Not Taylor Swift

This morning you will wake up to tweets about “postpartum Taylor Swift disorder” and news about how Kim Kardashian is the hottest mom on the planet.

I want to tell you about someone you won’t see in your Facebook newsfeed, or on the Today Show.

This is one of my new friends who lives in a slum in Lusaka, Zambia.  Her name is Faith and she wears it well.

Faith-1

Her husband is a pastor. She helps him with the ministry, and cares for six children.  And so that they can make ends meet, she raises chickens in her house.

200 chickens inside her house.  Because she can’t afford to build an outdoor coop.

Now, this poses a couple of problems. First of all, it’s illegal to raise chickens inside because it’s a health hazard and if the police find out, the chickens will be confiscated.

Second, chickens need good ventilation or they die.  Ventilation without air conditioning, in a small hut in 97 degree heat is no easy feat.

In addition, I wonder things like, how do you sleep with all the chicken noises, not to mention the chicken smells?  How do you clean? It’s not like Faith has a Swiffer or a vacuum cleaner, or even a dust-buster.

Today at the little retreat for pastors wife’s we ate some of her chickens for lunch.  This is where they were cooked.photo-20

She asked me if I liked her chicken.  She says she prays over them 🙂

Never once did I hear her complain about chickens in her house, or having too little money or too many kids, or not having an oven.

I did hear her sing praises in the Bemba language – belting them out in rich, effortless harmony.

God is with us.

He has saved us.

He is mighty.

He is good…

I never heard her talk about what she didn’t have.

She talked about what she did have – dreams and a plan and faith.

We told her about the possibility of being part of a loan group through World Vision, so she went home and wrote up a proposal.

She wants to get a loan so she can build a large outdoor chicken coop.  With that her family will be healthier, and the chickens will be healthier.  She can raise more, make more money, and pay back the loan.

With what she earns, she wants to go to school to learn to be a tailor in addition to her chicken business.

No one will ever know about Faith unless I tell you.  So today, along with all the stories you’ll read, you should know that a woman named Faith is striving in a corner of a slum in Zambia, trusting the God of Hagar – “the God who sees me” – to see her and her dreams.*

And whatever corner of the world you’re in, whether you have chickens in your house or not, He sees you too.

*Genesis 16:13

 

2 Comments

  1. Oh how my heart breaks… I’m in tears. I have to admit my stomach turned thinking about eating that chicken :-/ But the selflessness she has to share her food warms my heart. I mean… I do think Kim K is outwardly beautiful and I loved Taylor as a country singer (and actually love her pop music just as well!) However… when I think of meeting my Abba Father face to face, I want him to embrace me and say “Theresa, you have used the gifts I gave you for the Glory of me and my Father; well done, good and faithful servant.” And I’m sure that when Faith enters through the gates of Heaven the Lord will embrace her and commend her faithfulness. SHE IS A BEAUTIFUL mother and her songs of praise, excites the angels in heaven as they sing along with her. What a wonderful reminder that we are special in our father’s eyes..and all He wants is our hearts, minds, strength. Who needs fashion and country music when we have much work to do for the Glory of the King before we head ‘home’! Thank you for sharing… Question… Is there any way we can help with the coop?

    • Thanks so much Theresa! Faith truly is an amazing, resilient, resourceful woman. If it was me I’d probably be curled up in the fetal position, but she perseveres!

      I think what will give her most dignity is to connect her with the loan resource. She was very excited about that. And think…if she gets a loan, she can hire one or two people from her community (where the unemployment rate is through the roof) to build the coop, and if she grows her business she can employ more people.

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