From our guesthouse on the outskirts of town we drove into the city of Addis Ababa to the large Beza Church. We were greeted with the typical strange looks that travelers in a foreign country get while passing through, although curious we were greeted with warmth and excitement. The church was large and full of people from all over the world. It really showed me a glimpse of what it will be like to worship God in eternity with masses of Christians from every country and ethnicity and all walks of life. Parents with their adopted children as well as locals filed in. As we found our seats the band started warming up and a mixed humming drone filled the building. Unlike most churches I have visited this worship team was huge! Two drummers, a lead guitarist, two keyboard players, a bass player, a saxophone player, three lead singers, and about ten background vocalists completed the ensemble. I knew I was in for a worship experience like never before.
A small family of five sat in front of us and I was tormented through the entire worship experience by the cutest African faces peaking up at me with the most beautiful curious eyes I have ever seen! I smiled as I realized that the three little boys were talking to me even though they were not speaking. It is something I have had to get used to during my stay in Addis. The Ethiopian people communicate with their eyebrows! They lift them to acknowledge you and they lift them to say yes! So although I couldn’t communicate in the same language with those precious kids, I could lift my eyebrows and share a smile. The worship team began to play and the African music filled the whole church. It was so fun worshiping with the congregation. It was so lively and energetic and they sang praises to God with such enthusiasm and reverence. They danced, they clapped, they lifted their hands, they shed tears, and every fiber of their bodies was engaged in worship to our Savior. It was so much fun to share in their worship and feel the Holy Spirit fill the entire place. The pastor spoke with such passion and excitement for God’s word. His message was powerful.
The pastor spoke about the amazing son-ship we share with Christ. Focusing on the courage and boldness that comes when you know who and what you are in Christ. We are truly royalty because of what God has done for us. How easy it is to forget who we are in Christ and that we carry the freedom and the boldness that is often required to share the love of Jesus with others. This message floored me and brought such a grounding strength to my soul. Sometimes is takes such courage and boldness to share our faith with others, and sometimes all it takes is a pair of eyebrows. I will be forever changed and will leave Africa so much more grounded in my faith. I will leave with a new excitement to help those in need and I will leave with a boldness that only comes from knowing who God has made me to be! Blessings
All my love,