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Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Thotagauta Bible Study

A bit over a year ago Mrs. Hanti Badenhorst asked Jim and me to take over her Bible Study at Thotagauta Secondary School.  She was moving closer to her children in the Cape and wouldn't be able to continue.  There have been a few ups and downs, mainly spiritual opposition from a woman who was supposed to be helping with the Bible Study.  But God has opened some doors and we've been blessed to continue to minister there.

Due to some of the spiritual manipulation that has gone on, we've lost several senior-level girls and boys.  But a faithful core of young guys has developed.  Jim has mainly taken the lead for this discipleship opportunity, but with his 6 week trip to the States I had the privilege to step into that role.  The boys decided they wanted to study Revelation.  So we've been working on that for the past several weeks.

In the past our study has always taken place over their lunch break.  The government has only paid about 10% of the operation expenses that this school requires since August of last year.  That presents lots of challenges.  Most of the students don't have access to textbooks and the lack of funds has taken a toll on necessary maintenance.  But one of the biggest issues is that most of the boys that we work with come from homes that can't or aren't affording a lunch for them.  In most cases school kids here wake up between 4:30-5:00am.  They may or may not get a breakfast.  And with the lapse in funding, the school's lunch program closed.  Needless to say, studying is a challenge.

The good news is, we had more time with the boys since they weren't stuck waiting in line for some rice, porridge or beans.  But obviously the rice, porridge and beans aren't just a meal, they're essential.  So some fruit, nuts, biscuits and whatnot go a long way.  In fact, now that JT, DJ and the other guys are grown, they've shared how much the biscuits we brought to Bible study meant to them.  So the last several weeks something that so many take for granted, like a simple lunch for school kids, has become part of our Bible studies.

The good news is that there was reportedly a sizeable payout to the school recently so the lunch program may be restarting.  In the meantime, we're in exam season.  That means the normal school schedule is scrapped in favour of the various exams.  It also means that we have more time with the boys.  Which is good, because it's tough to cover anything meaningful in a 35 minute lunch break.
Necessity is the mother of invention.

Mohau, the young man that currently lives with us, is a connection from this Bible study.  He has taken a lot of leadership with the younger guys regarding communication and coordination.  It's enjoyable to see his example and affection for these boys.  And as he grows hopefully he'll continue to be a good example for them to follow.

Please pray for this Bible study, for Mohau, Dichabe, Thato, Matela and the rest of the guys.