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Tuesday, May 30, 2006

COMING BLOG EVENTS. . .

June is going to be packed with interviews with some wonderful Christian authors, book give aways, as well as more insights into our life in Africa as we strive to bring hope to the world around us. So visit my blog often (or sign up to receive it straight to your email) and don’t miss the following interviews!

*Tammy Alexander shares with us about her debut novel, Rekindled, that has already hit the CBA bestseller’s list with book one in her new Fountain Creek Chronicles historical series.

*Sit in on a heart to heart interview with Sharon Hinck and her debut novel The Secret Life of Becky Miller, a heartwarming story for the hero inside all of us.

*Meet best-selling author Susan May Warren. Former missionary to Russia, Everything’s Coming up Josey is for everyone who’s wanted to know what it’s REALLY like to be a missionary.

*Don’t miss this interview with Lynette Sowell on her debut novella coming out in Windswept Weddings where wedding bells are ringing, but there are storms on the horizon that may keep everyone from reaching the church.

Also watch for specific prayer requests on some upcoming ministry needs including a medical clinic we will be running in Zambia in July to help meet people’s physical needs as well as their spiritual needs.

Blessings!

Lisa

Monday, May 29, 2006


WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? PART TWO. . .

Lisa: In the first part of my interview, we saw the need for the Tonga people to hear about the good news of Jesus Christ. In looking at an unreached people group, what are the logistical steps that have to be done in order to start a church planting movement among the people?

Scott: First of all an in depth study of the people has to be made so we can see the complete picture of the group. We made a survey trip to Mozambique in March and after narrowing down where we wanted to go, Antonio spent two weeks doing intense research for us. One of the first things that has to be done is registering with the government and making sure we do things legally. Our resources are limited and we lack man power, but God has blessed us with a church who shares our vision and is helping to put together a team for us. This team will then come to South Africa where we will train them in our philosophies, church planting strategies, and materials. They will then be sent into Mozambique.

Lisa: And once the team is set up there?

Scott: They will start in the population center and begin with a house church. We target the middle class because they will then take the gospel with them back to their villages. As a team, there are many aspects that have to be looked at. There is language learning, identifying leaders among the people then discipleship training for new Christians so they will in turn go to their villages and do the same thing among their people.

Lisa: This would be what will hopefully jumpstart a church planting movement?

Scott: Exactly. A church planting movement is rapidly multiplying of house churches among a people group. We don’t just want to baptize someone and move on. Each Christian is discipled and trained to go out and reproduce their faith in others. This is done by training up leaders and intense discipleship.

Lisa: Thank you so much for sharing and giving us an insight into this new work. If you are interested in partnering with African Outreach Ministries we need you! We need both prayer partners and financial partners with our ministry through individuals and churches. Please contact Scott for further information at sgharris@mac.com

Check back for more about reaching the Tonga for Christ in the weeks to come.

Blessings!

Lisa
www.africanoutreachministries.org

Friday, May 26, 2006


WHY MOZAMBIQUE? PART I. . .

A HEART TO HEART INTERVIEW WITH SCOTT HARRIS

African Outreach Ministries is preparing to train and send workers to go into Mozambique to share the gospel with an unreached people group, the Tonga tribe. With church in Zambia, Zimbabwe, and Malawi, why move into Mozambique? Here’s what Scott had to say.

SCOTT: AOM’s vision has always been to move into other parts of southern Africa, specifically for church planting movements in unreached people groups. We’ve been praying that God would open doors for us to be able to do this, and he has!

LISA: That’s exciting, but it’s hard to believe that there are still people who don’t know about Jesus. What exactly is an unreached people group?

SCOTT: We define it as a tribe where less that five percent of the people are Christian of any kind.

LISA: Wow. Those figures are startling. So tell us how has God begun to answer this prayer?

SCOTT: We received an invitation from a man named Antonio in Mozambique who saw the need for the gospel to come to his people. He has been active in doing research for us to help us choose a tribe. God has also been faithful in connecting us with people who also have a passion for these unreached people. There is a church in Houston who has caught this vision and will be working with us to make sure that the Tonga people are reached with the gospel of Christ.

Lisa: Why the Tonga people?

Scott: Logistically it makes sense because we can get there in a day, but more importantly there are no evangelical missionaries there and few Tonga speaking churches. Without a doubt this is an unreached people group.


Lisa: Why do you think the Tonga people haven’t been reached with the gospel yet?

Scott: They are highly animistic. This means that they are involved in things like witchcraft and ancestral worship. They have also been traditionally resistant to outside influences. Most of the churches in the areas are not in the people’s heart language and few of these Christians are actually Tonga, meaning the majority of the Christians living among the Tonga are transplants in the area from other tribes.

****
Thank you for taking the time to read about the need for the Tonga people to hear the good news of Jesus Christ. Check back on Monday for part two of my interview with Scott on WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? We are currently needing both prayer partners and financial partners to join with us as we reach out to southern Africa. If you’d like to learn more about our ongoing work with African Outreach Ministries, Please contact us at sgharris@mac.com

Blessings!

Lisa

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

WINTER IS HERE. . .

I know it's hard to believe for you who are ushering in summer, but for those of us in South Africa, winter has arrived. All week, I've been pulling out the electric blankets, space heaters (brrr, there is no central heating here!), the kids winter uniforms for school, and moldy sweaters (after a very wet rainy season) that still have to be washed.

Scott's dad helped to repair our very leaky roof now that the rains seems to be over, but there is still lots of other winterizing things that has to be done. (like get rid of all the mold!)

The good thing is that the skies are a beautiful blue and I'm enjoying the warmth of the sun until it drops below the horizon in the late afternoon and is replaced by the chilling winds.

So enjoy your sunny weather as I shiver writing at my desk with a heater at my feet. LOL

Blessings!

Lisa

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

THANK YOU!!!. . .

I have to admit that I cried this morning as Scott left to take Sandy and Farrel to Joburg where they flew out of tonight. It's been such a wonderful time having them here with us. Such a wonderful blessing. It made me realize just how blessed we are.

Not only do I have great inlaws, I have a mom who's always beleived in me. (Thank you , Mom!)

I have a wonderful sister with her great family who always encourage us.

Church familes who continue to support and pray for us.

Friends I chat with on line for encouragement not to mention those who give me great feedback on my writing.

Yes, this missionary life can get lonely and discouraging at times, but today, I am simply thankful.

Blessings,

Lisa

A few more highlights from their visit



Friday, May 19, 2006



ELEPHANTS. . .

We enjoyed taking Scott's parents to an elephant training center for Sandy's birthday. This center is located about thirty minutes from our house. They take in elephants from game reserves that are overpopulated or where elephants are being culled and train them. They then are moved to game reserves where tourists can go on elephant safaris or simply interact with the animals. (These animals are never sent to circuses). We were able to ask tons of questions about the elephants, and the information was so interesting. I really enjoyed learning about these stunning animals as well as becoming aware of the problems that arise when the human population leave no room for these animals. For example, South Africa's land can support 11,000 elephants, yet there are 25,000 in the country.

On the way home we also went to see the world’s largest baobab tree. You can actually go inside the tree to where it used to be a pub.

Blessings!

Lisa

Thursday, May 18, 2006



We had a great cell group last night, and we are growing which is exciting! David, one of the new Christians, shared his testimony which was very moving, and Scott's dad offered him some words of encouragent. It's neat to see the excitement in their eyes as they ask questions and follow the lesson. Please pray for this small group as they grow in their faith.

Tomorrow- Pictures from a visit to an elephant training center for Sandy's birthday.

Blessings,

Lisa

Wednesday, May 17, 2006



SURPRISE!!!. . .

My internet's been out all week, but now that it's up and running, I do have some fun news to post. Last Saturday night, we celebrated Scott and his dad, Sandy's, birthday with a surprise party. I have to admit I was nervous when it came down to pulling it off, but it went without a hitch. They turn forty and seventy on the same day (July 1st) so this was a great time for them to celebrate together. I invited several families over and we ate Mexican food and sat around telling stories. It was a lot of fun, and yes, they were very surprised. It's hard to believe they have just one week left here in South Africa with us. We're enjoying every minute of it though!

Blessings,

Lisa

Sunday, May 14, 2006



GOODBYE MAX. . .

I had some good news to announce today, but it has been pushed aside by the death of our sweet cat, Max. Out of all of our animals, Max is the one I really liked. I know every family with pets has to go through this at one time or another, but we'd only had Max a few months and it's been rather tramatic.

We'll miss you Max!

Lisa

Thursday, May 11, 2006



THE GREAT COMMISION. . .

Scott is spending this week about fifteen minutes from our house at a church planting conference hosted partly by our ministry. Our goal is to help enable ministers to plant churches by equipping them with Biblical knowledge and church planting strategies as well as encouragement for their task.

I visited the conference center for lunch today with Scott’s parents and enjoyed so much seeing some of the church leaders I’ve grown to respect as well as meeting some of the people Scott works with throughout southern Africa for the first time.

People like Robert from the impoverished country of Malawi who’s been selling his furniture to help support the church and recently started a third church in a village where he and his wife personally support some orphans.

Shodankeh, who, with his wife, adopted three war orphans from his home country of Sierra Leone.

Joseph, who sells medicine in a small roadside pharmacy in northern Zambia to help support himself so he can preach the gospel.

Martin from western Zambia who left his people to minister to the Lozi tribe where only 4% of its people attend church of any kind.

Patrick who farms his fields by day to earn a living and spends the rest of his time sharing the good news of Christ as he leads a small village church.

I could see the joy on these men’s face as they not only leaned church planting methods, but were encouraged by the fellowship of one another. Praise God for the way He is working among His people!

Please remember to sign up at the top of the page to receive my blog posts automatically in your email inbox if you’d like to stay up to date with our ministries and prayer requests!

Blessings,

Lisa

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

THINGS WE TAKE FOR GRANTED. . .

How many of you have never heard the story of creation? How God led the Israelites out of Egypt? Or how God sent His son to redeem mankind from sin? Tonight I studied with three people in our new cell group. Two are new Christians, but have little Biblical background except the saving message of Christ Jesus. Scott and I decided to start very basic with them. Tonight, we studied creation. I was blow away as I shared with them how God created the world. They all looked at me with broad smiles on their faces. None of them had ever heard the story from Genesis, and the excitement in their eyes made my heart sing. I was so humbled to share with them for the first time what an awesome Creator God we have. A God who loves us and planned from the beginning for us to be with Him. They had some fantastic questions, and I'm so excited to continue meeting with them. Their hunger is so great, it humbles me. Please pray for this small group as they grow and learn more about things we take for granted. One woman can't read and the language situation makes it interesting, but their enthusiasm makes up for any communication problems we might have!

Blessings!

Lisa

Monday, May 08, 2006

SOUTH AFRICA'S BEAUTY. . .

I'm always amazed at the varied beauty of this country. From tropical palms, to desert winds, to grasslands, to snowcapped mountains. Here's a few highlights from our trip to the mountains and a bit of the stunning views we were able to see. After miles and miles of traveling through the bush, Scott's parents really enjoyed a taste of the mountains and a bit of down time.

Enjoy!

Lisa





FREE BOOK. . .

Check out my good friend Lena Dooley's blogspot for a chance to win a free copy of my latest book, REBECCA'S HEART. Lena did a great interview of me and my writing, and I think you'll really enjoy her site as well!

Go to www.lenanelsondooley.blogspot.com or click on the link to the right for Lena's Blog.

Blessings,

Lisa

Sunday, May 07, 2006

HOME AGAIN. . .

We took Scott's parents to the mountains for a few days for a much-needed rest, though I always find that a holiday usually leaves me more tired than our regular schedule. :-) The setting was stunning, and we enjoyed just being together as a family. I've had trouble posting pictures this weekend, so will try and get some up later this week as the fall colors were so beautiful. We even saw a bit of snow.

Scott preached today at a small congregation about forty minutes from our house. It was a very powerful lesson from the book of Esther that spoke to both of us. Lately, we’ve both been tired, both physically and emotionally, yet we were reminded of how God has called us to be here. He has a purpose for each one of our lives and we are called to be faithful to Him. It’s easy to get distracted by physical things, but knowing that we are in a spiritual battle reminds us to stay focused on Jesus and his calling for our lives.

We're heading into a busy week. Please pray for a church planting conference Scott and Allen have put together. A number of leaders from the churches we work with in Zimbabwe, Zambia and Malawi will be arriving this week to attend as well as others from the area. Pray that this will be a time of both intense learning and encouragement for these leaders.

Scott’s parents are still enjoying their stay here. His mom will spend some time with her sister while the men are gone, and his dad is continuing on some repairs on our house. He loves fixing things and I told him he could have a full time job getting our house into shape.

More later,

Lisa