This past January, our digital media intern, Garrett Streeter, had the chance to visit Agape House. Here are his reflections on his time spent in the Warm Heart of Africa:
“The two weeks I spent in Malawi will always hold a special place in my memory. While Malawi remains one of the poorest countries in the world, the people there are in many ways no different than you or me. Malawi is a country of beauty and rich culture. My two week stay in Malawi showed me how much of a blessing and a curse living in a rich nation is. Overall, this trip showed me that should be extremely grateful and not complain.
Things like warm running water and air conditioning are considered “must-haves”, or rights in the U.S. In Malawi, the majority of the populace lives in a mud-brick house that they built themselves. Thus, indoor plumbing and control of the water temperature are not rights. They are luxuries. Three meals a day are not guaranteed for many in Malawi. The Malawians live with extremely little, but are still happy. The Christians there still live out godly Christian lives.
The poverty of Malawi and the happiness and caring hearts of its people convicted me. I complain because I’m hungry, because I have a lot of work to do, because of all sorts of petty reasons. However, there are people in much worse circumstances that are happier than me and complain less than me. By the fact I live in the U.S. I am so blessed that I have no right to complain. However, this does not decrease the importance of the problems I face, but it silences my petty complaining.
I also saw how easy it is to be dependent on modern conveniences and not dependent on God. In America the ingredients for meals are easily found and purchased, meals are normal, routine, nothing out of the ordinary. However, these are still provided by God. In Malawi many are subsistence farmers, thus if rain does not fall there will be no food. In this situation it is much easier to see God’s provision and thank Him for it.
Overall my trip to Malawi was humbling and convicting. It was an honor to be able to join the people of Malawi in the work they are doing. I would go back in a heartbeat, for I believe Malawi to be one of the most beautiful places on earth.”