A few weeks back Nathan and I went on a short vacation. We decided a trip to Khutsi would do the trick. We packed, made the proper arrangements, and made sure the vehicle was in good working order. Then we departed for a short getaway in the Kalahari. We left on Monday after a busy work weekend and drove past Molepolole.
viagra soft tabs canada
It was a few hour drive of good road… then things changed. The now dirt road became bumpy; people were driving on the opposite sides of the roads to avoid the giant pot holes that sprinkled the lane we were meant to be on. Then the dirt road came and subsequent brain damage from all the bumping. I have never been on roads that were so wash-boarded before.
We arrived at the game reserve border, checked in, and were told that our camp site was 2 hours from the front gate and that it was a beautiful campsite looking over the largest salt pan. We inquired about what we really wanted to know, if there were any lion sightings in that area. We were told not there but in the camp region that was next to the one we were in, which was about a 30-45 minute drive. We were satisfied we could drive there and see them and I would not be terrified that they would be outside our tent.
We began our 2 hour journey to our camp sight. The deep sand double-track dirt path started out great with the 4-wheel drive on, which was a treat and gave our bodies time to re-settle after the trip in…or so we thought. The soft part of the drive was short lived and our bones had to remain in a state of confusion. We made it to our camp site, which was beautiful and there were nice facilities there that we did not expect. There was a nice and clean compost toilet and a bucket shower! It was wonderful. We sighted only a few animals on the drive in; we saw a badger and a few springbok, and what I loved, we saw giraffe! We were also pleasantly surprised to see another group of 4–5 giraffe crossing the pan near our campsite as the sun was setting. It was breathtaking and we didn’t want to stop watching.
We set up camp and thought we would go for a drive down the pan, relax and see if we could see anything. We get into the truck, go to turn it on… and nothing. Our bodies were not the only things that got jostled out of sorts, our battery did as well. Nathan went to work on trying to get it going but we realized it had come completely disconnected and that we drove the last 45 minutes or so on a disconnected battery which had completely drained. Our hands were tied. It was getting dark and decided we would wait and see to it in the morning.
We had a peaceful evening by the fire and went to bed early. I was slightly freaked after having seen a jackal come into our camp and I wondered what else was lurking out there. However, I was forced to stick my head out at the beautiful moonrise that happened over the pan. The colours were spectacular and completely un-capturable on a camera.
We woke up early with the wonderful and interesting hornbill birds, which became our companions during our time there. Nathan tried the truck early as to hopefully go down to the pan to see if we could spot any big animals. And…nothing. Nathan did some more tinkering as I got breakfast together. The truck was not cooperating. Then we knew what to do. We had to pray. Knowing that things that might seem impossible to us, are possible to God. We prayed, we laid hands on the battery and prayed. We then went to try the battery, and… nothing. The truck wasn’t ready to go yet, so we went and had breakfast. After breakfast we tried one more time and there was still no beautiful roar of the engine.
Driving in we had seen there were people in the closest campsite to us. So we walked the 15-20 minute dirt road armed with a sharp-ish stick to see if they could help. When we got there we discovered we had just missed them. Their fire was still warm from breakfast, but they had packed up and left. We were now out of options, no cell phone reception, and though we had been sure to let them know at the gate when we expected to be out, the park had informed us that vehicles were an issue for them so they wouldn’t be patrolling, and we knew we were now the only ones in that area.
We got back to our campsite and just enjoyed it. We read, and watched our hornbill friends, for which we made up different scenarios. For example, when the crows came and threatened their territory they appeared to be banding together to scare them off. We just relaxed. We trusted that God would take care of us, we just didn’t know how.
I know that God is leading our story, but I really didn’t specifically know why he would strand us in the Kalahari. I had time to contemplate this, while watching the beautiful birds and a mongoose. What I came up with was this: as we were trying to see the big things in the form of animals (the lions, cheetahs and leopards), God wanted us to see the smaller things, the hornbills, and tiny beautiful birds and the mongoose. Maybe less impressive, but beautiful and also created by God. This is not profound but it made me think, where else in my life do I practice this. Looking for the bigger things and missing all the small beautiful things.
I struggle with feeling inadequate, with feeling I’m not doing enough with the blessings I have in my life and not doing enough for God. I struggle with doubts that even trying to follow Jesus and his example I fall short. Well, was this God telling me that life is made of big and small things both equally beautiful and meaningful as long as it is given to Him? Was He saying to find Him in everything, even in the struggles and obstacles that our placed in our life? If I leave Botswana with only accomplishing a deeper understanding of what God wants from me, or a relationship with a woman I would never have met if it was not for obeying and coming to Botswana, will I be failure? Will I have failed God?
Perhaps this was God humbling us, showing us that we can plan, organize, fix up the truck, have extra jerry cans and have cell phones to call for help but ultimately this is still His world. This is His creation and the only person we have to call upon for help is the One who knows everything and created all things.
God provided for us better than anything we could have done for ourselves. The day came when we were supposed to be out of the park and the truck, no surprise to us, was still not running. We were living in a very tangible way by faith. We knew the park didn’t have access to vehicles, we knew no one was in our area of the Kalahari, we had no clue if there was anyone else in the park at all, and if they were there was no reason for them to come to our campsite in the far reaches because the lion pride was the camp region before us. We had told our neighbours in Gaborone when we were expecting to be back and that if we weren’t there at that time we were likely stuck. We had notified the Khutse front gate as well. We did not know what was going to happen but we had peace knowing that God would provide.
Nathan thought we should pray and fast from food for the day, and I completely agreed. So we prayed and began the fast agreeing we would break the fast at sun down. The morning came and went, and we were making the most of our extra time. We relaxed looking out over the beautiful pan, reading and just spending quiet time together. By late afternoon Nate went and took a quick nap and I continued to read and then we both heard a sound. I turned around and a beautiful sight came into by view. A Land Rover! The couple had come to see the pan and the campsite to see if they felt like moving there the next day. They explained it was a last minute decision to come for drive and they were not planning to come until the next day and they thought they were the only ones in the park. They went on to say when they were at the front gate the park attendant said the park’s one vehicle had just left for Gaborone. Our new arrivals were convinced we would have been stranded for a while and were very lucky.
This wonderful couple agreed to help us and they hooked up the jump cables and began to give us a boost. However, the gentleman didn’t think it would work because of what had happened to the battery and how long it was dead for. He turned out to be right. Nathan and the gentleman were talking about how options and what would happen next as I was busily going about camp packing.
This South African couple had just come from desert races, and not only that they helped organize them and set up the routes, so they had tools in their campsite and an extra battery in their truck! Nathan had a wonderful MacGyver tool and managed to get the old battery out and the new one in, which was able to charge the alternator, then put our battery back in place and the alternator was able to charge our struggling battery! It was wonderful. God answered our prayer so fully! He sent the perfect people to come and help us. They knew exactly what to do. Anyone else may not have had an extra battery and may have left once the boost didn’t work. Also, we didn’t need to be towed to their campsite, it was all done there. How great is our God!
We were talking to them for a little after and they suggested we shouldn’t try to leave now as it was getting dark (driving at night is prohibited) and we should wait till morning. They suggested we drive out to their camp area as there were numerous open sites we could go to. We agreed and it gave us one last chance to see lions, too! So we drove around the pan we were at and then drove to the other area. It felt good to be driving! We stopped at their site to thank them and to let them know where we would be and give them our number if they ever needed a place to stay in Gaborone.
We set up camp at a new site. Looking about we saw lion prints, so we thought we would see some for sure. We got a fire prepared but not lit, made some coffee and drove to the watering hole where all the sightings were happening. While there we unexpectedly saw a truck zooming around the water and quickly out. We looked at each other and hoped they weren’t going to where we had set up. We convinced ourselves they weren’t so we stayed there for a bit more and went back close to dark. When we drove up we had our question answered. We pull up to a circle of RV’s all around our campsite, 10 to 15 chairs set up around the fire, people busily setting up the kitchens on wheels. Our small tent and 2 chairs looked so out of place.
Immediately I was upset, so Nathan went and talked to the gentleman that approached. He explained what had happened and why we had set up in this site that they had apparently booked. They understood but there was no invite to stay so we packed up in the dark, as they piled our fire wood and kindling beside us. It was a really humbling experience for me, as they stared and spoke around us in Afrikaans so we had no clue what they were saying. We drove off into the night in this lion populated area to find a new site. We found one and set up. After speaking together I realized it was another learning moment. God had showed us grace through the couple that helped us and this was our turn to be gracious in an uncomfortable situation. We made dinner and ate and when we finished we saw a vehicle driving on the path and pull on to the path leading toward our site. After our days of not seeing a single soul we were suddenly inundated with vehicles out here in the bush. We looked at each other again and wondered what was next; would we have to move again?
It was 2 park rangers, the woman who helped us at the front gate and a gentleman. She had come to find us! She said she heard very well what we had said in regards our departure date from the park and the unlikely potential that we would get stranded. We were so humbled by her kindness. As soon as she was off duty the parks truck had come back from Gaborone and she had driven the hour and half (willing to drive the 4 hours there and back to come find and help us at our original site). We were able to explain what had happened, apologized for their extra trip and thanked them profusely while offering them some snacks around our fire. She was thankful they didn’t have to go all the way to the other campsite. They stayed a little bit and then drove the hour and a half back to the front gate. They showed us God’s grace, mercy and love maybe without knowing it. She was inconvenienced way viagracanadapharmacybest.com more than we were by having to move a campsite over.
God is so wonderful! He provided so much more than just help in this getaway from the city. He provided lessons in God’s Kingdom. He taught us more about what it means to be gracious, and He showed us what it looks like to love and help strangers which we, as strangers, had done for us.