28 July 2015

A Ship Out of Water: a few dry dock pictures

photos are from various sources 
(the joy of community, right?! sharing is caring.)

That green dot in the middle on the far right side of the last picture is a person...just a little size perspective for you.

We're hoping and praying that this ship will be able to go back in the water SOON...having to stay in dry dock much longer will mean major changes to lots of timelines, schedules and plans (including surgeries that have already been scheduled).

Our understanding is that the major issue is with the propellers - so if you happen to want to pray for blessing, favor, restoration and success for our propellers (and for those working on them!), that would be such a gift!

Surely there will be more to come.

16 July 2015

Meanwhile in Madagascar

As we’ve been in Durban experiencing shipyard, plenty is still going on in Madagascar! 

Our Advance Team has been working to make sure things are ready for our return in early August.  Among other things, they are overseeing projects, continuing to meet with government officials and are keeping an eye on our dock space and the warehouse where plenty of equipment is being stored.

Jeremy, Scott, Harmen, Andrea and Franck...what a dynamic and special team!  
The Mada 2 Advance Team
The Screening Team is currently assembling in the capital city of Tana and will make massive efforts in screening before the ship ever sets sail from Durban.  This team is incredible – flying and riding all over the country full of so much compassion, kindness and excellence as they find the patients that will come to the ship over the course of these next 10 months.  
pc: mirjam
Below are pictures of a poster that has been distributed throughout Madagascar announcing all of the selection sights and dates (feel free to print off the middle picture and pray throughout the year for the screenings taking place!)(and many thanks to the lovely Andrea Diallo for taking and sending pictures of the poster).

The members of the screening team work tirelessly and relentlessly.  Their hearts are huge and dedicated as they meet with patient after patient – wanting with everything in them to be able to offer every individual a yellow appointment card but bravely facing the fact that this ship cannot help every individual. 
pc: mercy ships
Because of all of the work of the Advance Team, and now the screening team, the Africa Mercy will really be able “to hit the ground running”  when we arrive back in Madagascar.

We’d love for you to join us in praying for the Advance Team and the Screening Team – for endurance and strength, for health and safety, for wisdom in their decision making, for courage and hope.  Most of all pray that they will experience the love and presence of God in real and tangible ways – and that His love will overflow from their smiles and words and touches into the lives of every person they encounter (will you please pray that for the Cash Family as well?).

Surely there will be more to come. 

15 July 2015

It's a wild life: Safari & Aquarium

There are far too many moments in life that make us go "What in the world?  How is it that we're HERE getting to do THIS?" (see previous post!)  There are too many delightfully wonderful moments that make us stop and remember that our God is good and He gives good gifts.

The past few weeks have been full of those...
  • How is that we're on a ship sailing on the Indian Ocean?
  • How is it that we're walking on a beach in Durban, South Africa?
  • How is it that we're having a South African braai by a pool in the middle of winter?
  • How is it that we're seeing giraffes and lions (well, one lion...eating a wildebeest)?
  • How is it that we're inches away from some of the most amazing and beautiful creations we've ever seen?
The only way these things have happened is because God has lead us step by step...and we've tried to listen and obey as He leads.  We only want to be where God wants us.

And it just so happens that 2 of the places where He has wanted us in the not too distant past were on a day long safari enjoying His creation and at an Aquarium called Ushaka.


Fun Facts: 
A group of zebras is called a dazzle .
A group of giraffes is called a tower or a journey.
A group of rhinos is called a crash.
And, according to our delightful friend Lauren, a rhino is just a chubby unicorn.

We learn something new everyday!

uShaka Sea World/Aquarium

She's coming out of her shell a little bit. 

Eli was absolutely enamored with the sharks!

Lion Fish
Pineapple Fish

little fish would come and nibble away at your fingers...

Nope...don't know who this guy is.

Creative seating in the cafe
Waiting on the dolphin show
We made it on the big screen (kids are in the lower right corner)

Names/Codes of the female penguins
Sitting with the men made of trash

Sometimes where He wants us is pleasant beyond our wildest imagination.  Sometimes where He wants us is tough and trying.  Sometimes where He wants us is routine and "normal."  Sometimes where He wants us is unlike anything we've ever known before.

No matter where He wants us, He is with us.  And that's where we want to be....with Him.

Surely there will be more to come.