Monday, April 14, 2014

Holiday from School, Visit to the village

Two times a year the children have a month long holiday from school.  Usually it is over Easter and over Christmas.  So, it is an opportunity for them to reconnect with any family that they have in villages around the Caprivi area.  Some live very close, 30 minutes, and some live very far, 4 plus hours.  So we transport the close ones (the locals) first and the next day we take the rest.  That day of travel can take 8-9 hours because of the stopping and sometimes the rain or the road or the police stops along the way. 

But before they go, everyone must wash their clothes and blankets and clean their rooms. 

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We have a lot of break downs with our cars.  Not long ago we only had one out of three cars working.  Now we have two but they are the two smaller cars and the bus (12 seater) has been in the shop for over a month.  So, when it comes to transporting many children, we can only rely on God.  We had 17 children to transport for the long distance.  We have been blessed with some very good friends here in Namibia.  They have helped us and Zion in many ways.  This time it was to lend us their open bakkie so we could proceed with the transport.  Since it was raining, we tied a tarp over the back and put all the luggage there as well as a single bed mattress for children to sit/lay on.  Off we went. 

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It is sometimes difficult to see our children walk off into a village especially if they are not with another child from Zion.  We trust God that they know right from wrong and they will be strong to make good decisions and that their family and friends will welcome them and treat them nicely. 

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I hope they know that we are all praying for them: for their safety, their health, their attitudes and right decisions.  We trust that God will keep watch over them until we see them next month. 

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Well, here at Zion, the small ones will play together.  We will all have fun and await the return of the older children who are missed.

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                                Come near to God and He will come near to you.  James 4:8

COZV Mission School End of First Term 2014 Assembly

The beginning and end of each school term is celebrated in a special assembly.  The day is opened with children singing songs of praise, prayer, the pledges and the national anthem. 

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Then the director prepares a special devotion.  This time the scripture came from Genesis 2:2 “By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing, so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.”  He had 3 children hold jugs of water straight out in front of them and very soon they were tired and needed rest.  So, with this holiday, they should rest but not forget what they have learned.  Then they should come back next month rested and ready to work hard for it is a season of learning for them. 

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Then each name was called by Lorna and one by one they received there school report while the others cheered for their accomplishments. 

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All filed back into class to be dismissed by each teacher and a day of play began. 

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We are thankful for the teachers and we are thankful for the parents that bring their children to Zion Mission School.  We are blessed to be able to provide a Christian education and teach the Bible, Character Traits of Christ and pray.  If each one can only reach one…  Now we have just over 100 children attending the Mission School and more parents want to send their children but space is an issue.  God will provide. 

The children have been using the bathrooms inside of the children’s home which is a bit away from the school.  Also, they must pass by the children’s bedrooms which can be a temptation and it drags in a lot of sand/dirt and it is almost impossible to keep the toilets clean.  Now, we have new bathrooms, specifically for the school children, under construction near the school.  Thank God for things that seem small but are really big!

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Didn’t I tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God?  John 11:40

Everything is possible to the one who believes.  Mark 9:23

Sunday walks and the river

We are always thankful for the family worship on Sundays.  Travis typically leads the service.  It is difficult pulling together information to make sense to such a wide age range.  He never thought he would be a pastor but he has become blessed by God for this service. Sometimes it is discouraging because the children do not seem to hear or respond.  But God calls us to plant seeds.  Then it is up to Him - God.  We know one day there will be a great harvest.  We may or may not see it but we are called in this season to plant.

After service we enjoy a family walk.  We really enjoy walking by the river, but during this flooding time, we are unable to get to the river side because the water is too high.  So, we headed out onto the road. 

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When we got to the bridge we could see that the water was coming up under the bridge and making it wet.  That is when it becomes concerning because if the bridge goes out, we become an island and our boat is broken! 

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There is water all around us and the children love to get in it no matter how dirty!  That is why we love the swimming pool!

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Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; His Love endures forever.  Psalm 107:1

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Swimming – In a pool!

We go on walks frequently with the children.  They love to get out and explore, eat the fruits on the trees, and swim in what ever water is around.  So, if we walk by the river, they want to “swim”.  If we walk by a flooded road, they want to “swim”.  Sometimes we let them swim.  But now we know about a pool where they can really swim!  It costs N$10 or $1 US dollar per child and $1.50 for adults.  So, we decided to try to take all of the children that are schooling here and living here.  That means the 4 youngest (3 years and under) did not go and the children that are the oldest and schooling in the government schools did not go.  The total was 15 children and 2 adults.  We just had one working car but they did not care.  They just wanted to swim.  So we piled them in the car and off we went, to the pool.

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The children laughed, jumped, played and even did a bit of swimming.  We had a couple of “swimming lessons” and a few are catching on quickly.

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Most were tired and some even slept soon after getting in the car to go home. 


Know therefore that the Lord your God is God; He is the faithful God, keeping His covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love Him and keep His commands.  Deuteronomy 7:9