OCT 2007

Michael & Cheryl Gayle on October 29, 2007

Showers of Blessings! That is the way we feel this month has progressed! We have been so blessed.

First of all, our short-term visitors have been such a big help to us. And it?s been fun having Pastor Dean Woodward and Pat Finn here from Grace Bible Church in Va. Beach, and also a small team from Derwood Bible Church in Derwood, MD. It?s like having family from home. We always feel so uplifted when our church families visit us.

Next it?s been big blessings to have the Briggs (Family Physician) Family arrive on the field for their first term. And the Ebersole (Pediatrics) Family and the Teusinks (Maintenance/Guest House) have returned from their home assignments. It helps to be able to spread the work load around.

The elections went smoothly. There were just some minor disturbances in Lomé because the winners were ?announced? before the counting was finished of Lomé proper. (Sounds like the US doesn?t it??) Some of the Togolese did not think that that was fair so some rioting started, but the military police stopped it before it got bad. From what we saw and heard, things did go pretty fairly for here.

Pray for our friend Atsou (pronounced like a sneeze---Achoooo). He is a young man of almost 18 (this New Years Eve). He has been helping us in our yard for a couple of years now after school hours. He and Michael do a Bible Study together on Weds afternoons. At the beginning of the month, he came to us that his family was making him ?leave? their family compound. He and his mom are the only Christians in their family. His father, who died about 2 years ago, was a big fetisher who was always giving Atsou a hard time about being a Christian. It turns out that one of Atsou?s uncles had gone to a fetisher to get a charm so that he could be a ?better? thief. The charm wasn?t helping him to do any better, so the uncle went back to the fetisher to complain. The fetisher told him that it wasn?t as powerful as it could be, because a Christian (Atsou) lives on his compound. So the uncle came back and said that Atsou had to leave. This would entail Atsou building a small mud/grass hut apart from the compound but on the family property.

Atsou was getting ready to start back full-time high school, and he certainly did not have the money for this. We had a few discussions and much prayer with Atsou. We couldn?t figure out why he couldn?t just go and live with another Christian family. He said that that would dishonor his family. Hhhmmmm. But in the end, Atsou went back to his family and asked them if he could wait until school is out next summer, and then he would build his hut away from the others. The uncle agreed to this, but he said that Atsou can not read his Bible on the compound any more except for Sundays. Please pray that this family would turn from their fetish ways and turn to Christ before next summer! Wouldn?t that be a powerful testimony! We are going to try to think of different reasons to go up the mountain to Atsou?s compound and share again with them God?s truth. (We have been there before.) Pray for Atsou not to become discouraged or frightened by their anger towards him.

One would ask, why doesn?t his mom speak up? She has no real say in the matter as her husband is dead, and since she?s only related by ?marriage? and not by ?blood,? the fetisher doesn?t feel that it is her that is making his charm weak. (Of course, it?s only a matter of time before the fetisher turns the blame to her too?..)

Pray for us as we are going to take a week?s vacation Nov 4-11 in Ghana. We are planning on doing nothing but sleeping, reading, praying, and working on our home assignment schedule as that is coming up June 2008 ? Jul 2009! Thanks for being so faithful!

For His Glory,

Michael & Cheryl Gayle, ABWE
Togo, W. Africa