One-man Christmas rush, Abéché-style!

This post was written while we were in Chad.

We didn’t have running water in the house on Tuesday and Wednesday, but were glad that the water was running from the hose outside. This allowed us to fill the barrel outside, and transport the water into the barrel in the house. Because of the water problems we are facing, I tooksink cleaned by man the catch-all off of the bathroom sink and stuffed the sewer line with toilet paper. Then I put a bucket under the sink to catch the water that goes in there. This saves us a little extra water to flush the toilet during the day.

At first, I was busy waiting at an office and preparing some paperwork. As a result, I met the man I needed to meet, two minutes before the office closed! Often, you make these sacrifices without knowing if your efforts will be worth it or not; we are always thankful when the work we put into something is useful for the task before us!

However, all that time preparing for that moment, and the time waiting at the office, was time I could have used to do some last-minute Christmas shopping. So this afternoon, I did my very best to make one final push to find Christmas presents for the girls that would be there from early morning in Christmas eve.

Last-minute Christmas shopping is hard enough, without most of the shops closing before sunset in time for prayer time? A merchant had something I would have loved to buy for Sarah, but because I ran out of money and would be unable to get back to his boutique by 5:00 PM (in 10 minutes), I had to walk away empty-handed. But God helped me: another man kept his door open, and I found what I was looking for to give to Sarah, only better! And a pharmacy near the Biltine bus station had stayed open, so I bought some medicine we really needed.

The Man on the Radio

As I was driving around, I was listening to “Radio Service” out of Sudan. In Chado-Sudanese Arabic, an expert came on to explain the meaning of Christmas. He didn’t mention the Word of God becoming a man, or of census-taking, shepherds, wise men or mangers. The man explained that it is a day when Christians drink a lot of alcohol to become drunk! I couldn’t believe my ears! But I admit that his observations are NOT alien to reality, due to the carnality of supposedly Christian behavior.

gtc video manThere should be a radio station that explains the meaning of Christmas, and the wonderful Gift we received.

We spent our Christmas Eve eating nacho-flavored popcorn and watching a video our Glad Tidings Church friends sent us. Sharon stayed up until midnight, wrapping Christmas presents. At a glance:

  • ATM = works!
  • Water = tank in roof is full again!
  • Electricity = works!
  • Health = Deborah is staying healthy! Sarah still puts ointment on the warts on her foot twice a day.
  • Internet = working fine.

Do you have any favorite Christmas memories? Let us know in the comments below!

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