“God, send me anywhere, only go with me. Lay any burden on me, only sustain me. And sever any tie in my heart except the tie that binds my heart to Yours.” - David Livingstone

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Power problems...

(This was written on April 29, 2015 by Dad.)

Greetings from Zambia!  The first two weeks of the Prophecies of HOPE “crusade” here in Lusaka are past, and we are in our third week with one more week to go.  We spent the first week dodging daily rain showers.  The second week the rains ended, and we settled into a nightly routine of meetings under a clear, cool, night sky.  It is a unique experience for us to look up at the stars while preaching the three angel’s messages in Africa!
Michael and some little friends.
There are between 1,200 – 1,500 adults attending the two outdoor meetings, and another 650 children are coming to one of the two church sites—300 plus at each site.  We estimate that the majority are church members among the adults, but with the children, the majority are from the community.  African children love to sing, and when you hear over 300 children singing scripture songs at the top of their lungs, the sound reaches far beyond the walls of the church! (See video below.)  The effect of God’s word on young hearts is no less thrilling. 

Last night after the topic on baptism, one thirteen-year-old boy marked on his card, “Please pray that God will help me to stop drinking.”  Another wrote, “I want to learn how to read.”  Truly the challenges and needs on the African continent are great!

This past Tuesday night, we were to present the topic of Antichrist Part #1.  That topic we normally present in the first week, to create interest in Bible Prophecy without actually fully identifying who the antichrist is.  However, the night we were to present it, the meeting was canceled due to rain.  This past Tuesday when we set out again to present that topic, about half-an-hour into the presentation the power went off.  After fumbling for some time with the generator, our helpers got the presentation back up and running again.  Hardly five minutes later, the generator died.  Out of gas!  Through the darkness, I saw a group of men gathered around the generator, but no one had a flashlight on.  It then dawned on me that we had no gas on hand!
My translator quietly remarked that someone had been sent to a nearby gas station to buy gas.  As we waited under the starlight I wondered if the audience would be patient enough to continue sitting on their hard benches or standing in the darkness to hear the rest of the presentation.  But no one seemed to be leaving, and the children especially were enjoying a lively conversation with each other. 

After some time, the headlights of a car appeared at one end of the “grounds,” and hurried across the field to where our generator was located to the left of our staging area.  We soon smelled the aroma of gasoline, and after several more minutes, the generator roared back into life.  The children let out a cry of delight, and a few moments later when the lights came on, the whole audience rejoiced.  Amazingly, no one seemed to have gone home. 

Later we learned that the entire capital and nearly the entire country of Zambia had lost electric power.  Apparently there was a system failure in the main power generating facility of Zambia, and the power was off for most of the night.  Strangely, it happened on the night we were presenting the antichrist…  “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Eph. 6:12)

That helped to explain to me why no one had decided to return home from the meeting when our generator failed, and we had to wait for gas.  At home, they had nothing but darkness to greet them, so they had decided to wait for the fuel, and the rest of the antichrist presentation.  Needless to say, we ended a bit late that night!

Michael at his site with his translator preaching
Perhaps the almost nightly power failures here, are turning out rather to the advancement of the gospel!  With no power at home, the lights and sound of our “crusade” on the central “grounds” of the community, attracts people who can’t do much else in the darkness.  When the power fails, so does their TV, their radio, their lights for gaming and social interaction, etc.  With nothing else to distract them, many wander over to the grounds to see the pictures on the big screens (sheets) and hear what is being preached.  Even those who remain at home find it difficult, during power failures, to avoid listening to the messages.  Since the brethren have rented an enormous speaker system, and fastened two big loudspeakers to a post high above the audience, the sound waves of the three angel’s messages are flying through the neighborhood!  Only God knows how many hundreds more are listening to the truth from their homes.

Again, thank you for your continued prayers and support for the work here in Africa!

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