Natalie Spronk – Ministry Advocate, Full Time Volunteer
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.” – Isaiah 55:8-11
“As for God” are three words that resound in my heart and mind as I reflect on the past year and a half. I had only planned to visit the states for two months, October through December 2014; but as for God, His way is perfect, and He had other plans.
The original two month plan, advocating for partner ministry, Kwathu Children’s Home, turned into what I pray may be a lifetime of ministry. In the latter of 2013, I committed to serve onsite in Zambia, alongside Kwathu Directors, Jeanette and Agripa Phiri. I found myself in the privileged and blessed position to share love, life and faith with the precious Kwathu children, empowering and growing the future generation with the truth that they are fully accepted and fully known and that no matter what life would present to them as an obstacle or set back, Father God can take it and turn it into a testimony of His saving Grace.
Grace Klein Community has a long, stable, Christ focused partnership with Kwathu Children’s Home. Over the years, Grace Klein Community teams have traveled across the world to serve, love, and encourage the children, staff, and leadership of Kwathu Children’s Home. In January 2014, the year I “just so happened” to be in Zambia, God sent a team of 11 Grace Klein Community members to serve at the children’s home for approximately 10 days. There’s no such thing as a coincidence.
Wrecked for the ordinary. Spiritually, emotionally, physically. My heart and mind were in complete shambles the day the team departed Zambia on a flight back home. “What’s mine is yours” they said. Did they really mean that? “We love you.” They won’t when they know the real me. Surely not? The team reflected Christ in a way unbeknown to me. Their lives portrayed Him in their actions, their words displayed His compassion for His people, and His beauty was illuminated through their hearts. WRECKED. Wrecked by love. Wrecked by compassion. Wrecked by Jesus.
In what felt like a time of chaos and confusion while being ruined for His Kingdom, I cried out to the Lord, seeking direction for my life. In those moments where I felt like I was at my end, Jesus was opening the pages of a brand new story. “Bambelela” He told me. “Hold on.” God birthed something new in my heart that day, and nine months later I found myself on a flight to the United States, on behalf of Kwathu Children’s Home, to serve with Grace Klein Community. As for God, His way is perfect.
As the original two months of my stay in the states began drawing to a close, God spoke loud and clear to two families, including myself, about remaining in the states for a longer period of time to advocate for the children’s home. As for God, His way is perfect, and He made a way.
God’s provision throughout this past year and a half is astounding. Finances are few, yet I am rich. Rich in family. Rich in friends. Rich in love. As the days, weeks, months, and years unfold, I see what seemed as unanswered prayers coming to pass. God turned my mourning into dancing. He calls me child, an heir of God. Fully known. Fully accepted.
I may be over 8,000 miles away from my home, family and friends, but I am home, I have family, and there is nothing more fulfilling than walking in the Lord’s will for your life.
“As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.” – Psalm 18:30
Today I serve as a full time volunteer with Grace Klein Community as an advocate for one of our partner ministries, Kwathu Children’s Home in Livingstone, Zambia. Every day I try to think of ways to bring a little bit of Africa and it’s culture to America, which includes speaking at schools, churches, and small groups, leading worship at community gatherings, facilitating community events, and sharing God stories and updates through social media and newsletters. My time is committed to furthering the efforts of Grace Klein Community, knowing that I’m not here for self gain, but to bring glory to God. Some weeks I work every day, from early morning to late night, and I’m committed with great joy and thankfulness to give God ALL I’ve got. As for God, His way is perfect.
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