It has been a long time since our last update. The reasons for this are many, but for those who follow our blog we are sorry. For us, after we really started to get comfortable to all that we used to find so amazing and new it was a bit more difficult to come up with new posts. Although when we take the time to reflect on our daily lives and all the grace and blessings the Lord gives us day in and day out we realize that our now “normal” is so far from where we came from it is almost unbelievable.
The girls are flourishing here in faith, education and personality as we had prayed they would. Lily has completed 4 grade with close to straight A’s and will be in 5th next year. Josie finished her first year of school in reception (4K) and will be moving on to kindergarten next year. Both surprise us nearly daily with their growth as young girls and we thank God everyday for His blessings upon them.
We have also been blessed with a new addition to our family. We wrote a short piece for the Comboni Newsletter recently so we thought we’d share it here also.
After the flooding that ravaged many parts of Malawi and left thousands without food and shelter, we traveled south to distribute much needed aid to a community in which our Comboni Fathers are working. While there, we received a message from a social worker in Mzuzu, the far north of the country, stating that there was a 2 ½ month old baby that was in desperate need of help.
During our time here we had prayed and discussed the option of adoption, but never actively pursued it apart from a couple visits to local orphanages and making contact with some people involved in the process. Just before departing for Mzuzu, we learned it was a baby girl, 2.5 months old, her mom died shortly after her birth, her father had no part in her life and her grandparents could no longer care for her. We prayed as a family and we all felt called to go and help this baby. Little did we know how desperate the situation was. We arrived at the rural village home Sunday afternoon to find a precious baby girl who in hindsight was almost lifeless. The family had run out of formula days before and had no means to buy more. She did smile, but that was all. No tears, little movement, no wet diaper. After a visit with the grandparents and the social welfare officer, they asked us to adopt this child the next morning. We decided we needed to pray as a family as we assumed we were being called to offer Foster care for this child, not adopt her the next morning. We were given primary custody the next day, took the little angel home with us and haven’t looked back.
We have officially adopted Amari Margaret Wezi Kleven and she is now the youngest Comboni Lay Missionary in the Kleven clan! Over the past four months she has grown beautifully and has brought immense joy to our family. We thank Almighty God for this wonderful gift.
Over the past two years the Lord has challenged, pushed, and blessed in more ways we ever thought imaginable. Our work here is often measured in smiles and greetings each day rather than deadlines met and goals accomplished. Though this can seem to be a relaxed “easy” way of life, it can also be a point of frustration. We are reminded though in Phil. 2:14 “Do everything without grumbling or questioning”. So with obedient hearts we continue to listen. We are starting to realize that after almost 2 and half years here in Malawi our work for the Lord is just getting started.
Love and Blessings,
Jacob, Tonya, Lily, Josie, and Amari