Sunday, September 14, 2014

Visit to the Village

The thought of driving in this country is quite possibly the thing I dread most about life here.  While many of the main roads are paved, aggressive driving is the only kind of driving here.  So I will wait to get behind the wheel for a bit and rely on others to help me get around.

For the first time this past week, I relied on the wheels of a taxi to help me get to where I was going.  I was with two other young ladies, one who knows some Zarma (a local dialect) and another who knows French.  We were venturing out to find a new friend of my roommate, a young lady who lives in a nearby "suburb" (i.e. village) on the outskirts of the city.  She is trying to learn English, hoping to someday go to the States for an education.  We chatted a bit with the taxi driver, who was very gracious (even after we made a wrong turn).  When we reached our destination, he refused to take any money!  One of God's many blessings:  my first taxi ride was free.

We finally found our friend and the four of us walked through sand dunes and corn rows to get to her house.  The taxi would never have made it through the sand, so we met at the street.  The day was hot, but it was absolutely beautiful.  I think I miss the "country," even if it is all beige and blue.  It was good to be away from cars and lights.  I soaked in the view from where her house sits at the top of the hill.  A small hut stood next to a cooking pot over smoking coals at the entrance to her house and small goats meandered.  We sat in the shade of her backyard where they are growing beans, and we chatted in French, English and Zarma.  Of course, I could only really understand the English and parts of the French, but the fellowship was sweet.  As this young lady shared her faith journey of knowing Jesus, I couldn't help but think of our meeting as, what my mom would call, "a divine appointment."  It was so random, yet so reflective of God's sovereignty.  Her story, told in broken English, is inspiring and challenges me to have the same kind of boldness.

At the end of our time together, we met her father and mother.  Her father was so grateful for our visit.  He said that they do not know many Christians and it was a blessing to have us at their home.  Please pray for this family, and others like them, as they face rejection by many for their faith.  What an eye-opening experience for me.  The Lord used it to give me perspective and to remember the reality of where I am living.  It is easy to forget this reality when I live day to day on Sahel's campus, in a kind of "American bubble."  Please pray that I am guided by the Lord in all areas of ministry, whether on or off campus.

Walking together through the sand to our new friend's house.

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