The God of the City is the God of the Desert


I will use the first line of the chorus of the Botswana theme song

“For the God of the city, is still God in the Desert”!! So True!!

For me the idea of going to Botswana was something Niesje (my granddaughter) and I spoke about in 2016 – but things just didn’t seem to fall into place then.  But this year when mention was made of ‘Botswana Mission’, I had a very clear message from God saying that this is what we needed to do, the time was right, so I mentioned to Charles & Graham one Sunday morning that Niesje and I were interested in going. No time was wasted and Monday morning (first thing) the forms were sent over on e-mail.

Still not absolutely certain that this was what God was wanting from me, I carried on regardless, trusting that I was doing the right thing! I took Niesje with me and we went to the first training session, and we r+eally enjoyed it, but still I held back – money needed to be paid, R2000 per person (and even though it was often said ‘don’t let the cost keep you away’) I was proud (as we sometimes can be) and wanted to pay for Niesje and myself.  So I decided that I would dig into my savings and pay the R4000 for the two of us. (Quite a big decision).  I paid the first R2000 and that meant that there was no chance of backing out!

The Lord in His amazing greatness, made sure that I got the message loud and clear, that there was no turning back, (He wanted me to go to Botswana!)  And within a day or two after I had made the first payment – just over R4000 was paid into my bank account – where the money came from doesn’t really matter, but the amount does! Exactly the amount that was needed. Does our God not work in mysterious ways – Botswana trip paid for – done and dusted!

Now to wait and see where the Lord would lead us – Khekhenye, the place in the desert. Where we camped, was nothing except sand, lots of sand, thorns, lots of thorns, one toilet and one shower, usually cold, but, luckily there was water and a Church! WOW!

The first two days were hut to hut visits to the women of the village, and I went with Dolly and Bridgette. This was very interesting and very rewarding, but tough, as I didn’t know the language and sometimes felt a little left out of the conversation, but the message was always clear – God loves you and wants you to be His child, no matter who you are or what you have done. The women of the village were always willing to listen and were very welcoming, we were always invited into their space!!

But the children!! That is another story – from the very first day when they came to see what was going on and who had come to visit, there were smiles all around and these children just crawled into our hearts, never to crawl out again.

They are just always so happy, happy for a game of ball played, happy for a story told, happy for a snack they received and most of all happy for a show of love and attention towards them.  They loved having a “high five” as it showed you care! These little ones could recite the Lord’s Prayer in English, without a mistake – amazing!!

What really touched my heart, was the Sunday morning Church service.  My tears freely flowed as I walked into the Church, (which is a building with a sink roof, conveyor belting on the floor and few chairs along the wall) yet when they sang, the children and the adults, they praised the Lord with loud happy voices, they danced to the Lord with an abandonment that is hard to find.  We who have all we need, battle to sing and praise the Lord with joyous hearts, and to be thankful for all that the Lord has provided.

I learnt a very valuable lesson in Botswana, and for that I will be ever grateful to the Lord – I had a bad habit of saying to those who visited my home for the first time “welcome to my humble home”. I saw many a humble home in Botswana and people accepted what they had! Without a grumble!  I will always be thankful that I have “a home” which has all I need, and for the valuable lesson that the Lord taught me – to accept that which He has provided for me with a grateful and thankful heart.

Thank you Lord for allowing me to go to Botswana, and teaching me valuable lessons there! I know now for sure that “The God of the City is still the God of the desert”.  He is where we need Him, in the City or in the Desert, in Church or in the street, He is always there!! Amen.

Joyce Botha





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