Dear Ones who love the Swazis,
This will be short but, oh, so sweet. Spiritual victories abound in such measure that the overflow alone amazes us.
Yesterday at a poor primary school near Mozambique, 349 children ages 5 through 16 accepted Jesus Christ as Savior. Most were teenagers, boys and girls, from Zionist and other pagan backgrounds.
The young believers waited patiently while the translators wrote down all their names, ages, and religious ties. Then they sang and danced for an hour as Echo tried to figure how God would multiply loaves and fishes so Bibles will reach each home.
Two days ago 181 said "yes" to Jesus, the day before 120. At another of our 7 clinics, 237 folks bowed before the Throne.
Please share in the thrill of what's happening here. Your prayers, your concern that we have SiSwati Bibles, your continued financial donations, your eyeglasses, your handmade items we give out everyday all are blessing the people of Swaziland.
Personal stories abound, too. Four community leaders tarried one evening after dark as the translators loaded the trailers. Each had new eyeglasses from the clinic and talked excitedly. Finally we stopped to listen.
"It'll be easy for our community to tell others about Christ now, because we have seen Him live in you," said one man. "We thank you, not you but God, because this is the first time in all our lives we have received medical help."
Another leader added: "The spirit of respect you showed us as you moved among us today is something we need to imitate."
One patient scratched his leg on a barbed wire 5 years ago. The lingering infection turned his leg black and tripled the size; flies and maggots crawl in and out of the wound. Doctor Harry said, "It's the worst I've ever seen." We took the man to the hospital where he is now scheduled for an amputation which hopefully will save his life. The Luke Commission will pay for his care. Swazis suffer so long and so quietly...
Please pray that Echo and Harry will diagnose patients correctly with minimal resources. Most medical problems need not become life-threatening. However, the affects of AIDS is ever before us, as well as several venereal diseases. Pray also for Grace as she analyzes Swazis with poor eyesight.
With the victories come the sorrows. This update will end on a sad note. The 6-month-old daughter of Goodwill, one of our lead translators, died unexpectedly last night. The baby was probably HIV positive as are her mother and father. Today was to be a day of rest, as we prepare for clinics on Saturday and Sunday. Instead, it is a day of mourning.
Kal built his first coffin. We will go to the hospital soon to claim the baby's body and dress her for burial. Then the whole Luke Commission will travel far south to Goodwill's homestead to dig a grave and bury the child. Please pray for her mother and family who do not know Jesus. We know the little one has met Jesus face to face. Meanwhile, we're reminded that Jesus uses us broken vessels to accomplish His will.
Love in Jesus,
Harry, Echo, Kalvin, Jan, Grace ad the boys