My Dusty Road

One Girl's Adventures Into Rural Lands

Category: Ministry

January Ministry Update

Highlights of 2019

Happy New Year! We’re a month into 2020 with a year ahead full of promise and vision. 2019 was an exceptional year with God growing and expanding our ministry and team, reaching new countries with the Gospel. 

This past year our entire team traveled 3,497,901 miles, reached 14 countries, and saw over 40,000 people reached with the Gospel. Please click here to read our 2019 End of Year Report!

As for ministry in Simwatachela, it was an incredible year. I arrived back in Zambia in April after being home to work on support raising and visiting with family, friends, and supporters. I saw God provide through an amazing team and meet our financial needs for 2019! 

After arriving back, I started building a team and we launched into Simwatachela, an area Overland Missions has worked in previously but my first year overseeing the ministry full time. Still being in touch with the leaders in Mukuni and Sekute, nearly every week was now focused in this new chiefdom.

In May, an expedition team joined us for over a week of ministry as we reached a completely new region of Simwatachela. We saw over 200 salvations, and over 100 healings and deliverances! From that time, a revival meeting was launched and discipleship continued. Rueben, our Sustain Missionary, was even able to hold a Farming God’s Way training of which some have already applied to this year’s farming season!

We were also about to launch several other revival meetings and leadership training and have started to see changes in the communities. In fact, even the Chief has noticed a difference!

When we met with Chief Simwatachela, he shared that the areas we’ve been working in are showing a change in the people who have heard the truth of the Gospel. He has an amazing vision to see his people empowered through Christ and succeeding in every area in life. Our team is very excited to be able to work alongside traditional leadership and see how God uses them to bring change to the entire chiefdom!

In August we held our largest annual Leaders Conference ever! This was our first year holding it at our Batoka Training Center, which was the perfect location for everyone coming from 18 different chiefdoms within Zambia! It was an amazing week of intentional time with men and women who are ministers on our team. They are reaching their communities with the truth and power of the Gospel and equipping others to sustain their families and communities! 


“After hearing the teachings about Farming God’s Way, Mama Mandalena (from Sipatunyana Chiefdom) did not sit on the knowledge she received. She went and practiced what she learnt and today she has proudly shared that her harvest was plenty. Despite the drought, she sold her harvest, receiving K1,200 (around $100). Quite a profit when many didn’t receive any harvest this year. She has really thanked the team for these teachings!”

It’s also been a challenging year for Zambia. With hardly any rains in the 2018/19 season, the country entered into the worst drought seen in the past 60 years. The effects of this were seen as the year progressed, the main challenges being a lack of food (causing a dramatic increase in the price of maize meal- the local staple) and drastic power cuts due to the majority of Zambia’s power coming from a hydroelectric plant. Despite it all, God continued to provide and has seen His people through.

Now in the current rainy season, maize is growing and showing the promise of a harvest this year. It hasn’t been the perfect amount of rain, with scattered rains in our area, flooding in others. But we know that God will continue to provide for His children!

“But I have trusted in Your lovingkindness; My heart shall rejoice in Your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, Because He has dealt bountifully with me.” Ps. 13:5-6

A Look Into 2020

God has laid an amazing vision on our hearts for this year. We’re seeing expansion and increase in the chiefdom of Simwatachela. Here’s so plus being laid out for the coming months.

~ Focusing on traditional leadership, we want to organize meetings alongside the Chief to speak into the lives of the village headmen. We’re hoping to lead a leadership conference in May to share about God’s heart for them and their calling as leaders in their communities.

~ In July we’ll have an expedition team join us in launching into a new region. The Chief has asked us to start ministry in Luyaba Village as it’s an area that struggles, especially the youth. We’re looking forward to seeing God move and even launching a youth ministry program in this area!

~ Our annual leaders conference will be held in August with an expected increase in number from even the  previous year! 

~  I’ll be heading to the States in October through the first couple months of 2021, visiting with family, friends, and supporters. As well as raising up the needed partners for the 2021-2022 ministry budget! For the months I’m away, Abigail and Bernard will continue with ministry in Simwatachela as able.

It’s going to be a great year and I’m so excited to see what God is going to do!

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April Ministry Update


Back Home In Zambia!

There’s nothing like home! I’ve been so blessed to call this beautiful country my second home for over 13 years. Arriving back this past month was such an incredibly smooth transition. No delays or lost luggage on the flights, a quick inspection and dusting off the truck and already back full time in the new Chiefdom! Thanks to everyone for your prayers that this transition would go smoothly.

Our base has been a buzz of activity. Over the rainy season, our team here on the ground have worked tirelessly on expanding our kitchen so we can be better equipped to feed sometimes over 100 people! They’ve also worked on new chalets for staff and guests, vehicle repairs, and servicing our expedition trucks. It’s amazing the talents God has given our team and how He uses them for the Gospel!

Next week our Advanced Missions Training program starts off with 20 people arriving for 3 months. They’ll spend the time ministering in the villages and learning everything from foundational theology and world cultures to basic mechanics and even certified as wilderness first responders.

Also, our expedition season is launching with short term teams arriving and ministering with our teams all over the world! I’m very excited that one of these teams will be joining me in Simwatachela on May 19th! They’ll help us launch into a new region of the chiefdom that desperately needs the Gospel. Please keep this upcoming time of ministry in your prayers.

We’ve also been spending our time in the Chiefdom meeting with different leaders and contacts. So far we’ve been able to begin plans for leaders trainings and revival meetings in 4 villages, with another two areas to be set up this next week. I’m so expectant for what God has ahead and know it’s going to be far greater then anything I’ve ever seen before!

As of this past month, we’ve reached 100% of the needed budget for this season! THANK YOU to everyone who has partnered with the ministry here in Zambia! It means the world to me and to those we’ll be able to reach with the Gospel!

Meet Team Simwatachela!

One of our core beliefs in Overland Missions is that we “never go alone.” I am so blessed to have two amazing Zambian missionaries working alongside me in Simwatachela.

Abigail is 29 years old and the oldest daughter of Pastor Winter, who has worked with me in Mukuni and is now overseeing the ministry there. Abigail has spent the last several years joining our expedition teams here in the Southern Province of Zambia. She and I have known each other for several years and are very excited to be working together.

Bernard is 25 years old and has been working with Overland Missions for almost 2 years. He just completed an 8 month internship with our Sustain Department and has also been trained in our kids ministry program. It’s great to have Bernard on our team, and to see the excitement he has for reaching others with the Gospel.

We also have Bianca, who completed our Advanced Mission Training program last year. She’s currently home in Canada, raising her funds to be able to return full time. I can’t wait until she joins us full time!

There’s such beauty in working as a team, each bringing their own giftings and experience to the ministry.  God has put an incredible team together and I am so excited to see Him use us in awesome ways!


Thank you for your continued prayers and support. It means a lot to me and is making a difference in the lives of the people we are reaching in Zambia! 

As always, I look forward to hearing from you. Please also let me know if you need prayer for anything!

Blessings,
Laura

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