“Isisu somhambi asinganani, singangophondo lwempunzi. Literally: the stomach of a traveller is as tiny as the horn of a buck.”
Volunteer MWC Regional Representative for Southern Africa Barbara Nkala learned generosity from childhood.
Her mother “who had little and was annoyingly generous” would quote the proverb above as she gave food to visitors – “yet we never slept on empty stomachs.”
Her grandfather’s large home was a refuge and place of celebration not only for extended family but also vagrants and anyone who had less than he.
So, Barbara Nkala makes a budget to give, including needy people in the neighbourhood, vulnerable people who try to make a living, church projects, hospitality in the home – and MWC – in her giving plan.
Additionally, “many times, there is impromptu giving when directed by the Spirit.”
Since 2009, Zimbabwe has been experiencing an ongoing crisis of hyperinflation. Recently, the government outlawed the U.S. dollar which was serving the country in the absence of a stable national currency.
“Despite living in one of the more difficult countries economically, Barbara gives generously to others in need – and to MWC,” says Arli Klassen, MWC Chief Development Officer.
“Whatever we do for the least of these, we give to God,” Barbara Nkala says. “A deep relationship with God and his amazing love and numerous blessings made me realize I can never give enough to really match those free gifts and blessings from God.”
“I really appreciate the drive to build meaningful relationships globally,” says Nkala. “It is through MWC that I have learnt to appreciate that diversity provides a rich tapestry of perspectives in God’s kingdom.
“I have seen more and more that we are one another’s keepers.”
—Mennonite World Conference release
This article first appeared in Courier/Correo/Courrier October 2019.