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Sunday, April 13, 2014

Snaps of Zimbabwe

 Today, the 13th of April,  we were at Ebenezar Baptist Church in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe. 
 There's nothing like the view of a thatched roof from bed!  I don't know what the snow affect is, dust?  It's not on my camera. 
 I'm reading David Livingstone's book Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa and he comments on every animal and bug he sees, so I took a picture of 3 moths.  David Livingstone would tell you the Latin names, so in the same spirit, I will tell you there are two normal moths and one really, really big one. 
 Paul with Pastor Dubay before church this morning. 
 Somehow we wandered into the red light district.  :-)  I think it was advertising an electrical store. 
 Tim and Evangel squished in the back of the car kept in high spirits, even when their heads hit the ceiling because the road was so rough. 
 Josh got some "help" with his school work from a cute little 3 year old. 
 Evangel is editing hours every day, working on her movie based on the book Star of Light. 
 Tim bodyguards me and helps tote groceries when we take the path to town. 
Yesterday we had a little robbery attempt that left our hearts pumping.  Some guys came to both sides of the car, and one reached for my purse.  I use the old "twist the pinky" move I learned from my cousins when we threw each other off a raft when we were kids.  He didn't get anything, and I only got a little bruise somehow in the tussle. 
As he walked away, we realized Evangel had just been on the street with her computer, and we tried to whip the car around to make sure she was OK.  That car couldn't whip, there were too many people around.  But she was OK anyway.  Thankfully she had rushed inside just seconds before the thieves made their move and didn't even know it had happened. 
Tonight we are staying at a place with an internet connection for the first time in a while, so we seize the moment and use it like crazy, then it's back to sporadic visits to internet cafes for another week.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

We forgot to check the traffic report

Sunday on the way to church we had a little congestion.
But basically it was a happy crowd, no road rage.  These ladies in a donkey drawn cart didn't seem too distressed about having their picture taken.
 Some slow moving traffic was polite enough to move out of the way.
 We were pretty excited to see 4 lane roads so we had place to pass.
"He that hasteth with his feet misseth his way" is
probably a good verse to keep in mind, always, but maybe more so
on the way to church in Zimbabwe.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Global Grandma

 Hermana Consuelo greets her newest grandson, Nathanael, at the airport.  She had just flown from Guatemala to Houston to London to Cape Town, and she arrived in fine style.  She wasn't frazzled at all, just calm, dignified, and glad to be on her own two feet again. 
 Hermana Consuelo (Sister Consuelo) had never met Connie, 3, or Daniel, 5, either.  She hadn't seen Gloria in 14 years!  She also had never been on an airplane before.
 I am calling her "Wonder Woman" (though much better dressed than the famous one ; - )  for daring to come this far without being able to speak the language, or to read or write. 
 James and Gloria are enjoying showing her some of the pretty sights of Cape Town.  I hear she really liked the trip to Simon's Town to see the penguins...
but she drew the line at riding camels.  Connie wouldn't do it either, so Daniel had to be the brave guy who went up on the tall camel. 
I can't believe I'm missing this epic visit!  But I'm so thrilled for Gloria to have her mom for 3 months after 14 years!  She once told me she had 3 big prayer requests 1) a baby 2) a house 3) to see her mom again.  She had to wait 11 years for her first baby, and the house came about three years after that.  Now the last one has been granted!  I thank the Lord! 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

The Color of a Trip

Every trip we take is flavoured by the books we read as a family along the way.  Usually we have at least one family read-aloud going on together, besides our own books and our family Bible reading. 
Our last trip was flavoured by Joel C. Rosenberg books, while this trip is deep into The Jungle Doctor. 

We have been reading Jungle Doctor books for about a year now, whenever we could find them.  We loved The Doctor of Tanganyika which we found in a crowded old book shop in Port Elizabeth. 

                                                           *     *     *
                  I'll add a little commercial here for that bookshop.  It's called Classics and is across from the Spar in Walden.  Timothy was able to add to his Biggles collection there, Josh found the Hardy Boys, and Evangel found LM Montgomery and others she likes.

And now back to our show. :-)   
                                                         *      *       *

Dr. Paul White tells his story with wit enough to keep us laughing, and wisdom enough to know he's one of us.  He's a good guy for sure.  It's not often you run into a Christian book with an entire chapter on funny things that have happened to a guy in bathrooms, but he has one.  It's entitled "Bathrooms". 

This from a man who's story could have been told with grimness.  His wife suffered from mental illness, and died in her 50's from mental problems.  His every mention of her shows tenderness and caring. 

He is an Australian who went to Tanganyika (now Tanzania) shortly before World War 2.  Because of his wife's illness, and his own struggles with asthma, he only could stay one term, and then had to come home in a boat during the war.  But those 4 years in Africa colored the rest of his life.  He did go back to doctoring in Australia, but always he was speaking about the Lord and Africa in churches, clubs, and soon, on the radio. 

The Jungle Doctor radio program ran for over 25 years, and from that came more than 25 Jungle Doctor books, animal fable books, and some TV programs. 

We're inspired by his work ethic, his zeal for the Lord, and his humor.  He's got me plodding along again on a book project I hadn't touched in months. 

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord."

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Fun Day at KSB

On the road again--first family trip of 2014 finds
 us in Virginia.  This is not Virginia, USA, but Virginia in the Free State in South Africa.  Paul has been able to preach and draw 11 times this past week.
 We have been staying in a most unusual place.  Kwasizabantu Mission has been given the use of a defunct mining network of buildings.  It's huge.  It was used to house over a thousand people before.  The hostel they gave us to sleep in could house 100 people easily, so the five of us have lots of room to rattle around in there. This is a little more elbow room than we're used to. 
 Wheat, from seed to feed in 9 days!  Wow!
 We really enjoyed seeing their hydroponics project.  They said they learned how to do it on You tube. 
 My boys think it is hilarious that this mission dog's name is Vicky.  She's probably a very noble beastie. 
 Three times Paul preached in the evenings to the KSB people and guests.  We're enjoying getting to know them.  I was fascinated by the egg cartons used to help with acoustics.
 I got a close up to show our friends the Kers. 
 Josh was thrilled when  a school gave Paul a pack of biltong with chocolates on top.  This is a top-of-the-line gift as far as he is concerned.  Yum! 
 As part of Fun Day today, there were game stations where the children could go to play games.  The boys gravitated to shooting.  Tim won a prize for best adult shooter which was quite a big moment for him. 
 There was a competition to see who could string the most beads in a few seconds. 
 Evangel didn't play much, but she helped out with the flour digging game.  Little toys were hidden in that huge tub of flour and the kids had 15 seconds to see how many they could find.  There also was a bit of a flour fight at times. 
"How good and how pleasant for men to dwell together in unity.  " 

We're thankful for the many ministries of KSB.  They are quite an example of industry in their outreaches and businesses. 
There is a bakery, school, farm, and constant evangelism.  There is constant vigilance needed as thieves try to steal their copper wiring. 

We first heard of Kwa Sizabantu by reading God Among the Zulus.  We're thankful to be friends with so many of them. 

Sunday, February 2, 2014

The Great Commission Course 2014


Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
~ ISAIAH 6:8
I thought there was no way the Great Commission Course of 2014 could be anywhere near as good as last year and I was right.  It was BETTER!  This year I got to go with my big brother, Timothy, and our friends Ryan and Berdine.  It was wonderful!  The Great Commission Course is designed to stretch minds and muscles and to get Christians prepared and equipped to boldly go out and reach the world for Christ.  We learn a ton, even if we've done it before, as there's so very much to absorb, so much to learn, so many things that need doing, and so many lost people to reach.

You get pushed to the limits to do things you never thought you could do as you learn to more fully to rely on God.  Every day is filled to the brim with physical training, lectures, lessons, workshops, outreaches, field trips and much more, and even if the days had not been full, we still would've gotten so much out of them just getting to be with so many other like-minded Christians who truly want to follow and obey Christ with all their hearts.
We made it to the top!
On Table Mountain with Berdine, Feylin, and Taryn
Timothy, myself, and Ryan doing an obstacle course at camp.
Witnessing with Berdine at the waterfront

Bible drill could get a bit competitive but was super fun. :)

Smeared in shoe-polish to help us camouflage better for the night ops.
Really fun, except that shoe polish kind of burns. :)

The course starts with a 4 day camp, which several more of our friends were able to attend.  The camp gives you a taste of what is to come, but with more of a camp feel, games, and team-building activities, as well as impromptu tree-climbing, water-fights, and lots of laughter as we tried to prepare for the talent show for the last evening there, which came off splendidly.
"Now if you were to die tonight..."
A skit we called "Worst Case Scenario" where Ryan was the Christian witnessing to Oliver who was a hilariously stubborn unbeliever.  It ended with a duel and came out really funny. :)
 The guys at work the morning we went to help out at Kwasizabantu mission in Malmesbury.

The course had been planned so that it would start with a hike up Lion's Head, but due to weather it was postponed to a few days later as part of the point of that particular hike was to see Cape Town spread out before us.  Anyway, it was a lovely hike when we finally did go, with a gorgeous view, and as the sun set we had our 'sermon on the mount,' scripture was read, and then we all sang 'Amazing Grace' to Ryan's chanter.
Ryan playing his chanter and Ryno playing the pennywhistle
atop Table Mountain.

All but two of us (who were lost but now are thankfully found) atop Table Mountain

Duelling at sunset atop Table Mountain.
Highlights of the course for me were the hikes, the fellowship, self-defence, the outreaches (I actually enjoyed it this year, got out of my comfort zone, and spoke to far more people in one-to-one witnessing than ever before!), and even speaking on the radio this year (last year I did not feel that went well for me). I also enjoyed the fun of practicing situational preaching where you try to respond as the other course participants play the parts of critics and see if you're prepared to answer questions of whatever crowd it is you're simulating speaking to.  Highlights for Timmy included target practice with the guns and Dr. Hammond's lectures especially.
Me with some of the younger girls the at Ocean View.


Self defence with my friend, Feylin. Awesome fun! :)
One of the fun new things to try out for us were the tracts made to look like wallets, especially since the day we practiced that form of evangelism was Saturday and we were all pretty tired after a packed week and quite ready for Sunday.  We took turns "accidentally" dropping the wallets out amongst the crowds at the waterfront, and then sat down to watch and film who would pick it up and what their reaction would be.  It is a little embarrassing when you get caught "accidentally" dropping these wallets, and they are honourably returned to you.  That happened to me once and then I had to laugh at myself being so disgusted with the honesty of the place. :) Ryan got involved in a similar situation which started out with the lady yelling at him for purposefully dropping the wallet, but thankfully it was turned into a witnessing opportunity.

Me atop "Energy" at Rhodes Memorial!
Well, to sum it all up the course was fun, stretching, revitalizing, amazing, and life changing - in more ways than one!  I think we all grew by leaps and bounds, and to anyone serious about missions who's looking for a good place to start?  I think you've found one. :)
In His Service and Loving it,