Click abouve to see many pictures uploaded to a website thanks to our friend Marshall living in Maputo. He was an instrumental part of some of the contacts with teams we played.
If you are familiar with the story of Caleb and Joshua in the Bible you might understand that we faced this story in many ways. Caleb and Joshua were the two spies that had faith out of the twelve sent to check out the “promised land” as the Israelites were coming out of their long testing in the desert. They saw the land and the Giants of the land and believed that through God they could take the land. Well there are many giants in Mozambique. Campus Crusade has infact labeled their vision “The Caleb Project” (hopefully I can share with you at another time). The giants include the HIV or Aids virus which is prominent amongst the country. extreme poverty, crime, orhpans and many more. We were confronted this situation and have been sent by God and prayerfully covered by you and thousands of others joined in prayer throughout Mozambique and South Africa to offer hope and make a difference.
Our first with the flood of media we said that we believe one of the solutions to these giants is empowering the athletes in the country particularly the basketball players to use their influence for Jesus Christ and to pour back into the communties. This was a well received and new concept. The teams we have played against have accepted our challenge to have a relationship with Jesus Christ and use their talents and other talents to pour back into this awesome country.
With an exception of playing the three time defending national champs we have done very well on the court and we are probably only a Div II skill level basketball team. However our clinics and game play has provided a platform of love and truth to challenge the people of Maputo and Matula in Mozambique to seek God to overcome many of these Giants in the Land. There city is so run down and humbled that they are in a great position to receive the truth and transformation that Jesus can bring to a community and a country.
As a team we did face the Giants of Mozambique at the “Basket Show”. Let me describe this crazy Mozambique thing. A basket show is like a glorified high school dance with basketball in the center. There were 5-6,000 fans and over 3-4 million viewers live on national television. There were about 5-6 games that went only 2 quarters of competition, then a halftime dance group would perform and then the teams would split up and play against each other for the 3rd and final quarter. It was extreme chaos! Well we didn’t shoot well and got worked the first quarter then we had the post 1st quarter show at half court and we taught 5,000 fans to sing a Zulu worship song that we learned in South Africa and they sang it with us. They went nuts! So God is very creative. After the game we were able to share with the Mozambique National team and challenge them with a relationship with Jesus Christ and to use the influence to transform the community.
Check out the crowd going nuts as their national team takes an early lead
Our NJalo Worship Song
….fastforwarding like 4 days. The last night we were exhausted, played on dangerous conditions in the ghetto of matula, with bad refs, none of us wanted to share anything after the game and go home. But we were encouraged as our Mozambique hosts and AIA volunteers picked up the slack and ministered powerfully to their fellow citizens. We saw that God has now empowered them to do the work, they must needed to see from us how to do it. Please keep them in prayer as their are about 100 people for them to follow up with.
Larry’s Commentary before the game of the Matula Court and Conditions