I am so excited to get back to NY to see my family and friends, but leaving Zambia brings a great deal of sadness. The hardest part about leaving Zambia is having to say goodbye to people who have become so important to me. Here are a few of the people I have met in Zambia that have become so dear to me.

Every child we met at the orphanage was absolutely beautiful and such a gift from God, but as you can probably tell from my other posts, one of them has completely stolen my heart. Meeting Jonathan has changed my life and I pray that our paths will cross again…and again, and again.

I had the privilege of working with many wonderful people on the World Hope Zambia staff. One of those people is my good friend Chuma. Chuma and I got to spend quite a bit of time together playing music, talking music, and he even taught me a few worship songs in Tonga. I hope we get many more of these times in the future.

I am always amazed at how music brings people together. Shortly after I got to Zambia I was told that I needed to meet Richman, a fellow guitar player. Since then, Richman and I have become very good friends and have worked together at: HopeFest, Never the Same Camp, and the Choma Music Adacemy. I look forward to continuing to partner with Richman.

Our local grocery store in Choma is called Spar. Over the last 7-8 months I have become good friends with Luchen who runs the produce department. Luchen always greeted me with a huge smile, a handshake, a laugh, and a great conversation.

When we got to Choma we heard about a place called Wonderbake where we could buy bread. We visited Wonderbake regularly, but rarely for bread. Erin went for the cappuccino and I went for the ice cream. During our visits we became great friends with Anthony who would always teach us a little more Tonga and have a good laugh when I would completely butcher it.

Every time we took a group to Victoria Falls I would get to spend some time getting to know all the shop owners. Two of the guys who I developed great friendships with were Richard (pictured with his son) and Joseph. Getting to see the falls once again was always exciting, but what became increasingly more important to me was getting a chance to reconnect with my friends.

So tomorrow when we fly out, there will be a real sense of sadness as we leave Zambia, but we know that we are leaving so much richer for being here and with some incredible new friendships.

“Having so fond an affection for you, we were well-pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God but also our own lives, because you had become very dear to us.” (1 Thessalonians 2:8)

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