We arrived to Lusaka enjoying the feeling of return. New visa requirements were explained as they asked about our return. Talked about church and our return without any holdups. Filled out the forms for missing bags and confidently followed Pastor Jeff Day through customs with our keyboard and speaker without paying. Things have changed.
Wednesday March 12 was Youth Day in Zambia. Jeff wanted me to preach two sermons that day. This Youth Day was different from what I remembered; instead of a youth focused get together at the church (allowing me to preach about dating) Jeff had turned it into a day of outreach with a parade topped off by music and drama that night. I preached an evangelism message as the young people formed groups (several churches had gathered including 14 from Mazabuka) to evangelize. This was followed by a meal and then we had the parade. Several trucks loaded with young people with a police escort moving through the neighborhoods around the church. I can almost remember the refrain of music that punctuated the event causing the bystanders to sway a bit with a breakout of actual dancing an ever possibility. It was nice to hear Timothy Zulu and Cornelius Monze testify and sing with the Lusaka musicians.
I took this time to walk with Pastor Tembo as we talked about how things were going in the Mazabuka church since my departure. That night Timothy a.k.a. James Tembo sang with Saul, Cornelius, Everisto and Alvah. Alvah made the big mistake of announcing that we really dance in Mazabuka: this required Jeff to come up front and inform them not to dance. It reminded me of a moment in time many years before when Jeff the Door Director was asking Scott Lamb and his band to keep the music level down in a courtyard music scene. In this case they toned it down, but Timothy was pushing it to the limit. Jeff had seen Timothy as a song leader in Mazabuka and felt he could have grace on Timothy. The young people loved it. Between Jeff seeing Timothy as a song leader, seeing him that night and later seeing him in the film “James Tembo, Detective” Timothy was actually having favor with Jeff. Jeff’s comment as I tried to apologize for them was “that’s who Timothy really is”. Afterwards I went up to Alvah and he said “Don’t say anything, I know”. It was a great night.