If any of you have applied for a visa in another country, you know it is quite an experience. After two months of gathering paperwork, getting our police clearance, going to doctor’s appointments, waiting on lawyers, and waiting on delayed deliveries from couriers, we were finally able to hand in our paperwork for the renewal of our visas. Now we wait. It usually takes 6-8 weeks, so hopefully by the middle of November, we will hear from Home Affairs as to whether our paperwork was acceptable and they have granted our visas. If not, we have to start the process all over, and pay the fees again.
Please pray! We cannot purchase our plane tickets for our return to America for furlough until we have the visas in hand. And we have the added factor of the approaching Christmas season making tickets hard to find as well as more expensive.
We have given notice on the house that we are renting that we plan to leave the end of December. Depending on when our visas arrive and when our departure date to fly back to America is, it could be sooner than that. So we have started the long and tiresome process of sorting, tossing, giving away, and packing up all our belongings. For us two old people, it is a daunting task!
We had spoken to the lady at the storage facility 2 months ago and she assured us that she would have storage units for us. But when we checked back with her on Friday, she said there are no units available. So now we have to try to find somewhere else to store our things. Please pray that the Lord will lead us to the right place.
Sometimes just paying a bill here can be a long drawn-out ordeal. For example, on Friday we had this scenario. My husband tried to pay a bill online, by transferring money from our bank account here to their account. But he got an error message. The system was not working. They suggested we pay the bill at a certain store. It just so happened that I was going to that store to get some groceries. So I took the bill and the correct cash (because they often don’t have change) and went to the store.
After buying my groceries, I went to the service counter to pay the bill. But the lady said they didn’t take payment for those bills anymore. She said I needed to go to the post office to pay it. Since the post office was just across the street, I put my groceries in the car, drove there and went in to pay the bill.
After waiting in line for almost an hour, I finally got to the window, only to find out I couldn’t pay the bill there. Apparently I needed something called a postal order (some kind of form to fill out) and they were out of them. I couldn’t pay the bill without the postal order. They were waiting for the government to send them some more.
Another man came in and walked up to the counter to ask them if they had any postal orders. Apparently he had been to 3 other post offices and they were all out of the form too. There seems to be a nationwide shortage of postal order forms—which is bad when they require that you must have them before you can pay your bill there.
Anyway, the lady at the post office told me to go to Standard Bank and I could pay the bill there without a postal order. Since there was a Standard Bank just around the corner, I walked over there, only to find out that it had closed the end of September and moved to another place. Since it was over 90 degrees outside and my groceries were sitting in a hot car, I decided I better give up and head for home before the milk went sour and the eggs hatched into baby chicks!
Delays, frustrations, disappointments, changed plans—all these things come into our life. They are just a part of living. We don’t have a choice about that. However, we DO have a choice about how we are going to respond to them. What is God trying to teach us? Does He have someone that He wants me to witness to along the way? Can I trust God that He is working all things out for my good? Can I trust that He knows what He is doing and He has it all under control? The answer to those questions determines whether we respond in griping and complaining, or in praise and victory!
Thanks for all your prayers for us! We are looking forward to seeing you, hopefully soon! And now, we have to go find another Standard Bank, and stand in line, and hopefully will be able to pay that bill!
Love to all,
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.
Read Beverly’s articles here and her salvation testimony here.
How well I recall similar experiences, Bev! Praying for you…