Wallingford Christian Assembly

Zambia News - 'Arrival of triplets!' (September 2017)

29 September 2017

I am sitting in Lusaka, chilling out at the missionary guest house on my way back to UK after a very busy last few weeks at Chit.  I am taking the opportunity to catch up on a few tasks before I head back to the airport for the Emirates flight tonight DV. I spent the earlier part of the afternoon reading ‘Africa, Oh Africa’ by Albert Horton who served the Lord in Angola from 1924 to 1975 and who did a great work in translating the Scriptures into Luvale.  He is also the compiler of the Luvale grammar and language books which I am using.  He had an excellent grasp of the language, as well as of Luvale culture and traditions and was greatly used of the Lord amongst the Luvale people.  It was a very interesting read (all the more because I could identify with places such as Chavuma which were frequently mentioned in the text).  

As I hinted in the previous paragraph, the last weeks in hospital have been particularly busy.  We have had a visiting surgical team from UK who have enabled us to perform several surgeries which would have been a very great challenge usually, and, in the goodness of God, patients have done well.  We have had the orthopaedic team up for their regular two-monthly visit and the plastics team was in full swing when I left Chit yesterday.  On top of all that we have had a number of very sick medical patients who required a high level of care and out-patient clinics have been large.  The Lord has provided the necessary strength and wisdom in the different situations we have encountered.

‘His grace has no limit, His love has no measure,

His power has no boundary known unto men

For out of His infinite riches in Jesus

He giveth and giveth and giveth again.’

A very pleasant note at the end of a busy week was the birth of triplets last Saturday night.  We had been watching the mother on the ward for some time.  Labour was rapid once it started.  Triplet 3 was born only 10 minutes after Triplet 1.  All three are boys (don’t believe the pink dress in the photo below; there is no colour coding for sex over here), and all came out in good condition. Triplet 1 is the heaviest, but his brothers aren’t too far behind.  They will all need to stay on the ward till they gain weight. Their mother will have her work cut out!!

With all the work at hospital. Luvale language progress has been slower than I would have liked, although I do try hard to communicate with patients in their local language and so use what I know daily.  I always have some new vocabulary to add to my little book at the end of the day.  I did manage a short session with my friend Carol over the weekend; these are very useful for cementing the grammar into my brain.

We are well into the hot season and the melt factor is increasing (though Lusaka is a little more temperate than Chit).  The swimming pool has had a strange attraction at the end of a busy day.  Wednesday’s weather was very atypical, however. When I arrived back at hospital in the afternoon,  I noticed clouds gathering and not many minutes later it started to rain – real rain!!  Later in the day we had a full blown electrical storm with thunder and sheet lightning, completely out of season, but very refreshing after all the heat. Maybe the rains will come early this year….

The various gospel outreach work continues. The Lords Day afternoon village work and the English Gospel meetings are back on schedule after a short break during August. I was encouraged last week when a good number of parents from the paediatric ward came to the latter and heard the Gospel faithfully preached.  Some listened particularly well.  Pray that the Lord will work in their hearts and that they will trust Christ for salvation.  The Friday girls dorm Bible studies have resumed too, but I have not restarted my studies for those recently baptised in view of the fact that I am heading back to UK so soon.

I left Chit as quietly and anonymously as I could yesterday afternoon.  It was hard leaving my patients, some of whom I know very well as they have been on the ward for some time.  Moses hasn’t quite made it home yet (see last posting) but should make it soon.  After some deliberation I decided to take my own vehicle to Loloma which gave me greater freedom in departure time etc, and I enjoyed an evening with the folk there.  The Luvale Scripture revision team were in session: they have started work on the revision of the Luvale Old Testament.  I was also able to catch up briefly with Tim and Joy Beer.  It was a short night as I left for Solwezi  airportand  at 04.00h, in order to catch the 09.05 scheduled flight to Lusaka.  The Loloma folk very kindly allowed me to use their transport and driver which was a great blessing.

I am praying about return dates to Chit.  If the Lord opens up the way, I may come out for the month of November, as well as my previously planned travel in January.

Prayer Points:

For guidance from the Lord about returning in November, that I may know His will in this matter.  There is a great need, but my return should not just be a response to this.

For perseverance in language study while I am at home, that I will return with a better working knowledge of Luvale.

For patients in the hospital, for physical healing, and more importantly, for their salvation.

For plans for Edi’s future care, that the Lord will clearly guide in decisions regarding this – more news of this in later blogs DV.

For a time of refreshment and encouragement in the Lord while I am at home.