Our last day in CAR came upon us way too fast. We had lots of sweet goodbyes, including the women’s group coming and, at my request, singing one of my favorite songs. As they finished up, we heard the news that
our dear friends, Olivia and Alexandre, the CEFA farm manager and his wife, had just had their baby! I rushed down to the hospital to see this little one we had been waiting for and hoping to see before we left. By the way, his name is Roy.
Then, in the morning as we sipped our last cup of tea at Gamboula, the Lord gave us the gift of this awesome sunrise!As we got ready to get into the car to leave, a few friends gathered to pray for us, including this young woman, Sylvie, who has helped us for all our 21 years in CAR – I had to translate for her what her tshirt said! We are thankful for all the years of working together, being family, through thick and thin, joy and sorrow. She has been such a gift to us! We took to the road, anticipating a short stop in Batouri, to fulfill a request from the regional governor to stop in at his offices. Our colleague, BB, had told us about the governor’s wish to shake Roy’s hand and thank him for all the good work happening for his people, his region. The hoped for few minutes turned into one and half hours (our apologies and thanks again to the Westers and Leanne T who waited patiently outside in the hot sun), but Roy was so blown away by the governor’s appreciation it was well worth the time. Roy was able to affirm BB not only as the main catalyst for all the co-ops, but as the future resource and connection for the region. This was the first time EVER in all our time in Africa that Roy had been called in to an official’s office to be profusely thanked and not asked for anything! What a gift!
We finally got back in the vehicle, and headed for Yaounde. As we were 45 minutes away from leaving the horrible bumpy dirt road for asphalt the rest of the way, the power steering went out. BUT, we found a gas station, not long after we hit the pavement, that had a very capable mechanic and a clean (it was even completely tiled!) oil change pit! Unheard of in our experience, but there it was, right when we needed it. The mechanic was able to fix the problem with the steering, and twenty minutes after pulling in to the gas station, we were on our way again. A wonderful gift from God!
We are now in Yaounde, and will fly to South Africa on Monday. Our hearts are full, but we are tired and ready for a break. Thank you for your prayers that keep us going!