Saturday, September 1, 2012

All you need is Marshmallows

I admit. We are marshmallow junkies. Leyana and I have explored every spectrum of marshmallows as we have traveled the globe called earth. We stick by the fact that the best ones we have EVER eaten are from the SPAR store in my Mother-in-laws town of Baslow, England. I mean that whole-heartedly. They are pink (the best) and white and there is just a particular taste to them that is impossible to replicate. Yes, I have even purchased them at art fairs, dollar stores, mall kiosks, from vending machines and of course have tried all of the spectacular flavors they come in at Meijer, a store chain in the U.S. We have tried peppermint, chocolate, green apple jelly filled, raspberry, coconut (a close second), dulce de leche, strawberry, organic, non-organic, kosher, halaal, homemade, and even we have stooped and just eaten the freeze dried version from the packet of hot chocolate mix. We are junkies I tell ya! Tonight, our junkie craze became a missions opportunity.
The power went out (I say, what's new?). We sat in the dining room and to candlelight we both went about our tasks. Then we heard our outside water tap turning on, running, turning off. Finally, I got up the courage to look out the window. Much to my surprise it was Mr. Banza from two doors down. I know he has a tap on his house so I went out to investigate. He said he needed to water the garden (which is near our back yard) and so he used the closest tap. Now, see if you are from America (U.S. proper) you are thinking yeah but not on my water bill, well here, who cares! So I offered him another bucket to fill alternating them. Out of the corner of my eye I thought I saw a fire. I asked him if someone was coming from around the house and he said no, just that the neighbors had a fire pit going. Ahhh...tell me what you think of? MARSHMALLOWS! Yes, so did I. Just then I saw the little boy sticking some sticks in the fire and went to chase him away from the open flame as any good NP would do out of nerves for a burn. I say to Mr. Banza, this would be perfect for a marshmallow. After he asked me to repeat it a few times I told him I would get him one. Yes, I packed them in the carry on luggage...muhahaha! See Junkie as described above. He came over, I got him a marshmallow from the kitchen (thank you Abby Posey for leaving that extra bag at our house, your ministry continues all the way in Africa). He touched it and was amazed at the soft texture and the smush that was resilient to touch but reappeared after only a few seconds in its normal state. I then took him and a spare for myself and we headed back to the fire pit. I asked the fella inside for a fork or something to use as a fire tong. He said he would get a spoon. So, on the handle of the spoon I placed a marshmallow. I lit it on fire, slowly turning it like a rotisserie handle with chicken cooking. Then just as the coat went black I blew it out. Giving them play-by-play instructions as I cooked it. Just gooey, it was as I pulled it gently from the spoon handle and placed it in my mouth. I could almost taste America. Is that why I am a junkie? Is this my American pull? Well, needless to say, I handed the spoon over and he roasted his first marshmallow. He was pleasantly surprised with texture, taste and experience altogether. It was amazing to watch a grown adult eating his FIRST smushy hot gooey yummy marshmallow (all the while praying he enjoyed it and didn't waste it). Then I went back inside and took two more marshmallows out for the neighbors who willingly shared the open fire pit. As they ate them it was beautiful to see their eyes light up and smiles appear. YES! Go God! Another connection-language barriers can not transcend the ability of the Lord to connect fellow believers.
Our life is much like that marshmallow here. For the last few days we have felt a smush over us, then the power comes back on and we return to our normal shape and texture. Then the water returns and we look normal again. We also look at things normal when we are not being smushed. Even a marshmallow has limitations to it though and it can not withstand without often suffering a tear in the texture and perfection. It is still a marshmallow and that doesn't change the taste when it hits your mouth! I also reflected on the refiner's fire tonight as we roasted those delicious treats. The outside got quite crispy and burnt but the inside remained pure gooey goodness and the only change was the melting part. God is so wanting our experience in Africa to get a little toasty on the outside and a little bit gooey-er (or MOLDABLE/PLIABLE) on the inside. Praise Him tonight for lessons learned through the simple bag of Marshmallows. Goodnight from the warm heart of Africa, Lilongwe, Malawi.
Thanks for your love and reads!

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