A letter from Kay Day in Rwanda
Dear Friends and Family,
Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us (Eph. 3:20 NKJV).
Anyone who knows me as a worship leader knows that is my favorite blessing. I close many of the worship services I lead with this blessing. I believe it and I have witnessed it this past month in a number of powerful ways.
The small congregation I serve is comprised mainly of students of PIASS. They are the elders and deacons as well as the members. The elders’ council planned a farewell for the graduating students but needed to raise the funds to hold the function. Their budget was ambitious and, honestly, I had doubts as to the ability to raise the funds from the students’ meager resources. I underwrote a large portion as part of my personal giving, but there was still a sum to raise. We decided to hold a fund-raiser after church. One of my colleagues agreed to be the auctioneer. Items were donated for sale. On the day of the fund-raiser, two folks attended worship who are not members. They fully joined in the fun of the auction, along with the students. The bids rose 1,000 RFs (about $1.30) at a time on candy, homemade cookies, a necklace, rice, a pumpkin. There was laughter and competition. A Rwandan auction practice is to help someone up his bid by adding on to it, 500 or 1,000 RF at a time, supporting where you could not buy yourself. That is part of the fun and also enables those with little money to participate. This happened with delight. At the end of the auction we tallied the sales and to my amazement we exceeded our goal! God had taken the little bits and multiplied them to what we needed to say farewell to our graduating students. God did exceedingly abundantly above what we asked.
As I reflected on God’s provision for our small fund-raising and the delight it brought, I realized that God has done much more than meet our need for money. He has ministered to my heart at the deepest level through this tiny congregation. When I left Malawi I left a part of my heart and I wondered if I could ever give my heart completely again. I wanted to. I said I would, but I was cautious. I’ve given myself to the work here and worked to learn about the people and the customs. In serving this congregation I have gotten involved in people’s lives. Beyond fund-raising, I’ve rejoiced with new mothers at the birth of their babies, I’ve prayed with someone before he went to see his dying mother. I’ve encouraged some in family struggles and met extended family members in the process. The students feel free to come to my home at any time with concerns. The door is open. I have been in their homes as well, here and in the villages. We’ve planned and discussed at elders’ meetings and prayed and praised together in worship services. All of these are normal pastoral activities. This is what is expected of the pastor. But the amazing reality for me is that in doing these things, God has restored my heart. He has given me a love for these folks that matches anything I felt as I pastored in Malawi. Maybe it is because I live with the students and am a part of their community, as well as the pastor, maybe it is their openness to come and go in my home for prayer and counsel, or maybe it is all of this and God’s power to do more than we can imagine. What I know is that God has done exceedingly, abundantly above what I could have asked or imagined. In the process of serving him, he has restored my heart fully and for that I praise him.
I thank you that you have been a part of this with me as you have supported me in prayer, in finances, in encouragement. Thank you for partnering with me on this journey. My prayer is that God continues to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we could ask or even imagine. I invite you to continue to partner with me in ministry with your financial and prayer support, with your correspondence and sharing of yourselves with the faithful in Rwanda. Together we can see what things our awesome God will do to lead us into new areas of trusting and of giving of ourselves that will go exceeding beyond what we could ask or even imagine. Will you join me in trusting God in these ways?
Yours in love,
Kay (Cathie to the family)
Dear Cindy, I'm late in sending birthday greetings to you. Maybe like me you celebrate a birthday week! I am thankful for you and for the God who gave you life and a heart for the work you do. May you be encouraged each day. Peace be with you, in the name of the Prince of Peace.