As for me, I know of nothing else but miracles. - Walt Whitman

Friday, July 1, 2016

Our Trip to Ethiopia, Day 7

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Today was Malia's 10th birthday! She was so excited to spend it in Ethiopia.

After breakfast and devotions, we headed back to Metekle. These girls sang happy birthday to Malia when we got there! 

We worked all morning carrying water and stacking blocks...Alyssa carried 200 blocks up the rickety ramp today!

Here is the project contractor on some rickety scaffolding high above the ground. This guy had guts!

Mixing cement:

At one point, Malia got snatched away by some girls and sat in on one of their classes for awhile.

 She really wanted her hair braided on her birthday, so Wass asked some of the teachers if they would do it for her. She was thrilled, and I think they had fun messing with ferengi hair!

When we rounded up the team at the end of the day to head back to the hotel, Chris couldn't find his phone. We knew that it had been in the side pocket of my backpack, but it was no longer there. We searched and searched to no avail. Several people had seen three teenage boys loitering around the work site, and it was decided that those boys had seen the phone and had waited for the right opportunity to take it. They lucked out when the bags were left unattended for a few minutes. I had a very sick feeling in my stomach...why hadn't they just taken my whole backpack? It had all of our passports in it, plus hundreds of dollars in cash. Worse yet, Quintin had been sitting in his stroller right beside my bag. What if they had taken him???

The phone is not belongs to Chris's work. I felt bad since they have already replaced it once this year, and was frustrated that we had lost all the photos and videos from the week. But we figured it would be next to impossible to find. I said a quick prayer asking God to help us find the boys that took it. Even if we couldn't get the phone back, I thought it would be neat to meet the boys and share the gospel with them. Tadesse immediately started calling people, and soon a police officer and several others showed up to help. As they stood there talking, a little boy (one of the Metekle students) joined them and said, "I know those boys...I know where they stay, I just don't know their names." What a brave little guy! He climbed in the van with Wass, Tadesse, and the policeman, and they drove away to search. The rest of us walked back to the hotel to shower and eat dinner.

Here, the kids are leaving school for the day. They all lined up at the flagpole and sang a song, then filed out one by one. It was so neat and orderly!

As we sat down for dinner, Mathewos got a call that they had found Chris's phone! I think we were all shocked. Chris went with Mathewos and Yohannes to talk to the 2 thieves (the third one got away...he was older and more street-wise.) Although the boys had already thrown away the SIM card, Chris got his phone back and used the opportunity to talk to them about Jesus. He also asked that they be given the minimum sentence allowable by law. Mathewos figured they would have to spend 6 months in prison. Chris thought that the boys were maybe 13 or 14 years old. They made a big mistake, and I really don't think they understood how valuable Chris's phone is. They had tried to sell it at a pawn shop. The police needed to keep the phone for one more day to use as evidence, and told Chris he could pick it up later in the week.

After dinner, we visited for awhile with Richard, Phil, Rachael, and Wass before heading to bed.

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