Thursday, August 10, 2006


To all our dear friends and family:

Our furlough has come to an end and we are now on our way back to Botswana. We are not home yet – but we are back in Africa. All eleven pieces of our checked luggage failed to show up when we did. So, we stayed in the Baptist Guest House in Johannesburg, South Africa for two days and waited for them to come. It turned out to be a great blessing. We were supposed to drive 3 hours to friends of ours in Harrismith, South Africa straight from the airport for some R & R, but Heather was so relieved that we couldn’t leave without our luggage. Ankles swollen, and hurting, hardly sleeping an hour on the long flight, she wanted to cry just leaving the airport she was so exhausted. I think we went to bed that night at 7:00 pm – we don’t know what our kids were doing. J We were tired. Once we left WA and AZ, our bodies never adjusted, so we were going to bed in IL and GA at 1-2 in the morning.

We had a wonderful time seeing all of you. Our constant regret has been the short amount of time that we were able to spend with each of you. We are sad that there are some of you that we did not get to connect with at all.

We know our calling is that the Gospel must be preached throughout the world. We exist to KNOW HIM and MAKE HIM KNOWN, so we must get back to where God has called us to be and we are delighted to do that.

Since we have just completed our first furlough, we have been doing lots of thinking and evaluating. What will we do the same or different next time? We wanted to share some of our furlough thoughts with you.

First of all the definition of “furlough” is: “a leave of absence or vacation”. That is NOT what we did. J We don’t know the name for what we did, but furlough is definitely not it. Secondly, we are immensely grateful to have friends all over the map that are determined to have others hear about what God is doing in Botswana through Love Botswana Outreach Mission – and they will even feed and lodge a loud family of SIX to see that we get to share with their congregations. Thank you so much to all of you who received us and hosted us. Thirdly, we were greatly humbled by all the pastors that trusted us to participate in their worship service; many of them gave us the whole service. Thank you so much for your trust in us, or others in your congregation that spoke of us to you. Another thought that we have had is how privileged we are to be doing something that has eternal dividends. It is NEVER a waste of time to share the Gospel and invest in the lives of other people.

The last part of our evaluation is that we could have done a much better job at being clear about what our needs are. We desperately need more people that are willing to partner with us in this ministry on a monthly basis. We know that just living on this earth brings changes to individuals and their ability to give, so, our monthly partners change all the time. You have heard the ways that God is using us and we desire to be able to stay in the field. Currently we need around $1800 more a month than what is currently committed. We would encourage you to ask the Lord of the Harvest if He would have you be a part of our team. We have expenses that are just part of the reality of where God has called us – to this desert in the northern part of the country of Botswana. We have to pay rent, utilities, car and health insurance, like many of you. We have school fees for our children. But we also have high food and fuel costs. Beef is cheap, but all the other things are imported to our country and then shipped up north where we live. It currently costs us between $80-90 to fill our truck with fuel. We spend about $200 a month on drinking water. There are also times when there is a medical issue, which we actually have to go to another country for medical care.

You have heard us say that years ago Michael declared that when God told us to go back overseas, he didn’t want to have to raise our own support. We wouldn’t have it any other way now. We have found that the precious people that sacrifice and give to God’s work in Botswana through what we do are very much involved in this ministry – they care about the Outreaches, they care when our child has an unidentified rash, or an appointment with a neurologist in totally different country, some need for the ministry, or some other family concern or concern in our area.

We thank all of you who have invested in this ministry over the last 2 ½ and believed with us that God would provide to bring us back to the US for furlough. Those of you already committed monthly – thank you. For those of you that are not, we would ask you to consider becoming a monthly partner. Your testimony and belief that God still saves and desires a relationship with the people He created is alive and well in Botswana. We love you all and thank you for making us feel loved. God bless you all.

The Walkers

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