Forgotten Voices' Mission:

"Demonstrating the love of Jesus Christ by equipping local churches in southern Africa to meet the physical & spiritual needs of children orphaned by AIDS in their communities."

Monday, April 28, 2008

My hopes and dreams for a New Zimbabwe

This weekend, I was in upstate New York visiting my sister and her husband. They just had their first child on Thursday morning. Nick is so full of potential and possibilities. So full of hope and opportunity. Watching his wrinkle-free, unscratched face gently rise up and down as he slept, I couldn't help but praise God for this amazing gift. This new life was full of so much good... so much to be discovered.

When I watched Nick sleep, I also couldn't help thinking about Zimbabwe and what it must've been like for people in 1980 when it became a free nation...a new nation.

I was born in 1979, the last year before Zim became independent. When my father, Denis, used to cradle me to sleep when I was 1 year old in 1980, he used to pray that God would help him realize that I did not belong to him. That God would give him a heart to allow me to go anywhere in the world I felt called to go. But he jokingly pleaded with God that God could send me ANYWHERE, just not send me to either Zimbabwe or Mongolia.

My father told me about his prayer for me when we boarded the plane for my 3rd trip to Zim, a trip he joined me on for his 1st time to Africa.

In an earlier post today, I put up a link to a Guardian article that states Presidential Election Results for Zimbabwe will be released on Tuesday, April 29th, a month after the election was held.

As I pray for the situation there, which are already incredibly tense across the country, I can't help but think about Zimbabwe being free again...not belonging to any one leader or political from corruption...full of so many really good people that long to be part of a NEW Zimbabwe.

Regardless of what happens and who leads, I am praying for a NEW ZIMBABWE.

I pray for a NEW Zimbabwe, where the economic landscape reflects the hopeful optimism of people that yearn to make your day with their kindness and make an honest buck for their families. Where the people are dominated by the belief that tomorrow will be better than today and God will redeem the seemingly unredeemable...and they can be a part of this new dawn.

I am hopeful for a new Zimbabwe, where my wife and I can roam the streets of the beautiful cities and townships and rural from fear and hopeful that our own future children will be able to come and experience our 2nd home, as we have for the last 4 years.

I am hopeful that over 1.5 million AIDS orphans in the country will be able to receive their fair share of international aid, without being punished for the disagreements their governments have with other international powers.

I am hopeful that over 500 people that will die today because of AIDS related illnesses will die with some satisfaction that the children they leave behind will be entitled to an education that is both affordable and safe....and the assurance that their extended relatives will have the opportunity to get a job, make an honest wage, and save money for University...or save just for a month to start a small income generating project.

I pray that God sees these hopes and responds over these next few days and helps usher in a new Zimbabwe... a place of peace, safety, generosity, love, and kindness. This is a land I've heard a lot about from those that new the old Zimbabwe after it was birthed in 1980.

Together, as we celebrate the birth of my young nephew, Nicholas, and we dream about his future life together, we also dream about hope for a new Zimbabwe and the thousands of children that will be born this week in a land I love.

We invite you to join us in that dream and in that prayer.

Praying with you,

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