Last night Paula was invited for the first time for tea with some ladies in CNP. She drove down at 7 pm last night to meet 5 ladies for tea and cake despite the freezing conditions. They spent the time in the house of a lady whose house had been deliberately burnt down a while back and whose court case against the perpetrator was about to draw to a close the following day. Paula was really humbled by the reception she received. The ladies simply cannot believe that she, a white woman, will drive alone to CNP at night and spend time with them. On top of this, it really dawned on her for the first time that for 3 of these ladies, this was the FIRST time since independence (10 years now!) that they had sat and had tea with a white person. They were incredibly nervous at first whilst history was being made, but soon warmed up as the conversation, cake and laughter flowed. God was so good as He allowed them to talk about being one in Christ as well as speaking plainly about the problems of gossip and dissension in such a small community.
The ladies really want Paula to come down every Tuesday night to meet up with women who cannot meet her during the daytime because of work commitments. Paula has said that she would be willing to meet every other Tuesday night as she has church leadership meetings twice a month. The spirit amongst the women is so high and the desire for change and for friendship is very real. They hope to share a light meal together as well as to chat and pray when they meet. Please pray for Paula as she starts Afrikaans lessons on 11 July. This, together with her weekly daytime visits to CNP is really going to help to speed along the process of changing the lives of women in CNP. Praise God for history in the making and for the huge open hearts of some of the women in CNP who have a vision for the future. It is so great that none of this happened at Paula's instigation! The evening ended with women who have NEVER sat with a white woman socially, hugging her and begging her to come back the following week - WOW!