up, and we all visited until another person showed up.

Rick started asking one of the men questions, and the man shared his story with us. He was born again last May when Sam (the Love’s teammate) was teaching the men in his area and trying to start a church. He told us that several years ago he attended an evangelical church for a while. His wife was unfaithful to him and wanted to divorce him. He went to the churches leaders, and they didn’t do anything and pretended like nothing had happened. His wife wasn’t punished, and was allowed to continue sinning. So after she divorced him, he stopped attending the evangelical church and wasn’t going to church anywhere else.

He had visited a group who called themselves a church of Christ, but were definitely not because they still followed the traditional African beliefs. Some of the church leaders were involved in a “floating coffin” ceremony. This is a ceremony that is practiced in situations where they believe that the deceased died “randomly.” In other words, the deceased didn’t die for any obvious reason (illness, accidental death, etc.). They believe that in these types of deaths, the deceased had been “witched.” In the ceremony, everyone gives the person who holds the coffin money and pays that person off. If someone doesn’t or isn’t able to give money to the person holding the coffin, they are assumed to be the person who had the deceased “witched.” This person is then killed. After he saw the church leaders participate in this ceremony, he didn’t want to have anything to do with that church congregation. Sam and some others were doing Bible studies to start a church in the area, and he was baptized and became a member of the church that was being started.

The church consists of five faithful members. The man who shared his story with us was the same man who had given his house to the church and was in the process of “shifting” (the word they use for moving) to his new house that he had just finished building.

He asked us if we would pray for their church because they were having a hard time growing more than the five members. They had been doing Bible studies every week at different nearby villages to teach and encourage others to become Christians. But despite their efforts, they still weren’t growing. I think that the other church nearby that claims to be Christians but still practice the traditional beliefs is what might be scaring people away from the church they are trying to start.

I admire these men so much because of their commitment to continuing what they believe God is calling them to do even though the fruits of their work might not be evident right now. They are devoting everything they have, including their homes.

I would like to ask you the keep the church in Mapunga springs in your prayers and keep the people that they are reaching out to in your prayers.

Monday, July 22, 2013

All Consuming Fire

Yesterday was probably the most thrilling day I have had this summer in Mumena. Yesterday morning on my way over to have breakfast at the Love’s, one of their huge pigs had gotten out of the pig pin and was running around in their yard. I went to get some help to put it back in its pin. After putting it up I helped Karen feed and water the pigs. I ran inside and had a quick breakfast and we all loaded up for church.
When we arrived at the church they told Rick that he was going to be doing the lesson and asked if he needed a translator. He said no. I think they were kind of surprised. He did the whole lesson in Kii-Kaonde (the local language). Lydia sat next to me and drew in my journal a picture of Noah’s ark.
Lydia's drawing of Noah's ark
After church we headed home and I was just thinking of how nice it was going to be to have an afternoon off to relax. When we got back I did the dishes while Karen got lunch ready. Rick had gone outside for something and he could see a fire that was fairly close to Humphrey’s house and farm. Humphrey had gone to church with us and was going to have lunch with us. Rick told Humphrey he had better go and check to make sure that his family’s farm and house was okay. I could hear crackling and popping from inside the house even with the water running so I knew it had to be close. I walked outside and could see smoke all around.
Rick ran up to the top of the kizaza (a hut on top of an old termite mound) to make sure that it wasn’t going on their fields. I climbed to the top of the kizaza to see everything and I could tell it was a lot bigger than any of the other grass fires I had seen. Rick ran down and broke off a branch and started walking down towards their field and called Humphrey to help, who had reported back that his house and fields were all safe and it had just passed them.
Karen and the kids all wanted to see also so they all climbed up to the top of the kizaza where I was at. All of the sudden the flames got very close to their fields and got very large so Karen asked if I could stay up with the kids. She ran down and ripped off a huge branch from one of the trees. After that happened I knew that it was very serious! I was standing at the top watching huge flames come closer and closer. Rick, Karen, Humphrey, and Carlos were hitting the grass that was on fire with all their might to stop it from getting any closer to their fields. All of the sudden to my opposite side, closer to the house I heard more crackling. I looked over and more of the fire had spread! Karen ran that way to try to stop the fires and Humphrey started to yell up to me to get the kids down before it possibly could become unsafe. I grabbed Caleb and Emily and carried them down with Lydia trailing right behind. On our way down Karen asked if I could help. The kids ran to their house. Humphrey grabbed me a huge branch and we went running towards the fire. All the things I knew about fires started running through my head. When I go to the fire I started beating it and I could feel the heat as the fire grew bigger and bigger. I had no idea how to properly and efficiently put out a grass fire besides calling 911 and lots of water which neither of the two were really an option, so I just continued to beat it with all my might. I kept thinking to myself… well I do have one skill that I know to help with fires and that is… to stop drop and roll if I were to have fire on myself but that wasn’t very helpful either for putting out a fire. Hehe
We were able to stop the fire on one side because there was a fire-guard (which is a line of preplanned burnt grass to prevent fires from passing that point). But we had the other side, which was a lot closer to their house and thatched fence. Me, Karen, Humphrey, and Carlos were there until it finally stopped.
Rick had said to one of the men, “God’s fire is going to be much bigger, so each person must be ready before Jesus comes”.
One of the houses that the chief had given the missionaries here called “the pink palace” the fire had gotten very close to also. Rick and the two boys (Humphrey and Carlos) were able to help a family near that house. They saved their two cows (one which was pregnant). It was pretty ironic because those same people who they helped saved their cows were the same people who had been letting their goats go wherever they wanted. They had been destroying everyone’s fields. Just earlier that morning they had destroyed the crops that a group from the states had planted to test to see how it would grow. So they could help the people in the area to better their gardens. But even though they had been destructive Rick and the boys still helped them.
“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4:31-32
We were going around to try to help everyone around that needed help. Loveness (one of the teachers), who had been causing a lot of trouble in the community. We were told that they needed help at her house. We were in the car and we zoomed over to her house.  She was out of town. Her whole maize pile caught on fire and her pig pins all caught on fire. By the time people got there to help two pigs were chard to death and basically the whole maize pile was chard. Someone said that it’s nice as Christians to be able and willing to get the chance to even help our enemies.
            “Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also….But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.” Luke 6:27-35

Here are some pictures from the day:
The Love's field
Me and Humphrey watching the fire burn up his school's farm
Me beating the fire

Once was a white it is black

Wednesday, July 10, 2013



(I will be posting more this week but here is a quick update for today.)

Muloolo: I’m sure you’re wondering what this word means.

It means snake!

Yesterday afternoon, one of the native boys who is like a son to the Loves came up to their back door saying, “knock, knock” (which is common for people to do here). Karen opened the door. The boy, whose name is Humphrey, said, “Karen, can I have some water?” while holding his arm straight out in front of him. She asked what he needed it for, and he said “Oh, a snake just spit at me and almost bit me.” Karen was taken aback by this and said, “Wait…WHAT happened?!” By that time she had started to walk him to the bathroom to shower off. Rick walked in and heard what happened, and he told us to pour milk where the venom had gotten on him so it wouldn’t burn his skin. Karen and I rushed to get some milk. We took Humphrey outside and had him take off his shirt and started dousing him with milk (which looked so funny!). We could see where the venom had hit him, and it was all over him, including his face. It had just missed his eyes by a few millimeters. Thank God it didn’t get in his eyes, or he could have been blinded for a few days. After he took a shower, Karen got him some clean clothes and fed him. He told us that he had accidentally kicked something, and when he looked down, he saw a huge snake. Suddenly, it started to rise up towards his face, and he knew to start walking backwards away from it. After it was at the same height as him and spit, it went back down and went away in the grass. When Karen asked him if he was scared, he said, “Yeah, I was very scared” with the most calm voice. His voice was so calm that you would never know that he was scared or that anything bad had happened.

Here is a picture of the milk being poured onto Humphrey: