Hey all, its Ashton! I have traveled all the way from the good ol’ Hoosier state to participate in this inventive, challenging, and purposeful summer internship program. Zambia, in case you were unaware, is quite different from my small hometown of Greenwood, Indiana. I am clearly in a new continent, new country, and new hemisphere but I have never felt more at home. I came to Zambia with one younger sister but I am happy to boast in that I now have 19 new siblings I get to call all my own. In short, I have some amazing new African brothers and sisters and I, their Mukuwa. I am 21 years of age and will happily turn 22 this coming August. I am currently a senior at Indiana Wesleyan University and hope to finish my bachelors of science, in Global Ministry, this coming year. I am blessed beyond belief to be serving in Choma for the course of my entire summer. I cannot boast more in the Lord’s graces and provision.
This internship is jam-packed with so many unique ministry opportunities. I am given the ability to go out into the local community and meet with families surrounding our base. Every Monday we are blessed to serve the same family, grow in relationship, and fellowship while learning how to combat our cultural differences. However, when it pertains to the Kingdom of God there is much less cultural challenges because “Kingdom of God culture” is its own unique cultural platform. However, after we travel through the communities on Monday we get to prepare for our ministries assignments and community night on Tuesdays. My two favorite nights of the week are community night and then Kids Club on Wednesdays. Every aspect of this internship is beautifully crafted but there is something so wonderful about bringing the local community to our home base and fellowshipping with one another through worship.
One of the moments on this internship that stuck out to me greatly happened the third week here. I had the opportunity to lead a children’s bible study for one of our “impromptu” kids clubs. We held two community nights back-to-back and we had a huge number of kids come to play and learn. I met a young boy in the community of Mpona and he followed me back to the base. I was able to hold him for 2.5 hours and lead a bible study while he slept in my arms. I had never felt a call to become a teacher until I began this internship. The Lord is constantly placing me in opportunities to be challenged deeper. However, the biggest impact thus far would have to be the way the Zambian people love. I have never been more encouraged by a group of people and I truly feel as if I am learning to love in a real, pure, and Godly way. I am truly learning how to let people love me and better love others.
This summer is about to be a huge summer of renewal. The Lord is writing his purpose so strongly on my heart and encouraging me to live a creative, free, and powerful dream. I am beyond blessed to be learning how to love from the people that genuinely love the best.
|ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Ashton Newman • 2017 International Immersion Intern