Saturday, January 10, 2009

Mulishani!...that's hello in Bemba

So I’ve been working hard at learning some Bemba (the main local language around here). I think all the workers have a good time trying to teach me how to say new words. I usually learn a new word, then I go practice it on another worker, then they respond to what I said in Bemba, then they laugh because I obviously don’t know what to say after that. Every time I try using Bemba, they all laugh. It’s partially because I sometimes butcher the words, but even when I get it right they laugh just because it’s funny to here me say it. The other day we were using the truck to transport dirt (we load and unload with shovels…it’s a lot of hard work). While driving on the site, I got stuck in some mud, so a bunch of the guys helped to push me out. After I was free I got out of the truck and yelled to all the workers, “mwashibukeni!” I thought I was saying “good work,” but I actually said “good morning!” (Mwabomba bwino is good work). They all laughed, then eventually one of them told me the mistake I made…it was pretty funny. But that was on Monday, I’ve come a long way with my Bemba since then.

Working with all the guys is going really well, I’ve now learned all their names. I would go around the site trying to say every one’s name, and I finally got them all right. I’ve been continuing to get to know each of them more and more, so it’s been great. Next week I’m going home with my friend Goshen after work and he’s teaching me how to make Nshima, which is the staple food around here, they eat it every day. I’m also planning on starting either a Bible study or a morning devotional a couple times a week at the job site with anyone who wants to participate. I plan on starting this week, but I still need to think it through a little first.

The progress on construction was a little slower this week because we’ve been getting too much rain. But although we don’t want rain, there are many people here who need it for their crops… so I’d rather be slowed down a little while they get the rain they need. We still need to fill in some of the foundations in order to lay the concrete in some parts. In other parts the concrete is laid and it’s pretty cool to see the walls going up. We’re also going to start on the roof for one of the buildings this week.

This weekend we came to Lusaka to pick up two more guys from Cornerstone Church. I’m really excited about it because with the extra help on construction, I’ll be freed up to do some more ministry stuff with Novice, local churches, orphans, etc. Plus, I always enjoy meeting new people. Thanks for your prayers and support! I hope all is going well in Omaha, I miss you all.

Special Tribe Note: Hey guys! I was so jealous that you got to start Tribe up again the other day without me. Tribe is honestly one of the things I miss the most! The other day I wasn’t feeling well, so I went and sat in the van by myself and read all your “Tribe Heart’s Jack” cards to cheer myself up. That was the second time I’ve read through them all, and they were just as great, so thanks again for those. Anyways, I’m really excited about Experience Night next week, it sounds like its ganna be awesome, I hope you get a lot out of it (you should take notes!). Miss you!

PRAYER REQUESTS: For me as I start up this Bible study with the workers, that I would know how to lead it well, and they would engage in it…for the progress of construction to keep moving forward efficiently…for my attitude, that I would be positive, compassionate, and humble…for all the relationships I’ve been making, that we would impact each other’s lives. (Never prayed before? It doesn’t hurt to just try).


  1. DUDE!! i can not wait to learn som Bemba when you get back!! It's great hearing the stories of the things you're experiencing!! i'm watching Seinfeld right now AND it's the episode with John Voiet in it. It's funny.. and i think about watching this with you... "ah i made myself sad..." (futerama for those who don't know).i think my computer is going to explode... gotta go!!

  2. Praise God for what you are doing! I just saw this site looking for how to speak Bemba. I pray God's grace for you to fully complete your calling and mission there. What ministry if any are you connected to with this endeavor?

    Atlanta, GA

  3. Hey great post I hope that you enjoyed your time in Zambia. Your blog gives a taste of your trip. I know your hearts will be forever changed for having gone.
    Here is a site that will help you learn some words in Bemba:

    Hope it helps.