On May 31st, 2012 the Maxwell family boarded a plane and moved to eSwatini (formerly known as Swaziland) to live at Project Canaan. I hope to update my blog on Saturday mornings and share, as honestly as I can, the highs and lows of our life in Africa. We are living on a farm in a remote part of this tiny Kingdom and are serving the community as well as the orphans and vulnerable children of the nation. Thanks for joining us.
Sign up to receive this blog by email
Saturday, December 28, 2019
Happy 9th birthday Gabriel!
Happy 9th birthday Rose!
When our children see something that looks the same as something
else they immediately say “same same”.It could be a twin, an article of clothing or a candy.It’s really cute, and we hear it all the
The past 48 hours here has been the “same” as the past 12
months and also the “same” as the past 10 years – filled with the highs and
lows of life in Eswatini.
On Thursday we had extreme heat here and the humidity was
unbearable.The heat caused the power in
the whole country to shut down and then come on for a bit and then off
again.The greenhouse was too hot for
anyone to walk in to it because the fans weren’t working.When the power grid for the Kingdom goes out
we have back-up generators that automatically turn on. On Thursday the
generator which provides the air for the green house (keeping the plants alive
and fish oxygenated) is the same one that keeps the 5,000 laying hens cool with
fans and it’s the same one that we use to milk cows and keep the milk cool (not
to mention the power for mechanic shop and many people who live there).We don’t have air conditioning in our
buildings so we depend on ceiling fans to keep us alive.
Well, that generator got so hot that it too overheated and shut
off. Within 30 minutes we started seeing chickens die from the heat.While one team worked on fixing the big
generator, another team got a small generator to the green house to try to at
least keep the fish in the Aquaponics systems alive, and another team went to
work at the laying hen barn to try to mist water on the birds and water the
roof to cool it down.Within an hour we
had lost 166 chickens to the heat. The power finally came back on and major crisis
was averted.Another day in Africa.
Early the next day I received a phone call from social
welfare about a newborn baby girl who was born on Sunday, December 22nd
and whose mother just ran away from the hospital, having given a false name for
herself so she was untraceable.Within an
hour Ian, Chloe and I were in the car to go and bring home a new baby girl
(whom we are naming Jaimee). Ian looked at me and said, “You will be 74-years-old
when Jaimee finishes High School with us”. Another 18-year commitment (God
willing).A sobering thought.
The lows are low and the highs are high. This year we lost
two babies, we had a massive fire that burned most of our property and we
watched people die of hunger or malnutrition throughout the country. We also celebrated the 10th
anniversary of Project Canaan, received 42 new babies who now call Project
Canaan “home” and were able to restart our agriculture program.
I could share similar highs and lows over the last decade,
but I think you get the drift, and I’m tired.
The one thing that has remained constant through the joy and
the sorrow has been the presence of God.We try not to fear, we try not to worry and we try not to be
discouraged, which would all be impossible without His peace that passes ALL
understanding.He is the King Kings and
the Lord of Lords and the Prince of Peace, and we rest firmly in that knowledge
and rely on His power.
This job is an impossible one by human standards, but NOTHING
is impossible to the creator of the universe.
This morning Chloe and I went down to hang out with the
kids.As we sat and chatted with some of
the older kids, others were doing chores around us, taking down Christmas
decorations, sweeping, weeding and even delivering toilet paper from storage to
each house.As I rounded the corner to
the swing sets I could hear our 4-year-old girls swinging and singing “Away in
a Manger” and it simply brought me joy.God
has a plan for each of these children just as He has a plan for Spencer and
Chloe and just as He has a plan for you.Don’t miss out on His plan because you think your plan is better. I
promise you, it isn’t.
Thank you to everyone who has read this blog in 2019 or
maybe even from the beginning. Thank you to everyone who sponsors
a child, gives to Heart for Africa
on a regular basis or has made a year-end
donation.We only have three more days to meet our year-end
goals that will allow us to continue accepting more children, growing more
food, feeding more children and employing more adults in 2020.
Will you partner with us by giving your best gift to HIM today?He is our provider, but He is inviting you to
be a part of His plan.