Archive for the Revelation Category

Wrap Up: Missing Entries

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Unity, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on January 13, 2011 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

What another amazing year of ministry!  It was so busy this year I could not find the time or internet connection to blog all the wonderful testimonies and stories that I hoped to.  So to give you a quick overview of the year I am including short testimonies with photos of the stories I wanted to share.  Unfortunately, there will not be a Window Into Africa 2010.  

But instead of the Gallery I hope you are blessed by the testimonies!

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An Ebenezer Christmas

I was curious how to say Merry Christmas in the local language so I asked a few locals.  The response I received was a bit shocking.  They did not have words for this saying.  I asked why and they replied that Christmas was not a big event to them, but a foreigner’s holiday.  I asked if they celebrated the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ and they said no.  I asked if they were believers and they said yes.  So I asked them what they actually did on this day and they told me it is a day like others, just they get a holiday from work and can drink all night.

This might sound shocking to you, but here in Zambia the majority of the people profess to be Christians, while at the same time hold also 1-3 other “spiritual” beliefs and walk strongly in local tradition.  It has been a struggle I come up against time and time again when ministering the truth to the same people.  All I can do is continue to minister truth to those who will listen and are hungry and to the rest I can only pray.

With the children of Ebenezer it is a different story.  These children have been raised out of deception and fed daily huge amounts of sound biblical truth.  They are blessed to know the truth and be set free.  So I asked them what Christmas meant to them and they all replied it is the glorious day our savior was born.  They went around the room and mentioned all the blessings they had in 2010 and gave thanks to God. So this year I brought a birthday cake to the children, we lit a candle, and all of us sang happy birthday to our Jesus.  The children sang and worshiped, ate an abundance of rice, chicken, sausage, and never ending sweets, opened some gifts, and even had a dance contest. I thank God for these children and pray that one day they will be a light of truth into this dark part of the world.

 

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An Art Encounter with the Lord

The children at Ebenezer have come from such devastating backgrounds it is often hard to get them to let you in.  I have been doing prayer ministry and counseling with them and I often find that I must come up with creative ways to connect with their hearts to be able to make a difference.

I have been focusing on finding each child’s natural talents and God given gifts and encouraging them in these. One way I do this is through Art Therapy.  This past year I have given a few of the older boys art lessons and have been blessed to take them on a couple of field trips visiting art exhibitions and artists from town.

Last week I had an art contest and 4 of them tied as winner so I awarded them with a field trip to visit a local artist who, like these children, grew up in the village, was given a second chance. He made a career of his talent, even schooled in Europe and toured all around the world with his work.  He and his wife encouraged these boys, got them out of their shy shell and had them interacting in the art gallery for hours.

At the end of the day as I drove the boys’ home I asked each one how this artist helped to add something to their lives and to my surprise they all opened up and responded boldly and excited with an answer.  To summarize what they all said, they were given a message of hope this day, hope that the future can be anything they set their hearts on with determination and God’s help, no matter what their circumstance.  As I looked into my car mirror I saw the hope manifest into huge never-ending smiles on their faces.  This day added a milestone to their lives that they will always remember and I will not soon forget either.  Thank you Lord for your supernatural hope and for your creative ways of speaking to each of us.

    

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 Field Trip to Makuni Park

A field trip into town is a HUGE day for the children.  This day I was asked along with their house mom to take 17 boys to a local festival at Makuni Park and the boys had the time of their lives!  They were blessed abundantly with a jumping castle, donkey rides, playground, face painting, live music, and all new experiences that they had never had before.  They arrived home so tired they nearly collapsed. It was a God given Great Day!

  

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Special Delivery

It is 7 am. I woke up with excitement this morning.  I jumped out of bed onto the ice cold floor, quickly ran to my closet and grabbed several layers of clothing and tossed them on, brushed my teeth in a mad dash and was out the door.

I drove down the concrete road until it turned into dirt, lined with rock and multiple ditches.  I carried on the bumpy path until I crossed the railroad tracks and entered the compound.  I turned down a road and watched as all the little children ran out barefoot on the road, pointing and screaming “Mazungu”, the local word meaning white man, a novelty around here.  I pulled up under the giant boabab tree and turned off my car. Instantly I am surrounded by children covered in dirt, clothes in tatters, and no shoes on anyone’s feet.  I walk forward with my escort into a yard with a small mud hut and concrete two room house.

There has been a funeral two days ago.  Now the family from far away villages park themselves at this relative’s house and become “home” until they can obtain enough money to get back to where they come from.  One lady is washing dishes in a bucket, while 10 children sit around a fire for the only warmth they have.  An elderly male sits in a large chair off to the side overlooking the entire scene.

Peter rushes to greet me.  He hurries me past the multitudes of his extended family along with the six children of his own and into the concrete house.  His wife emerges with a bundle wrapped in what looks like 10 blankets.  “Is something in there?” I ask.  She laughs and hands me the baby.  All I can see are tiny little eyes peeking out at me.  With complete chaos around me he rushes me back to my car.

I stop and ask him where the other two children are.  He calls them from out of nowhere.  Covered head to toe in dirt, bellies extended form malnutrition, two little girls walk out and gaze up at me.  They have never known their father and have  just lost their mother, Peter’s sister, to AIDS.  Peter tells me they are only 2 and 5 years old.  I greet them as they remain silent and watch them quietly walk away to blend into the small tribe of other children.

We arrive to Ebenezer Childrens village and are greeted by two very excited house mothers waiting at the door with open arms.  They unwrap the little bundle to see that her skin just sags from her tiny one month old body.  The only nourishment she had was from her mothers breast as the mother lie in a coma before dying three days ago.  The house mothers clean the baby up and prepare a bottle.  They ask me her name.  “Toomba”, I reply and they just look at one another in silence.  Toomba in the native language of Tonga means Owl, a witchcraft curse among the locals.  Mrs. Chara arrives and immediately renames her “Malaika” meaning Angel.

The children gathered outside the baby room door.  They stood quietly as one whispered, “Can we see her?”  They all gathered around for the new arrival, excited as the first baby marks the beginning of an abundant new chapter in the Ebenezer Village.

A short while later Ebenezer received Malaika’s two sisters, so the family can be a family once again.

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Baking Day

One of my favorite times as a child was baking in the kitchen with mom.  The memories and life skills I got from that magical time stays with me always.  I am blessed to pass this experience on to several very eager children at Ebenezer.  I surprise the children with a new recipe, new ingredients they have never used or even heard of before, and the moto, “A good kitchen is a clean kitchen”.  Once their hands are all cleaned and ingredients layed out on the table we pass them around, sniff them, learn some cool things about them, then the baking begins with lots of hands ready and willing to make as big of a mess to clean as they can!

 

  

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Blog Design

Ebenezer Child Care Trust Livingstone

“A place of restoration for broken lives, and a haven of rest to the weary children experiencing tragedy at a young age.”

I have spent many excited hours, days, and weeks working on a blog for Ebenezer.  It is finally here, please check it out and see the Amazing work and miracles the Lord is doing in this place!

PLEASE CLICK HERE:www.ecct.wordpress.com

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Birthday Party

Can you remember the excitement of celebrating your birthday as a child?  Maybe you still feel that childlike enthusiasm coming on when your day is right around the corner. I know I do.  The children at Ebenezer have a different memory of their birhthday.  It was not a time that was celebrated.  For most of them it was a time they actually numbed out. These children come from some of the most neglected and abused homes in Zambia.  They never experienced what it was like to have someone rejoice in their birth and over their life.  Ebenezer pours the truth of the word of God into their lives and tries to restore that which was taken from them or never given. Birthday celebrations are just one way to restore to them just how celebrated their lives really are, to us, each other, and to our Father in heaven.

  

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Ele Rescue

The boat landed on the island with about an hour of daylight left. 15 of us emerged and began to scope out the sky for the helicopter. Heiko flew over in his Mircolight and sent an emergency message to our ground crew via the walkie talkie. A herd of elephant were coming our way and would be in front of us within only minutes if we didn’t move quickly. We rushed back onto the boat and went further down the island. As we hit the shore the helicopter flew over us signaling our direction to follow. Suddenly the Heli landed and we took off running towards it. My camera equipment hung around my neck nearly choking me as I arrived breathless at the scene.

 

There he was, 500 pounds of orphaned baby elephant. The vet managed to dart him with a sedative from the air giving us a window of less than an hour to tackle thislittle guy to the ground, create a make shift carrier, and transport him onto the boat so we could get him safe into the enclosure in the national park until he could be transported to the elephant sanctuary.

You never realize how much a baby ele can weigh until you have to carry one a quarter of a mile. The physical exhaustion of the team was tremendous by the time they managed to lift him onto the boat. The vet checked his vital signs, took blood samples and determined he must be only about a year old if that, and extremely malnourished. For some unknown reason his herd left him behind on the island.  

     

It was Heiko who first discovered the little guy while flying over the island with his passengers. For two weeks he kept seeing this little one and another slightly larger one all alone. He knew that once the waters raised these little guys would have little chance to survive on their own. He made a few phone calls to elephant orphanages and stumbled upon Kafue Park Ele Rescue. Within only a day they were here and managed to arrange for a team to help. I was honored to be asked to photograph the event, I was ecstatic actually.

Day one, Rescue number one, was a complete success!

It was fantastic preparation for the second rescue…

This time the ele was darted in the middle of a marsh. We began to run toward the ele when one of the team members, only two feet in front of me, fell into the quicksand-like marsh up to his chest. We managed to pull him out and carried on after the ele cautiously over the labyrinth of sponge like grass covering the muck beneath it.

When we arrived to the ele he was already down. The team made a carrier and began the trek across the marsh. This ele was heavier than the last and the team could walk only a few feet before laying him down again. The treacherous terrain did not help and time was burning fast as his sedative was wearing off.

 

 We managed to get him on the boat and to the shelter just in time for him to wake up and begin charging the walls of his enclosure.

 

What an exciting week!

As I sat on the boat with both of the eles I got to touch their skin, feel their tongue with my finger, rub their toes and ever so rough skin of their feet, feel the wire like hair of their tales, play with their jumbo ears and see the blood flow in the veins. The Lord reminded me that all creatures, great and small, have been created by His hand and for a purpose. What a miraculous design that once again points to the master artist and grand creator of all, so that when man marvels upon it he can say, “Only God!”

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Graduation Glory!

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Unity, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on May 17, 2010 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

Exciting news…

 I just graduated from Southeastern University!!!!

Only one month after I was saved in my home church, Christ Church of Orlando, I told Pastor Paul I knew my purpose in life: the Lord had showed me in a vision that I was to be a missionary in Africa!

He paused, encouraged me, and then told me that I needed to go to Bible College first. I remember in an instant my heart felt heavy. I was thinking how on earth could I go back to school after being out for nearly a decade? I was 27 years old and long gave up on the idea of college. I wondered how I could possibly wait four years to finish a degree before going to Africa to fulfill the purpose God created me for. In the naivety of the newness of my walk, I thought I was fully ready to go the next day and help save the world if I could.

Pastor quickly told me Southeastern was a great school, so I decided that if that’s what it takes to get me to Africa I better hurry up and enroll. That’s what I did, the very next day!

That was four and half years ago. Looking back, it was one of the best times of my life and biggest times of growth in my spiritual walk! I completed two of the greatest years on campus and then finished my degree online as I traveled through Africa on the mission field. I was warned by the many wonderful professors at the University that it would be extra hard trying to keep up with school while working full time on the mission field. They even tried to convince me to hold off until I graduated, but my call was so strong and in faith I told them I was going to do it for the Lord and work the hardest I could to graduate at the top of my class and contribute all the praise to Jesus.

That is exactly what I did. I have graduated with an overall 3.7 GPA. The professors were right, it was the hardest thing to do, but with Christ’s strength in me, I did it!

On Saturday, May 1st, 2010, I graduate! While my classmates gather in Victory Church, Lakeland, Florida, I am at the heights of the Victoria Falls where the statue of the great missionary David Livingstone overlooks this natural wonder. I am throwing my cap into the spray of the Falls with exuberant joy! I had just completed this exciting chapter of my life in the midst of my hearts desire, in the middle of my life’s purpose, sharing this dream with my husband who is just as excited as I am. 

With the rush of the mighty Zambezi water flowing over the falls every second of every day since the beginning of creation, not one drop of water is ever the same. God hand crafted each and every tiny little detail of our lives such as this, with the greatest pleasure. I stand overwhelmed by this magnitude of raw beauty and stealth power. I realize that like each drop of water going over and never returning, my life has also been. Daily the old is fading away to make space for the new transformation of my life.

The day I was saved in my church November 25th, 2005, I understood that my life was not my own. Jesus had placed in me the passions and desires of my heart that He had created me to experience. The love of Christ flooded me and gloriously wrecked me once and for all. I promised Him I would go any where He would lead me and I would never leave His side. I came in faith to Africa to serve my beautiful Jesus and be His love to this nation, but at the same time, He was wooing me even closer to Him…

And this glorious day, my graduation day, I am reminded that the best is still to come. As this chapter closes and a brand new chapter opens I wait in joyful expectation. So I say, “Father, I will continue to walk in reckless faith, for in deeper understanding of you, your love just keeps getting better!”

Protected: 2009 Recap: Giving God All the Glory

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Unity, Unreached People on February 9, 2010 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

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Seasons Greetings: In the Presence of Angels!

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Unity, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on December 15, 2009 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

 Merry Christmas!

Love,
Heiko & Anita

 

In the Presence of Angels
by Heiko Held 

Heb 12.22… you have come to thousands of angels in joyful assembly. 

I am in the midst of 300 angels…they are children, in prayer, their eyes closed, but their hearts wide open, thanking and praising God  for what He has done in their lives.

And just in front of me, a little girl 6 years old , her hands raised high into the sky;  even standing on her tip toes, to reach higher – her little hands turned upwards – touching Gods heart!!

It is the Christmas party of the Ebenezer school, and these angels were earlier singing and celebrating the birth of our Savior in a Christmas play ….Many of them are orphans, neglected or abused in their homes, but here at the Ebenezer school they can experience the tangible love of God…while their little hearts are reflecting Gods love back to Him… All for His Glory!

The Lord takes pleasure in His people. Ps 149.4a

Miracles of Healing

Posted in Africa, Healing, Love, Miracles, Missions, Revelation, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on June 3, 2009 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

Easter Miracle

DSC04450Victory! On Easter Sunday Jesus arose from the dead and showed the disciples that He had conquered.  He took upon all sickness, disease, suffering, poverty, and every other bondage, replacing it with complete freedom and eternal life. Later He ascended into heaven and sent His Holy Spirit to dwell inside every believer. This is the Spirit of God that breathed all life into existence. God spoke and created the heavens and the earth with the power of His word. His same Spirit and power lives in us and He even gave us a user manual to guide us along…

With that being said, it astonishes me how the enemy can trick us to believe we are still sick, weak and powerless prey. It happened to me.

Three months ago I was diagnosed with precancerous cells in my cervix along with discovering I had lumps in my breasts. I had even lost 15 pounds unexplainably over the past 6 months. Immediately the enemy went to work in my mind. I became depressed, the “what if” questions wouldn’t stop buzzing in my head, I felt hopeless and scared. It is probably one of the worst moments in a woman’s life to face. And here I was in the middle of Africa facing it.

Medical care in a third world country is not an option one wants for a condition as this. Heiko and I prayed as I went through the daily emotions of the unknown. We researched doctors who wanted to fly me into the nearest country with surgical facilities and cut into me and test what they found and send me on my way in a matter of days. That is just how things are done in this part of the world where care is limited to what is available. You must take what you can get here. With limited health insurance in Africa I was stuck to options here, so all the missionaries in town and my church and family back home began to pray for me.

Revelation 2On Easter Sunday Heiko began to pray for me. I closed my eyes and asked Jesus why this had to happen to me. I suddenly had a vision. I saw Jesus put His hand on my stomach and a beautiful warm light flooded my body. He spoke to me and said, “My daughter your faith has healed you.” I woke up from the vision and could not move. I remember thinking, my faith? I have doubted for two months in despair. Then the Lord reminded me, it was by faith that I received Him and through Him I received His Spirit, the same spirit that breathed life into existence. And within me all sickness was already conquered on the cross. All I need to do is receive what is already given to me, within me and speak the power of the word over me. 
I Am already healed!

That week I was so excited I went around testifying to all the missionaries and friends that I AM healed! I could not wait to go to a doctor for confirmation. Within days I began to feel better and gain some weight. I spoke the power of the truth over myself that I AM healed, Christ did it all! I miraculously stumbled upon a breast surgeon in South Africa who won woman of the year for her contributions to breast cancer awareness and new medical discoveries. She had opened three breast clinics in SA and worked 6 days a week 8am-8pm dedicated to her patients. I phoned her private practice and she said she could get me in. Even more of a miracle, my Insurance approved it! Within one week Heiko and I were on a plane and excited for the good news to come.

IMG_3661It was the best trip ever! South Africa is not known for its safety, but the area we were in was beautiful. The hotel was good, friendly, and in a blocks distance drive to the hospital. The Hospital was better than I had ever imagined for Africa! The care of the doctors was tremendous and compassionate; I wasn’t just another patient taking up time. I told the doctor I was there to confirm the Lord had healed me. She said praise the Lord and did her exam. She scheduled me for 3 doctors, an ultrasound and lab work all in 3 days. Each doctor was wonderful to me and at the end of it all I was diagnosed without any cutting and with NO cancer anywhere!!! Even the cancer cells in my cervix were completely gone!!!

We arrived home like two kids in a candy store. We were so excited to confirm to everyone the too good to be true news! It was like we had a new beginning again and the enemy had been reminded he was already defeated by the beautiful resurrection power of Christ! Praise God for His mighty love and power that lives in us!

May each of you be encouraged to begin claiming what is yours in Christ Jesus. Begin declaring and speaking it over yourself daily until you see it manifest. We have the same spirit living in us that spoke all of creation into existence. We must have faith in the word and speak life and the promises of God over ourselves, especially when the enemy tries to deceive us with despair. We must use this power given to us by our heavenly Father so the enemy can be reminded he has already been defeated and has no power over us anymore. Stand strong fellow warriors of light and speak the living word into being and watch as the Lord prepares the way to your victory…

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Hope Multiplied By 15…………………………Window Into Africa 2008!

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Uncategorized, Unity, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on March 30, 2009 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

 Greetings from Zambia!!!

In a time like today people all around the world are faced with the question, “will I still have enough?”…

Can you imagine standing in front of completely empty shelves at the grocery store??

That’s what is happening here right now..

The cost of the remaining food is sky rocketing and there are numerous Zimbabweans lining up at our grocery stores buying out entire shelves of food because they don’t have any food or clean water in their country, just trying to survive.  Meanwhile here all major income sectors, mining, hunting, and tourism have decreased dramatically causing businesses to close daily.  While employed, one employee’s income feeds a total of 15 people in their extended family, now he needs hope multiplied by 15!

 More than ever people need the too-good-to-be-true news of the gospel!  

In times like this we have to keep the eyes of our hearts focused on the finished work of Cross, remembering that we are Christ’s hands and feet that He sent to reach out to those who are in need.    

For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’… “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’   Matthew 25:35-36 & 40

We are prayerfully thankful for all of the supporters back in the states who faithfully give offerings to us monthly.  Your faithfulness allows us to continue to spread the gospel here in Zambia and bring hope in a time when it is needed more than ever!


Here is the link to my 2008 Window Into Africa photo gallery. May you be abundantly blessed as you view the lives you helped us to reach in 2008 with your prayers, financial support, and faithfulness

Window Into Africa 2008

God Bless,

Heiko & Anita In Africa

 

How Great Is The Love The Father Has Lavished On Us…1 John 3:1

Posted in Adventure, Africa, Healing, Jesus, Journey, Love, Miracles, Missions, Photography, Revelation, Travel, Unity, Unreached People, Visions and Dreams on December 12, 2008 by Heiko & Anita in Africa

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Heiko Oliver Held & Anita Marie Phelps
Married on 26th of November, 2008
Livingstone Island, Zambia

 

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How do you explain?

How do you describe?

A love that goes from east to west

And runs as deep as it is wide?

 

You know all our hopes.

Lord you know all our fears.

And words can not express the love we feel,

But we long for you…to hear.

 

So listen to our hearts

And hear our spirits sing.

A song of praise

From those you have redeemed.

 

We will use the words we know

To tell you what an awesome God you are.

But words are not enough

To tell you of our love.

So listen to our hearts…

 

If words can fall like rain

From these lips of mine.

If I have a thousand years

I will still run out of time

 

So if You listen to my heart,

Every beat will say,

Thank you for the life,

Thank you for the truth,

Thank you for the way.
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The Kiss
 By Heiko Oliver Held

My whole world is reduced to one kiss…
I am kissing the bride.

I have only one sense remaining – the glorious feeling – of her lips on mine,

soft, very gentle, yet demanding, hoping.

 

The darkness behind my closed eyes is complete. Only feeling remains. Her body close to mine, her arms around me.

We are holding on to each other tight – very close from the edge where the Zambezi river usually drops with great thunder into the Batoka gorge.

 

We are on Livingstone Island, called so in honour of his name, yet no water surrounding it now in this November.

Eleven days (and 103 years..) later after David Livingstone arrived and spoke his magnificent words:  “.. as beautiful as flying angels, looking into heaven.”

I truly am  – right now in heaven here on earth.

Because my whole world is reduced to: The only sensual feeling of this kiss.

Time fades, nothing else matters. My being, my whole self is reduced to – nothing.

Just then my bride hears Gods voice in her heart, saying “everything!” , and all I feel is her lips gently removing from mine, uttering softly only one word: “everything”.

 

And in my rejoicing heart the eternal equation of life unfolds:

 

Jesus plus my nothing equals everything!

 

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Wedding Day Video coming soon!