November 2011 Sarah Masson Update
"I have been living in Malawi since September 2010 and I have been a full time missionary for Iris Ministries since February 2011. In that time I have been doing a variety of things. From September 2010 to May 2011 I was working at the Iris primary school as well as working as an assistant to our base Director, David Morrison.
"Since June 2011, I have been working more in the office assisting David more as he has many different demands for his time, so I have been working on reports for Iris donors, reports on projects such as the seed program, the feeding program, the vitamin program and other container donations. I am responsible for pulling the reports together with a creative edge. This kind of report allows me to do interviews, research, village visits, photography and photo documentation. These reports help our relationships with donors because they see and understand where the needs are in Southern Malawi.
"My teaching focus has now turned from the kids to the adults at Iris. I have started teaching English as a second language to adults on the base. There is a class for the pastors and house parents to learn English, which I have been teaching since June 2011. Recently I started two more classes for the workers at the base. I have begun a primary and secondary level English as a second language course for the builders, cooks, fish farm employees, gardeners, drivers, guards and general workers at the base. It's a free after work hours class that I’m excited to be offering to many who have not even completed elementary/primary school. Many did not finish school because they had to help their families at an early age to bring home money.
"Every Friday night I lead a youth night much like a youth group night in Canada. Some weeks we play games, other weeks we have worship nights or hang out nights to chat with friends and talk about God. This is a great time to see the teenagers interact with one another. They come with so much energy, as they don’t have many outlets to be themselves, so this is a night with a lot of energy and excitement.
"Some of our best youth nights have been nights when I give the youth time to make up a dance routine to share with the whole group. They are so creative and talented!
"In my spare time, I enjoy spending time in prayer and intercession for the base. I make an effort to spend time with the house parents and other young adults (teachers and office staff) who are around my age here, and although it can be difficult because of the language barrier, we always seem to have a good laugh together. I am so grateful to be blessed with their friendships in my life. It is great to just sit and enjoy each other’s presence on a mat under the tree. I also really enjoy connecting with the visitors that come to visit from all over the world. What a great time to learn from others and about different places.
"Then of course there are the times that I treasure, which are spent playing and hanging out with the kids who live on our Iris base. What a family to be part of! It is life changing to see a child who has been rejected by their community come into the Iris family. The children transform before our eyes. God knows what He is doing here and it is good!
"This past year has been one of faith for me. Not only because I have moved to a third world country, but because there are many things in my personal life that don’t make sense for me to be so far away from my home in Canada. I daily say to myself 'God knows'. He does! The number 11 has also been significant to me in my life and it reminds me of the bible verse Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” A verse about faith! Hebrews 11 lists the great forefathers of faith in the Bible. What a powerful passage in scripture. For the past 6 years I have been jumping out blind to what’s coming but trusting that my Father in heaven will provide for me. If there are so many in the Bible that God has done the same for, then He will also do the same for me. Every time I step out farther He comes through even bigger for me. “We live by faith, not by sight.” (2 Cor. 5:7). I just think that if others are living by faith, then why can’t I?
"At the conference this year in July, I was sitting on the stage and just felt like I can pray. I’m not well known, I’m just Sarah, but I can pray for people. This boldness came up in me and I went down into the crowd to pray for the women who were there; we had a great time. I prayed for one after the other and they kept falling over by the power of the Holy Spirit. I was just as surprised as my boss was! Our God has a sense of humour!
"My very good friends here had planned to move to Cambodia this past September, but my friend Daryl died a week before they were to leave. Daryl's wife, Rebekah is now living in Arizona with her two sons. Again, I’m left wondering about life and why He has me here when in the natural it seems like I would be able to do more for my friends and family if i wasn’t here. Faith in Him is what confirms that I’m meant to be here, at least until March 2013 (the end of my work permit) and possibly longer."
“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
2 Cor. 4:18
“We live by faith, not by sight.”
2 Cor. 5:7