A letter from Nancy Dimmock in Lesotho
July 27, 2012
Do you remember the old Sunday School song/hymn, “I Serve a Risen Savior”? Some of the words are no longer politically correct, and I’m going to change the individual “I” to the communal “we,” but these words are so meaningful for us right now:
We serve a risen Savior. He’s in the world today.
We know that He is living, whatever men may say.
We see His hand of mercy, we hear His voice of cheer,
And just the time we need Him, He’s always near.
He lives! He lives! Christ Jesus lives today. . .
It is the end of July 2012, and we are at the Baptist Guesthouse in Johannesburg, South Africa. We see God’s hand of mercy in so many of the details of the past several months. He was surely there in the packing up—which we had to do a couple of times before final departure. We left Mission Haven in mid-June and made a temporary home base in North Carolina. Mission Haven needed time to clean, repair and prepare for missionary colleagues from Brazil, coming into the house we had been using. This put us in place for some extra special family times together during our final six weeks in the States. What a joy and a blessing.
And we saw God’s hand of mercy in final itineration responsibilities. We had spoken in more than 50 churches throughout the year and all over the U.S. but had not had the opportunity to visit several supporting churches in California. Frank was able to go for 10 days in late June and was so blessed by renewing friendships and making new contacts for World Mission there. He was also a Missionary Advisory Delegate to the PC(USA) General Assembly in Pittsburgh during the first week of July. This was his first opportunity to experience our denomination’s system of governance. He was impressed with the sense of order and the hard work exhibited by all of the commissioners and delegates assigned to special committees. He was also impressed with the skills of the new moderator in maintaining a prayerful perspective on sensitive issues. God was merciful in keeping channels of communication open between the deeply divided parts of this part of His Body.
And finally we saw God’s hand of mercy in the safe and successful trip across the ocean with four of our eight kids and 24 footlockers of books, clothes and supplies!
Frank rented a van and drove the footlockers to Lesotho yesterday. God’s hand of mercy was so evident when they were let through customs (after lengthy discussion :) ) without having to unload and inspect and value everything! He and son Andrew unloaded them into the small guesthouse in our backyard. They found the house still FULL of children—12 of them. This means that we will need to book into a local guesthouse for a while, as we help the Ministry of Hope Lesotho program move out of our house into their new facility, which is still being renovated. But even in this timing we see God’s hand of mercy. Four of the children are awaiting new adoptive families, due to arrive this coming Thursday or Friday! SO, it is much better for them NOT to move right before making this huge adjustment into their new families. Please pray that these placements will be a time of JOY and WONDER for the children and parents alike, and that the new bonds will form quickly.
Progress is being made on the new Ministry of Hope house. The walls have been replastered and painted, kitchen and bathroom fixtures and cabinets have been put in. Plumbing and electrics are done, but they are awaiting the electric and water utility companies to come and connect them. These are government offices, and notoriously slow. Please pray with us for a “fast track” on these items. Another priority will be to research, purchase, haul and install a security fence around the property. Beds are being made at the local prison workshop and the ministry will need to purchase some appliances and basic furniture. Once all of that is done, THEN the children and staff can move into their new place AND we can move back into ours! Please pray for our patience and perseverance through the days and weeks ahead!
We are in the midst of winter in this part of the world. We hear that there is snow in the higher mountain ranges of Lesotho, and it remains below freezing at night throughout the region. We are wearing our heavy coats, inside and outside, as there is no central heating here. Leaving 100+ degrees in Atlanta a few days ago makes for quite a change!
In the midst of our family’s logistical uncertainties and mental, emotional, and physical adjustments, we are so grateful for the prayer support of our wonderful family and friends back in the U.S. and the support we receive through the PC(USA). By covering excess baggage, moving expenses, and transit housing, we hear God’s “voice of cheer” spoken through our denomination’s structures and the numerous congregations that partner with us in ministry here. THANK YOU so very much!
Frank and Nancy, Andrew, Alifa, Isaac and Jackson Dimmock