However, they were right about one thing. As we were coasting down the mountain bordering the Great Rift Valley, we'd been going 115 km/hr (70 miles/hour). Unfortunately, we found out a little bit too late that the official speed limit in Kenya is 100 km/hour! I do not think this is common knowledge! So we were told to follow the policeman to the police station. Thankfully, the station was not very far away.
|Naivasha Police Station|
Seth and I sat in the car while BJ went in to pay the fine. I resigned myself to the fact that we could very well be there all day. I knew from experience that it is impossible to know what to expect from police in a foreign country. Seth and I prayed out loud for God to give Daddy wisdom and to please take care of the situation for us because we know that He is in control. My heart smiled to hear Seth's little voice chime in, "Because, God, You know everything."
By the way, I was very careful not to "put down" the police in any way to Seth. He needs to learn to respect and obey authority, and it wouldn't help him at all to hear Mommy and Daddy fuming about the police. Trying to stay as positive as I could, I simply told him that Daddy had not known how fast we were supposed to go. I was very thankful to be able to honestly tell my son that his daddy would not have gone over the speed limit had he known it.
After waiting in the car for about an hour, I got a text message from BJ saying, "I have to go to court. Pray that the case will be handled quickly." As time dragged on, I became more and more anxious wondering what was going on. Sometimes it is harder to be the one waiting and not knowing. I prayed for BJ to keep his cool.
Finally, BJ called me and told me his predicament. After court, he'd been taken to a holding cell until he could pay his fine of 2,000 shillings ($20). The problem was he was not allowed to leave, and the fine had to be paid at the bank in Naivasha. This meant someone had to go pay the fine for him, or BJ would get to stay in jail for a month. My fear rose as BJ began giving me directions how to get to the bank in Naivasha. I do not drive in Kenya, and neither BJ nor I know our way around Naivasha. In fact, he was actually getting the directions from one of the guards. Furthermore, I do not have a driver's license here although that is in the plans eventually. Upon remembering that fact, BJ told them it wouldn't work for me to go in his place. (He also knows I am horrible with directions and that I would very likely get myself lost in the little town of Naivasha!) It was an impossible situation.
Thankfully, BJ had kept his cool, and had in fact been chatting with the guards in Swahili up to this point. Now, when they heard about his predicament, one of them offered to take his money to the bank and pay his fine for him. It pays to keep a good testimony and to make lots of friends! I was never so relieved to look up and see BJ standing at the car window ready to drive us . . . home. No, we did not make it to Nakuru today to look at that house. After sitting for three hours at the police station, there was not enough time to continue on our way to Nakuru, look at the house, and then get back home in time for BJ's sign language class tonight. Oh well, there is always another day for that.
On a humorous note, the Kenyans have a philosophy that if you get one thing accomplished during the day, you've had a good day! After the fact, BJ grinned at me and said, "Well, I got my one thing accomplished for the day--getting out of jail!"
All was not in vain, however. While BJ was being detained, Seth and I were able to pass out probably 30 to 40 Gospel tracts as people walked by our car. A large group of school students, many of them Muslim, were there waiting for their driver who had also been stopped for some reason, probably unknowingly speeding as well! They each took a tract! God has promised that His Word will not return unto Him void. Maybe these students were God's reason we spent the day at the police station.
Thanks so much for your prayers. They are more valuable than you know!