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Saturday, July 25, 2015

Does God really care about the little stuff? (Oh, and two newborn babies arrived today)

On Thursday Ian and I drove a group of people back to Johannesburg to start their 15 – 30 hour journeys home.  We decided to drop them off, run some errands in Joburg, go out for dinner on a “date night” and then take a leisurely drive back to Swaziland on Friday.

One of the errands was to look for “Bumbo” seats, which we need at the El Roi Baby home.  Our team had found them in Swaziland, but they cost around $50 US each, and we need 20 of them so the thought of spending $1,000 US on seats for our babies was tough. 

Ian and I found them for $38 US so I called back to Swaziland to cancel our order, which, was only minutes from having a deposit put down!  Ian stood at the check out counter at Baby City and asked to speak with the Manager about getting a discount for making such a large purchase AND of course share WHO was going to be using those seats.   It’s quite common here to ask for a discount and it almost always results in a 10% reduction in price, which would then have taken us to under $35 US per chair.

Just then a lady walked up to Ian and told him that she was the Sales Representative for the Bumbo competition chair.  She said she had overheard his conversation about the babies in Swaziland and had already called her boss to see if they could help us out. She explained that their chairs are specifically designed for an African baby’s shape and they were manufactured in South Africa, then she gave us the phone number for her boss and said that “Louise” was waiting for our call.

I called Louise at the Snappi Baby Seat company and she told me that they would be happy to sell us the seats at her cost and deliver them to anywhere in Johannesburg!  Well, her cost was $10 US and since their warehouse in Pretoria was on our way home to Swaziland we said we would stop by and pick them up.  Forty minutes later we were at the Snappi warehouse and decided to buy 40 of them (store 20 in the baby home storage container) and spent $400 US. Then she gave us another 10 seats for free for a total of 50.  

To review the numbers, we were to spend $1,000 US on 20 seats.  We ended up spending $400 US on 50 seats for an average cost of $8 US. 

It was a chance meeting at a Baby City store in Johannesburg.  We stopped at several other stores before we stopped there, but the timing was perfect and we saved a lot of money.

Yesterday we clearly saw the hand of God and it made me ask the question, why?  Why would God care about the price of chairs? Isn’t it all His money anyway? We work diligently to stretch every penny that is donated to us by our donors, but ultimately we believe that those funds come from Him.  But when this story unfolded yesterday we felt God so very close to us in the van.  When we told Louise the story of some of our children she wept.  When we showed her the photos of Deborah’s burned body, she wept, and gave us more Snappi Baby Chairs.

Was our meeting at Baby City a “chance” encounter?  Was our drive through Pretoria a “chance” drive?  I don’t think so.

“What’s the price of two or three pet canaries? Some loose change, right? But God never overlooks a single one. And he pays even greater attention to you, down to the last detail—even numbering the hairs on your head!  Luke 12:7 The Message Bible

And in other news … we got two more babies this morning!!  A newborn girl named Patricia and a newborn boy named Ezra, both abandoned by their mothers. Ezra was left in an empty garbage can/drum and Patricia put in a plastic bag and dumped in a pit latrine after birth.  The babies were born 3 days apart and both have had positive HIV rapid tests and are on treatment. They are home at the El Roi Baby home where they will be loved and cared for.


El Roi, the God who sees, saw us at Baby City, He saw Louise in her warehouse and He saw Ezra and Patricia when they were abandoned by their mothers, and He saw the mother’s in their hopelessness.  It’s hard to grasp the depth and breadth of His love for us, but I know that God really does care about the little stuff.  I hope you do too

Live from Swaziland … we have 98 babies now.


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