Journal Entry Fifteen

I heading out for a three day conference and will not have internet and maybe no electricity, but I want to share quickly about our Wednesday (today is Friday morning). I would love to tell you where we were, but I can’t really, we went to Triangle, which is a sugar cane production area with a plant and thousands of acres of sugar cane. We left Triangle and headed a ways and turned North (will maybe northish) and headed off through the cane fields. The bring to memory my youth when I was an irrigator for sugar beets. Different crop, same process, same end product. After winding our way through the cane, we came to a large orange grove, the largest I have seen and it was ready to harvest. We went by several large ponds, irrigation ponds I suppose, which had warning signs concerning crocodiles and hippos. No fishing or swimming was the warning. Heeded, thank you! We also saw a monkey, we have seen few so far this trip. He paused for pictures and then continued on his way.

We finally arrived at a place where we left the road and “drove” on a foot path for just under a kilometer. It was an adventure I have shared before. We stopped at a home complex with a few building and a couple of families. They watched the car as we took to the path on foot. We passed some really interesting rocks, passed by fields of cotton, corn, sweet potatoes and not sure what (a grain that they put on top of bread before baking). In the middle of nowhere we found a soccer field. Further down the trail were some men building a thorn bush fence, using a team of cows to drag them along. Thin it was down into the river bed. No water has flowed there for some time so it was dry except for a few stagnate pools. The pastor and Alone looked for a pool large enough to baptize. They found one that was almost, so they got a shovel and deepened it for the baptisms. While they were I walked along the river bed. I found several holes that were dug in the sand that had filled with water. People were coming down not far from us and getting water from one of the holes they had dug. Then it was time.

We were there to witness the baptism of three local women. The church is not very old and meets in a lady’s house/yard (no grass). We started with a song or two (Zimbabweans always begin with a song) and the pastor and Alone talked about what was about to happen. Then one by one the ladies entered the water, were seated and lowered into the water. There was much joy and excitement. And community people were around watching which was a testimony as well.

After we were finished we continued on to the home the church meets at. We had more singing, and Sherry and I shared with them. I talked about what gives baptism it power and how we are to live now that we are baptized from 1 Peter 3 and Sherry shared her testimony and the power and opportunity of hard times. Then it was time for sadza and chicken. We were given a shopping bag full of peanuts (ground nuts, here) to take home. They are small but I am enjoying them. We walked back to the car (which as usually seemed much shorter trip) and headed home. We stopped on a bridge over a fair sized river to see what we could see. About 50 meters up stream we watch a hippo surface and dip several time. We continued on, dropping the pastor off and a lady from his church (he has two. The one we did baptisms at is 15 miles from his house and other church and he sometimes just bikes there, other times, drives part and bikes part.) Wednesday was a day full of joy, praise, and adventure.

Thursday was a slow day from me. I had several projects. Sherry did a seminar at the children’s village for the house mothers, social worker, and chaplain. She did a great job. So today we head off for another church, two this time, several sessions, two lessons and two sermons. It should be another great day in Zimbabwe. God bless you and may he use you this weekend to do some very good work.

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