Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rockin' In Uganda

Rollin' In A Vehicle
March 15, 2011

As I was drafting this morning's update, I felt a gentle rocking of the chair in which I was sitting.  I looked over my right shoulder, expecting to see Pam having some early morning fun with me ... but, no one was there.  As the rocking continued I realized I was experiencing an earthquake.  What an amazing sensation; rather eerie actually.  Turns out Uganda had a 5.0 earthquake at 6:30 am.

What a dramatic reminder of the illusion that I'm in control of so much.  Life can take a 90 degree turn in a second and result in a whole new existence.

I loved the experience and took it as a snapshot of the desperate need Justin, Don, Trent, Abdu, Peter and I would have today as we shopped for a van in Kampala.  Some amazing people from Oklahoma donated a sizable amount of money to Next Generation Ministries for a van in Uganda.  We have kept quiet about it until today.

Newer example of Japanese import
Shopping for a vehicle in Uganda is so unlike shopping for one in the United States.  All cars and vans are imported since there are none manufactured here.  None of the cars are brand new.  Most are shipped from Japan.  They sit in a fenced in car lot called a "bond."  They are never allowed to be test driven.  The engine can be started and the vehicle inspected, but knowing what the transmission and drive train are like is completely a gamble.  The exterior and interior inspection, along with a look at the engine and the underside of the vehicle is about all you get.  We can compare vehicles based on these few aspects along with the year they were manufactured and how many miles are on them.

We found one we liked ... 2000 Toyota with 103,000 miles ... motor sounded tight and not over driven (but who knows) ... it was clean and looked like it had been maintained (actually had a manual and maintenance record in the glove box ... although writing in Japanese!).  Compared to the others we looked at today in Kampala and the ones we looked at earlier in Jinja, it was by far the best.

So, now we turn the negotiations over to our lawyer, Elijah, and get even more serious about this transaction to not let us get destroyed by an vehicle buying earthquake. It is a slippery and precarious task.  Would you please pray with us that God will provide His choice of a vehicle for us and we will be compliant partners with Him?

Read more details about our day's activities here.


  1. "Turn negotiations over to our lawyer"???? Just to buy a vehicle. Makes me realize just how much we take for granted here. Anytime we've been in the market to purchase a vehicle we can drive it, take it home for a day, drive it some more..... wheel and deal all on our own. I never thought of something so common as purchasing a vehicle could be so tedious. I am praying right now for God to give wisdom in choosing the proper vehicle for you needs! And maybe when I'm there next year I can take a ride in it!!! Praying for you all. Melvena E.

  2. Praying, believing and thanking God for the right vehicle for your ministry. HE knows your needs and HE gives his children good gifts!!!

  3. praying that God will lead, direct and clarify about your purchase.


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