Thursday, March 29, 2012

smoak signals 2

Another cool email from Pamela Smoak, missionary to Tanzania:

Manufactured in Europe, it immigrated at an early age to East Africa.  One day as it was sitting under the bright lights of a shop in Nairobi, Kenya, a missionary wife named Shirley Droke strolled by checking out the buttons, cycles, dimensions and advantages of each machine.  One thing she checked was the price because Shirley had in her purse money from the Ladies’ Division of the UPCI to buy a dryer and Shirley was a good steward of what she had received.
Happy in Shirley’s home on a hill under sprawling shade trees, the dryer was saddened when it was disconnected a few years later and put in storage.  Shirley and her husband Walter Droke were returning to their home in Tennessee.
But one day, the storeroom door opened and Karen Crumpacker, a missionary wife who had just transferred back to Kenya from Malawi, dusted off the dryer and took it home with her.  A couple of happy years of cycles passed before the dryer broke a part that the repairman said was not available.  Back in storage it went.
After a few months another repairman looked at the dryer and said, “I can fix this if you want.”  Karen agreed; the dryer was repaired; but it sat near the new dryer watching it get all the attention, gathering dust.
Late one afternoon, Karen’s husband Jim uncovered the dryer and loaded it into the back of his Sheaves for Christ vehicle.  Not knowing where it was going, the dryer bumped, jostled and tilted its way across Kenya and south into Tanzania.  Arriving at the home of missionaries Richard and Pamela Smoak, the dryer was met with excitement and rejoicing.  For a minute, it thought it was going to get a kiss from Pamela who had been drying everything on a clothes line through rain, dust storms clouds of mosquitoes.
Its adopted life in Tanzania was happy and fulfilled until the Smoaks’ new dryer was installed a year later.  Back in storage!  Feeling neglected and forgotten in the dark container, the dryer looked out the doors to sunlight when the container would be opened occasionally, longing for the life of heat and spinning for which it was created.
Missionary wife Martha Johnson, thrilled with the long awaited resident’s permit to the unevangelized country of Rwanda, was offered the dryer if she wanted it.  “Of course,” was the reply.  So tomorrow, Louis Johnson and Richard Smoak will load the dryer in the back of Louis’s SFC vehicle and export it to Rwanda where it will continue “working for the Lord”.
At last, new life, new country, grateful veteran missionary wife, more tossing and drying as intended by the Ladies’ Division and the thousands of sacrificial donors in North America.  Three countries, four missionary wives and life is not over, yet!

© 2009-2012 by Melani Brady Shock

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