Lincoln and Jenny - Missionary Associates to South Africa

Sunday, September 24, 2006

5 Months Pregnant

I am 5 months pregnant today. Please remember that the camera adds 10 pounds! I went to the Dr. on Thursday and got the "your gaining too much weight" talk. He was very nice about it, and he is right. So, I decided to start eating better starting on Friday. Well, another missionary associate from the U.S. named Nate discovered a doughnut shop in town, and brought us a dozen doughnuts on Friday morning. Keep in mind that I have not even seen a real doughnut in seven months! I only had 3, which I thought was really showing great restraint since I could have easily eaten the entire box and not even told my family about them. Then that night we had a braai for Adrian Trapani's birthday and Rebecca (a YWAM missionary from the U.S.) made a chocolate cake with chocolate icing using a recipe from the U.S. Cake like that is also something we don't see here very often, so I had to have a piece. And I only ate 1 piece, (and some ice cream with chocolate sauce on top). I vowed to do better on Saturday, and only had 3 bowls of ice cream. (Lincoln found ice cream here that tastes exactly like a Wendy's Frosty.) I figured that I needed to finish it so that it would no longer be a temptation. So today, I told myself that I would have no sugar, it is 7 pm and I have had no sugar today!!!! For those of you that know me, that is huge for me! But the fat free mango sorbet in the freezer is calling me. Posted by Picasa

Do I really need a bath?

That was the question Kyler asked right before I took this picture of his legs. He did get a bath in case you were wondering!

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"We thank God for you"

Last week we got a new baby in the shelter. He is 2 years old. His name means "We thank God for You." He has been in a government hospital for 5 months because his mother burned him. We are not sure how he was burned, but you can see the burn marks all over his back, arm, and side. It looks like she may have poured boiling water on him. Many of his burns have healed, but on his side under his arm he still has open wounds where the skin is growing back. Dr. Neil has been coming to change his bandages. The poor little boy is in so much pain and has gone through so much trauma that it at first took three of us to hold him down to change his bandages. (He's responding better after a few days now.) Dr. Neil told us that this wound should have healed by now, but at the government hospital they were cleaning the wound every day, which has actually caused it to remain open. He has us putting this medical cream goopy stuff (not it's technical name) on the wound every day instead of washing it. After changing his bandage the first day here, Dr. Neil gave the boy some candy. He is so untrusting and traumatized that he wouldn't eat the candy. (I think he thought we were trying to trick him.) I look forward to watching this little boy heal physically and emotionally as he realizes that this is a safe place. We truly thank God for this little boy.

Job Creation

This is Lincoln. Sorry for not updating the blog for so long, I’ve been really busy. Here’s a few quick things that have been going on. I've been teaching a class at SAST (South African School of Theology). I teach a class called "Doctrine of God and Angels." I enjoy it, but it is a real challenge because my students speak English marginally, but they don't read or write english very well, and don't understand complex theological terms. It is very challenging.
You may remember that I wrote about a child run home that I visited in Freedom Park awhile back. There are two teenagers, a twin boy and girl, and a younger 5 year old boy. The mother died from AIDS a year ago, and the father has been out of the picture for a long time. We decided to hire the older boy here at the shelter on Saturdays. Last week was his first Saturday at work. From talking to the childcare workers at Freedom Park they said that he was very happy to have his first day of work. Being able to hire him means a lot to me. Seeing such poverty, sickness, and hopelessness can be a little overwhelming. Ideally, you we want to help people help themselves instead of just giving them handouts. So it is very good that we are able to bring Tse Etse here to the shelter and teach him how to work.

Along those same lines I have found a 17 year old kid in Freedom Park to make these toy airplanes for me. They are made out of used oil cans and other trash. I bought a plane similar to this at an outside market in Jo-Burg. I had the idea to find somebody in Freedom Park to make similar ones. The idea is both job creation and a way to make a little money for the shelter. We need to find some way to market them in America, so if anybody has any ideas, let me know.
It feels good to be able to make a difference in the life of these two boys. There is so much need, but little by little we can make a difference.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Cute Kids

Here is a cute picture of Madison and Kyler right after bath time. It is very rare that we get a picture of Kyler looking at the camera and smiling at the same time.

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Water for Freedom Park

Every week Lincoln goes to Freedom Park (an informal shanty town made of tin shacks with no running water or electricity) to bring food, water and God’s love to the people who live there. He goes with one of the in-home caregivers who takes him to the people who are in the most need. A lot of the patients are HIV positive and need to take medication. In order to be eligible to receive medication the patients have to be well nourished and hydrated or the medication will not work. So, Lincoln brings food and water. The food and water he provides is quite possibly the only food and water those patients will receive that week.
We have started asking people to save their empty water and soda bottles so that we can use them to fill with water to bring to Freedom Park. Each week our kitchen looks like a water bottling factory. (See picture above.) We are doing all that we can, but the need is so tremendous it feels like we are barely even making a dent. But it is great for Lincoln to be able to develop relationships with the people there and see that he really is making a difference in those people’s lives. Posted by Picasa

Anna Arrives

Anna arrived on August 31st from Pastor Dan Betzer's (David’s dad) church in Florida. She will be working with the shelter until the end of December. She has come with a servant's heart and a willingness to help out wherever she is needed. We appreciate her all ready, and know that she is a wonderful addition to our team here at the shelter. It is amazing to see how God has brought her here at just the right time. David and Janis will be gone from the end of November until the first of the new year, Gordon & Michelle’s baby is due in October, and Derek and Rebecca will be moving off the property into their new house any day now, so having Anna here during all of this transition will be a huge help. From the time the idea of working at the shelter was presented to her, to the time she arrived was about 1 month. God has already done some amazing things in her life to get her here in such a short amount of time, and we look forward to seeing what else he has planned. Posted by Picasa

Friday, September 01, 2006

Baby Goes to His Forever Family

Lincoln and I recently took baby Lesego to be adopted. Here is a picture* of him with his new mom, dad and older brother who was also adopted from the shelter about a year and a half ago. Lesego had been abandoned right before Christmas on the street near a clinic when he was about 2 weeks old. He was found by a security guard and after spending a few days in the hospital he was brought here to the shelter. Lesego went happily to his new family. He was completely at ease and smiled almost continually. He seemed to fit in completely, and it was more like he was being reunited with his true family after a short absence than just meeting them for the very first time.
After we left I was talking to Lincoln about how special it is to be a part of the adoption. We are the ones who hand the baby over to his or her new parents, we are in the room for their first minutes together. I told Lincoln that it is like being in the delivery room when a mom and dad meet their newborn for the first time. It is such a tender moment!
We see so many unhappy and tragic things here, it is wonderful to be a part of these joyous adoptions and see that there truly is hope for each of our children.
*Picture used with permission from Lesego's new mom and dad.


You'll notice a new vagueness to our blog. We recently were told that it is illegal to give any information about a child, tell a child's name, or post a picture of a child accompanied by either information or a name. So you may notice that all of our past posts have had names and pictures removed. From now on we will have to give a fake name in a story, and we can't include a picture with the story. We can show pictures, but not accompanied by a name or story. I'm truly sorry to all of you who like to hear the stories and see the pictures. Please continue to pray for our kids, even if your prayers are a little more vague.