Much has happened since our last update. We have seen the Lord’s hand at work in the village of Makobo. This is a village about 30 KM outside of Francistown where we have been teaching every Sunday for about 5 months. This group of people had many false beliefs—including animal sacrifices and ancestor worship—so we had to go slow and make sure they understood the truth of God’s Word about salvation. What a blessing it was a few weeks ago to see eight precious people, all adults, bow the knee on a cold concrete floor and call out to the Lord to save them! The next week on Sunday 4 more adults were saved. Please continue to pray for this group of people.
Whenever the Lord starts to work, Satan is usually not far behind to try to discourage God’s people. A few days after this victory at Makobo, we had some unexpected guests. Early on the morning of July 5th, my husband “just happened” to wake up around 1:30 AM and decided to go out and check his e-mail. (He is a real fanatic that way!) When he opened the hallway door, he noticed that the front door was standing open and there were people in our living room. He yelled and ran down the hallway, and actually grabbed one of the guys for a little while before he ran away. Thankfully they all exited quickly out the front door and down the street. There were either 5 or 6 of them, we are not sure. But sadly, they took with them my husband’s laptop, 10 pair of shoes that were by the front door, the console from the wii (but not the rest of it), a portable hard drive, a video projector, a recorder, and several other things that we use in the ministry here.
We did not hear them cut through the locks on the gate or the front door with bolt cutters, or shimmy the dead bolt on the front door with a crow bar to get in. The dog was asleep in the back of the house and didn’t hear them either. We are thankful that the Lord woke my hubby up when He did, otherwise they would have stolen a lot more. They had probably only been in the house about 1-2 minutes, because they didn’t have the other computers in the office dismantled yet.
We tried to call the police right away, but after trying 10 different numbers listed in the book, we gave up. We then called a saved man that comes to services from time to time, who is also a policeman. He wasn’t working, but he graciously offered to get ahold of someone for us. They finally got here about an hour later, looked around, asked us if we wanted to make a case, and told us what police station to go to this morning to fill out the paperwork. That was a joke—the lady just smiled at my hubby and told him that our things are long gone. Which is what we figured—but she could at least have had a little more sympathy.
So we decided that getting a security system in the house was a good idea. We had considered it before, but decided not to based on the cost and on the reputation that the security companies have here. But after this experience, we decided to go ahead with it. It took the guys 4 days to install the system, and they still haven’t got it right. They didn’t give us a manual on how to operate it—just a quick 3 minute explanation of how it works—so it has been mostly trial and error trying to figure it out. Let’s just say that the guys at the security company know where our house is! I think we have had 6 false alarms so far. But we are learning!
Our grocery bill also just went up with our two new additions: a German Shepherd named Queenie, and a Doberman named Firestorm. He is just 9 months old, and from the looks of his feet, he is going to be huge. Hopefully their presence in the yard will scare away any potential intruders. So now we have 3 dogs—2 to stay outside at night, and one to stay inside. Three dogs, the security system, bigger locks on the gates that can’t be cut, and a chain on the front door—it might sounds like overkill to you, but when you wake up with 6 guys in your house that you didn’t hear come in, it makes you rethink some things.
Meanwhile, the work goes on. We are not discouraged or defeated. We have learned many things, and hopefully are wiser from the experience. The second Missions Module was completed last week. It was a blessing to have the 5 young people here with us and we trust it was a learning experience for them. I have Bible studies with different ladies every day of the week except Sunday. It is a blessing to be able to share the Word of God with them and to see them grow.
One funny story before I sign off. One day when the guys were here putting in the security system, a couple guys stopped by who said they were from the power company. They were putting in new electric meters, and also putting some kind of a box on the hot water heater. When we asked what it was for, they said that if the power usage got too high, they could shut off all the hot water heaters in town! That way the power wouldn’t go out, and we could watch our television. When we told them that we didn’t have a television, they just looked at us funny. EVERYONE in Africa has a television—even if they live in a little shack. And on the outside will be a satellite antenna. Priorities—right???
Anyway, they put the box on our hot water heater and left. About bed time we noticed that we didn’t have any hot water. So we called the power company the next morning to let them know that something was wrong with the box they installed, and the lady told my husband that they didn’t install the boxes and they didn’t know who did. That didn’t make any sense, so my husband drove down to the power company and spoke to someone there. They assured him that they didn’t put it in, but they had hired a private company to put them in. He said he would contact them for us and let them know that they needed to come check it out. Well, when they still hadn’t showed up at 4 o’clock in the afternoon, Doug and Sam went out and disconnected the box themselves. About an hour later, they actually came. They were shocked that the guys had known how to disconnect it. So they put a new box on, but we know how to disconnect it if they decide to turn off our hot water too much. Oh, and a couple days later, the power went out for about 5 hours—even with all the little boxes on the hot water heaters! We were going to call them and let them know we couldn’t watch our television, but we didn’t have their phone number. TIA!!!!
Until next time,
Beverly is a wife, mother, and grandmother. She and Doug Hammett have been married for over 35 years. Since her father was a pastor and her husband was already a pastor when she married him, she is well acquainted with the blessings as well as the problems of the ministry! Bev’s favorite things to do are read and spend time with her family.
In Autumn of 2010, Doug stepped aside from his position as senior pastor at LVBC to reach and train men in Botswana and South Africa. Beverly continues to write for our ladies publication, giving her unique perspective of life in the ministry, and now life on the mission field. You can read more about their ministry here.