Contest: God vs. Witch Doctor – for kids
Here is a story of our stollen water pump – written for my grand daughters. Parental Guidance required…
We have a friend in the village named P__ (name hidden). He used to drink too much beer and lie and hit his wife and do all kinds of bad things. Then someone from one of the Mandate Teams met him and his wife, shared the stories of Jesus and P__ decided he wanted to follow Jesus and quit his sinning. So we baptized him in the Zambezi River and kept teaching him the Bible and encouraging him to live a good Christian life. And he did – for a while. But he always liked that beer too much, so he would now and then drink too much and get in a fight with someone, or hit his wife or steal something. But then soon after he would be sorry for what he did and he would come and do bible study with us and promise his wife he would be better.
One day I decided to hire him – he just needed work, I thought. Surely if he had something good to do with his energy he would act better. But still he would be great for some of the time, but then he would do something bad – almost always after drinking too much beer. And he would come late for work or sleep on the job. So eventually I got tired of him doing stupid things on the job and I fired him. He was very sad. His wife was mad at him for being so stupid as to loose a good job.
About 2 weeks later in the middle of the night someone jumped over our fence, snuck thru the property, hiding from the night guard – maybe the night guard was sleeping – and broke into the tool shed and took our water pump! We found some foot prints in the sand the next morning – it looked like two or three guys did it, but we had no idea who!
All of our workers came to us the next day and decided they wanted to go to “The Witch Doctor” to find out who stole the pump.
You have never seen a witch doctor – they don’t have them in America. These are kind of strange people who the villagers come to when they have a problem – like maybe someone is sick or can’t have a baby. Maybe someones crops keep dying or their cattle. People here believe that all of these things happen because someone put a curse on them or put some bad medicine on the ground by their door and they stepped over it, and that is why these bad things are happening. So the witch doctor is supposed to have super powers – he will shake his head and make strange noises, beat some drums and throw little bones on the ground and rattle some beads or cook some strange smelling things – and after all of this, he will tell the person that some fat relative has put a curse on them; or someone is jealous of them and said some evil things against them that is making the bad things to happen. Sometimes witch doctors tell people to put on a special bracelet or they will make a cut in their skin and rub some magic medicine in it. This is all very scary and strange. To tell the truth, it doesn’t seem to work at all – but all the people believe in it still. They believe in it more than in going to a regular doctor.
So my workers wanted to go to the witch doctor and have him do some magic and find out who stole the pump and where it is. Well I told them that in the Bible it says you are not supposed to go to a witch doctor – because that is like working with Satan! So I told them please don’t do that.
Joseph, our night guard, decided that if we could not ask a witch doctor then we would just ask God, and He would show us where it is! So we prayed right there and the workers were all excited about God helping us find the pump.
So the workers started asking people in the village if there was any idea of who stole the pump. Everyone had an idea who might have done it – but there were no real clues. We kept praying. Then one day a man who sneaks around in the woods shooting animals that he is not supposed to shoot – we call him a poacher – saw two men sneaking around in the woods carrying a water pump! It was P__! and he had a friend. So God made a big miracle that someone was in the woods when P__ came sneaking by with the water pump.
But we did not know where P__ was – his wife said he was gone – she did not know where, or when he would be back. So we needed another miracle to find him. So we kept praying.
The next day the workers asked to go to town for a few days to hang out in the bars and bad places of town to see if they could find P__. I let them go after we prayed. That night I was driving home from the village with a bunch of people in the truck, and one of the guys sitting in the back saw P__ on the side of the road! Praise God! Another miracle – we found him! But we still did not have him or the water pump. So we prayed again.
I turned the car around and went back to talk to P__. I stopped and tried to get P__ to get in the car to go with us to talk to the police. Instead P__ and his friend started running away from us thru the dark alley ways. A couple of the guys in the back of the truck jumped out and started running after them. I could see that they would never catch them so I yelled “Help! Thief! Help! Thief!” Sure enough, all the people on the sides of the road started running after P__ too! I jumped back in the car and drove down the little windy dark alley ways. I came around a corner and there in front of me was a big crowd of people all swarming around P__ in the middle of them. They had caught him! Another miracle. But we still did not have the pump, so we knew we needed to keep praying.
In Africa when someone steals something everyone is very mad at him. They get so mad that if someone yells “thief!” people will come running, catch the man and start beating him up! Sometimes they get mad enough to kill him! When I saw this mob of people around P__ I was afraid for him. They were punching him in the face, they had bricks in their hands and trying to hit him on the head with them. One guy had a metal pipe about 3 feet long (have your dad show you how long that is) and he was hitting P__ on the legs with it – like right on the shin! When I saw all this happening I wanted to protect P__, so I went right into the middle of the crowd and started pulling on P__ arm to get him out of the mob and into my car where we could take him to the Police. When I was doing this the guy with the pipe took a swing at P__ and hit my leg instead. Now it is a week later and my leg is still very sore and I can’t walk too far on it. I think of poor P__ – he got hit many times and I only got hit once! Eventually I got him into the car but people were still crowding in after him, hitting him in the face. They were yelling, “You thief! You have stollen everything from us! You thief! You have taken everything we have!”
So we drove him to the police. When we got to the police station – just a little shack in a poor part of town – there was no electric there so they had a little flashlight going. They came out of the station when they saw us coming and when we told them these were two thieves who we think stole our water pump – although we did not have any proof yet – the police pulled them roughly out of the car and pushed them into the back room of the station where we heard them hitting and yelling and poking at them with their clubs. Then they came back and began to ask us what had happened. We told them about the water pump being stollen and how someone had seen them with it. A little while later the police brought P__ and his friend out of the jail and put him into the back of the truck again – they wanted us to take them to the main police station because there was no jail cell to keep them there. We had two puppies in the back of the truck and when all the confusion was happening one of them started throwing up in the back of the truck. We warned the police not to sit in the vomit, so they made P__ sit right in it!
Well they kept P__ and his friend for two days in jail because it was the weekend. On Monday we told the police that if P__ would confess to stealing the pump and if we could find the pump and get it back we would make a deal with P__ so he would not need to spend a year in prison. So later in the day the police called us and said that P__ confessed it all, told them where the pump was and wanted to do anything to get out of prison. Halleluia! Another miracle – we got the pump back!
So we made this deal with P__ and his friend – we will let them get out of jail if they will come and work for us for free for 1 month and every morning at 7am they need to sit for an hour doing bible study with Freddy – one of the other workers.
When we got back to base with the water pump all the workers were jumping for joy! Now they knew for sure that God was more powerful than a witch doctor! He could really answer their prayers and not only show them who stole the pump, but actually get the pump back for them! God is real and now they know how powerful he is!