It is Thanksgiving weekend in Canada. Which brings back great memories from my childhood, many of which center around the Brigden Fair and the Vineland/Ball’s Falls Craft show—aah, I would love to go for a walk in the woods with the falling leaves and crisp, fresh air, but alas! My thoughts have also travelled home over the past little while when we received word that Freedom Christian Community was celebrating their 125th anniversary this past month. We have been so blessed by their partnership in our ministry and hope that their celebrations went well. We are looking forward to being able to reconnect with many of our friends in Canada next year when we come home for our home assignment, but I need to keep focused on the work here and not get too distracted by that yet.
This has been an unusual October for Niger, this past week we have had three rains in the night and the weather has been reasonably cool (by cool I mean 35C for day time temps). I am definitely not complaining about the rain, especially if it keeps the temperature down! It just leaves me with a couple of concerns: the crops and the mosquitoes. I am hoping that the weather won’t interfere with the growing season and crops as Niger has been recovering from famine in many areas of the country. The problem with the mosquitoes is increased here in Niamey where the river has flooded in many areas and left in its wake lots of standing water. I suspect that this may be part of the reason the boys school has been so hard hit with illness. There have been a number of staff and students (as well as parents) that have had bouts of malaria this year. (One staff member has been suffering with it multiple times this year already). Cole has struggled off and on with a fever over the last week, and is running one now. We don’t know if this is malaria but the labs aren’t open ‘til tomorrow morning. Please pray that this week’s school break will provide a time of renewing for those that have been sick.
I am amazed at how so many of the stories from the bible come to life in new ways here. I have a whole new respect for the plagues seeing the mucky flood waters of the Niger, the abundance of so many bugs (flies, gnats, and others besides the mosquitoes) and the frogs that seem to be everywhere some evenings. Please remember us and the families in our neighbourhood as we continue to tell bible stories with the kids. Pray that we would have the language to be effective and that God would use them for his purposes.