Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
We flew out of Zambia on September 8, 2014. After a long journey we finally arrived in Buffalo on September 9 without most of our luggage – surprisingly the problem was in New York, NOT in Africa. Praise God it did all arrive within a week’s time. It was a joy to be reunited with family, friends, and loved ones over the first few weeks. i spoke at my home church in Jamestown, NY that first Sunday back.
We had the privilege of taking part in the bi-annual Pastor’s Convention that our Fellowship holds at our headquarters in Waverly, NY. I shared a testimony and PowerPoint presentation about our ministry which soon can be viewed on Zion Fellowship Media on YouTube. We were able to spend Canadian thanksgiving in Canada with the Alyssa’s family. I spoke at her home church that Sunday. It was a nice time to be with them, and share with a ministry that has supported us.
Plans were being made for the arrival of our first child in January, when life took an unexpected turn. Alyssa came down with preeclampsia in her twenty-eighth week of pregnancy and baby Samuel needed to be delivered quite urgently. Alyssa was flown from Jamestown, NY to Erie, PA, and the next day on October 25, 2014 Samuel Jedidiah Steward was born 12 weeks early at 2 lbs 2 oz via caesarean section. He was immediately admitted into the NICU unit where the finest care has been provided for him.
Alyssa and Samuel are both doing very well. Alyssa was immediately relieved of many of her symptoms and was released from the hospital after only a few days. On the other hand, Samuel will need to stay in the NICU unit until he is mature enough to come home. Many doctors estimate that he has to stay in the NICU until his original “expiration date” of January 15, but we are praying for a pre-Christmas release. He is doing very well, after five and a half weeks in the NICU he is now up to 4 lbs 1 oz and has no obvious long term effects from his premature birth.
The Lord has provided a place in Erie, PA for us to stay while Samuel is in the hospital. We thank God for Nancy Klino and the Church of Mt. Zion – they have provided food, shelter, and a spiritual home away from home. Pastor Dan Caram was one of my lecturers in Bible College, and I have developed an admiration for his depth of understanding God’s Word. I will be ministering at their church on December 7th.
In this season of Thanksgiving we are just praising God for his hand upon us in so many ways. Especially in bringing us home from Zambia at his perfect timing. He foresaw the problems that would come and knew that Zambia was not the best place for our preemie baby to be born. We are so grateful to him.
I am also so grateful for all the churches and individuals that have supported us financially and continue to do so even after we have returned. Keep us in your prayers in this new season of life. We also believe that God has brought us home for other, spiritual purposes. We long to see Revival come to the nations. We long to see the Jamestown Church revived. The burden for lost souls burns in the heart, and we long to see God’s people grow up to maturity in Christ.
We know God has brought us home for some greater purpose, and we are seeking Him for His purposes in this phase of life.
Zambia will always have a special place in our hearts and I am still overseeing the work there, though it is in good Zambian hands for the time being.
Thank you so much for your prayers and support!
Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.
But thou art he that took me out of the womb: thou didst make me hope when I was upon my mother’s breasts.