With Christmas almost upon us I just wanted to share one last update on Montgomery life for 2018.
Firstly, a very big thank you to everyone who contributed financially and ‘in kind’ towards gifts for the children. In spite of the continuing economic and supply problems in the country, due to your generosity we have managed to put together packages which we believe will delight the children next week…toys, books, clothes, back-packs, sandals and of course, the most important thing (to them anyway!), sweets and chocolates. Their gifts are now all packed and ready to be distributed to the respective houses on Christmas Eve.
It has really been a source of amazement to us just what we have managed to access in the current situation. Every time we have come to a point when we had a ‘gap’ that needed filling, either something arrived in the mail or we found exactly the right thing in the shops. It’s been the same with food items. A few weeks ago I announced to the children that we would no longer be able to give them meat for a while as prices had rocketed so high (almost 4 times the previous price); we would now have to substitute with soya protein. Within a week someone gave us money with which to purchase meat for two weeks and then last Friday someone else sent us a huge quantity of beef which will last us for about 3 months, as well as cooking oil to last about the same length of time, and 20 litres of ice cream for Christmas. Tomorrow I am collecting another donation of ice cream, yoghurt and cheese. Our biggest headache at the moment is trying to find sufficient freezer and cold room space to store these blessings! As Fiona has been known to say at such times, ‘It’s hard work managing miracles, isn’t it?’!!
For one of our family this will be her last Christmas with us. Tsitsi (Mercy) came to us as a tiny sick baby just over 18 years ago. We have watched the miracle of her life unfold through these past years as she has grown into a strong and responsible young lady. Over the past couple of years she has made a number of familiarisation visits to her grandmother who lives in a rural area some distance from us and during the first week of January she will be moving on to live with Granny. She is excited but, understandably, somewhat nervous. Pray that these last couple of weeks with us will be really special for Tsitsi, that everything the Lord wants to do in her life before the move will be completed and that her adjustment into rural family living will go smoothly.
A month ago today I received an early Christmas present (or some might say, one more responsibility!) when I was ‘adopted’ by a stray cat. She was found locked inside our sewing room. We have no idea how she got inside as there are no holes and the door and windows were all shut tightly. The last time anyone can remember opening the door to the room was about 3 – 4 weeks prior to when she was found. Despite being rather dehydrated, she seemed in fairly good shape and we thought she’d just run off when we opened the door but, no, she followed me. Being rather a softy in regards to cats,
I fed her and of course she has taken up permanent residence. The vet checked her over and proclaimed her ‘a miracle’ for surviving as she did. I have named her Tiqvah, Hebrew for Hope. Some of the children are still a little nervous around her, not being used to cats, but others love visiting her, especially Anna (12) who is absolutely besotted and pops in almost every day for a kitty-cuddle.
As we close out this year, we still face incredible difficulties in Zimbabwe…fuel shortages, price increases, unavailability of goods, an incredibly complicated and confusing economic situation….but as we look back at the continuing, unfailing timely provision of our needs and the miracles of lives like Tsitsi’s, we move into 2019 with great hope and expectancy. Thank you for continuing on this journey of miracles with us.
May this Christmas also be a time of expectant hope for you!