Florence Mwale grew up dirt poor in rural Zambia and remembers being so hungry that she would steal relish from her mother's cooking pot to try to get enough to eat before the rest of her large family got their share.
Her family belonged to a Christian sect but wove together their beliefs about Jesus with traditional beliefs and traditional healing practices, so it was only in her twenties that Florence heard the Bible verse John 3:16 that says, "For God do loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life."
"I realised then that I was very far from the love of God because of my sins and I needed to become a child of God," Florence recalls. "I realised that God was the only source of true happiness and the giver of all things."
She handed over control of her life to Jesus. Now, instead of stealing food, Florence loves to make food for others and serve them through her hospitality.
Instead of being proud about her clothes, as she used to be, she is now more concerned with having the inner beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit.
Instead of fighting to solve problems, as she used to do with her siblings, now she is teaching young people at church to become mature in the things of God.
When Florence goes through trials, as she did in 2013 when her shop was broken into and everything was stolen, she finds that God helps her through those tough situations.
"I was heartbroken about the theft but I realised that God is the giver of every perfect gift and that He would replace all that the thieves had stolen," she shares.
Florence is now a pastor's wife, mum to six children and has five grandchildren.•