JR: We would like to be able to build a school where we’re sending out these meals. I think that it’s something that seems to be really doable. Even at the time, my friend Amber was the one who had originally talked about with me. And when she was talking, she’s just like, “You know, I think it would be great if we could go and build a school.” But it was just kind of throwing the idea out.
But as soon as she said it, it was like, “Sure, why not? Sounds great.” It’s not like, “Well, that’s nice. Maybe one day.” It was like, “We can do this. We could really make this happen.”
We were talking about we went to Africa together the first time, so both of us just love it. And so we were like, “Hey, this is a great idea. We should go out. We would love to go out there and help kind of get the ball rolling and then see it once it’s done.”
It could really impact a lot of people. For us, it’s a school, but for them, you know, they get an education, they get food, they get to live for years longer because they get nutrition that could drastically change them.
LR: The poverty level, by government, is the poorest country in the world, hottest country in the world. And you chose to live there. Go figure!
NC: Well, the harvest is great, and we’ve got to go where the harvest is.
LR: You know, Christians on the mission field don’t think like other people. They think in terms of the opportunity as the coolest thing in the world, that God gives you the privilege of doing this.
DC: It’s an honor for us to have been a part of something like that. And what Haley was saying, she’s not alone. When people come to Niger, the bug gets them, whatever you want to call it. I don’t know of any visitor that we’ve had—and we’ve had quite a few over the years—and the people say, “I would pay double for this experience.”
And those people by and large are all part of supporting us, part of our partner base, because it’s in them. They’ve been there, and part of their heart is for that nation. And I believe that now is the time for Niger. The windows of heaven are open over Niger.
When we first started raising our support back in 1997, we would talk to pastors and churches. And we’d say, “We’re going to Niger.”
“Oh, Nigeria?” “No, no, Niger, because at that time people didn’t even know Niger existed.
NC: The news media calls it “the forgotten tragedy,” because it’s just there.
HH: What was I thinking? I’ve said before, for me it was just, “I want to go and I want to be mentored under President Roberts on how this all works, the huge healing rally. I’ve never been a part of that. But for me personally going to Niger, something was just birthed in my heart I think while I was there.
And when I got off the plane even, I don’t know, the airport was small and most of it is like outdoors, it’s really rustic, I like it. And I just felt at home when I was there.
I’m thinking, I shouldn’t feel this at home here because I’m on the other side of the planet. But when I got off the plane, I was like, “This is very strange. I feel like I’m coming home or something.”
And for me now, I could definitely see myself personally just being called there and going and going to help these people. Because it’s not just about going to a country; it’s about helping people. I mean, these people are in desperate need of Christ.
And the people really were just sweet and very easygoing. Even when we’d come up and they were crippled five minutes ago and now on the stage, they’re just smiling and they walk up. And they’re walking. These people, it’s amazing who they are.
And I just began to fall in love with the people there. Something about that, it’s not just going to a country. It’s going to these people that need Christ.
And you know what? They saw a live demonstration of signs and wonders in front of them, and it opened something in them. And of course Neal and Danette are there all the time sharing with them. But for us to come together and do this huge rally, it blew my socks off.
LR: When Haley saw the miracles, Jordan laughed at how hard Haley cried and said, “Mom, you’ve got to see Haley. She’s so cute.”
And I’m like, “What’s Haley doing?”
And she said, “You ought to see the pictures.” And they sent me pictures back. And Haley is not crying. Haley is convulsing. She’s crying so hard when people got healed.
And I said, “Oh, no, the bug got her!” The I’ve-got-to-stay-in-Africa bug bit you. And now Jordan called back and said, “Mom, we can’t get Haley home.” So we have a funny feeling you guys are going to get her pretty soon.
When you went over there, that was your first crusade in an environment like that. You’ve been to Africa before, been on many crusades with your daddy, not only in this country but around the world. But this was different. And you saw an opportunity to impact not just the area where you were in, but to impact an entire nation, as well as impact the people in that nation that were so desperate that even one meal changed people’s lives.
And, you know, that makes you feel like the job you’re doing has great value. When it’s like, “Did they hear it? Did they get the message? Do they need it?” No. They needed it. They needed the food. They needed the medicine. They needed the message, and were, like you said, so grateful and precious for every meal that they had.
LR: Welcome to Make Your Day Count. My name is Lindsay Roberts. And here in Tulsa, Oklahoma we’ve had some very unique things happen on our campus. One of them is our chapel service that was Danette and Neal Childs. Now Neal and Danette are former ORU students, but they didn’t stay students here. They went on to open an amazing work in Niger in Africa.
Niger is a country that Richard just came from when he had that tremendous crusade that we’ve told so many people about, how the miracles, the miracles were so awesome in Niger.
Well, we’re going to talk to them about the need that they still face with the country, with the school that they’re opening, and with the feeding program. So we want to talk to them, and I believe they will tremendously bless you. So stay tuned.
Okay, we’re joined with Neal and Danette Childs over on this side, and we’re joined with Haley and Jordan over on this side. And today we want to talk about what happened when you all went to Africa. We’ve said this so many times before about everybody feeling the ministry in Africa over in Niger.
When the Lord placed it on my husband Richard Roberts’ heart, it seemed like it became a family affair. It seemed like everybody caught on, kids from the university, medical school, the dental, I mean, just people everywhere were calling.
In fact, we had doctors calling us and like, “Is it full, is it full, can we go, can we go?” Getting in the last minute, so excited, “Come on, let us go.” And it’s like, “Okay, where do we say no?”
Even with Haley, we were full, everything spent, tickets bought. And she whined and griped. No, she was so sweet. She badgered Richard enough till he wore down and Haley got to go, didn’t you?
HH: Yes, I did.
And it was wonderful. What we want to talk today is, you still have great need. And I want to start with, what in the world, here are these precious kids, and here are the kids from ORU. They’re singing. They’re getting educated. They’re in America. And you hear about going to Africa. Of course she’d already been.
But what makes you say—you don’t just drop everything and run to Africa, knowing Richard had already forewarned everybody it was not a Christian country, less than one percent Christians. They’d never had a crusade like this ever in the history of the country. And it was the hottest, poorest country by government standards in the world. What were you thinking?