Two Fine People

Sarfraz William and Diane Scott

Two Fine People

David’s 6th and Final Photo Blog from Pakistan

I am now back home safe and sound, but not without a little suffering along the way—that included a weather-related missed flight connection in Dubai that added another 26 hours to our 24-hour travel itinerary. That suffering also included a cramped economy-class seat for 15 & 1/2 hours…the time it takes to fly from from Dubai to Newark. I knew we were in trouble when I boarded that plane and a flight attendant greeted me with a devilish smile and slowly said, “Hell! Oh!” (At least, that is what it sounded like.)

In this final blog, I want to tell you about two of our team members on this trip, two people of whom the world is not worthy.

The first is Sarfraz William, my friend and a strategic partner of Heaven’s Family. Sarfraz labored for years to launch Pakistan’s first Christian television station, and he succeeded in 2011 with the legal help of Pakistan’s first Christian Federal Minister for Minorities Affairs, Shahbaz Bhatti, who was assassinated in a spray of bullets by the Pakistan Taliban not long after.

Sarfraz’s television station was at first a cable station that reached all of Karachi, a city of 20 million people. In 2013, the Taliban bombed the station to smithereens. Two years later, Sarfraz was back on the air, and the Lord opened the door for his station to broadcast on the SAT-7 satellite. His Urdu-language station now covers all of South Asia, the Middle East, and much of North Africa. Most of their response, however, comes from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and the Gulf States such as Saudi Arabia and Oman. Sarfraz and his staff operate the station on a shoestring budget, and he has opened the door for many gifted Pakistani pastors and leaders to reach a broader audience.

Sarfraz is no doubt one of Pakistan’s most well-known Christian leaders, and I am amazed that he took ten days of his valuable time to be our guide to some very remote villages. I think his humility is most obvious in his church-planting ministry among the Marwari people of Sindh Province, who are some of the poorest people in Pakistan. Sarfarz knew he could never reach them through television. So he’s reaching them the old-fashioned way.

Because of recurring death threats, Sarfraz had to continually relocate his wife and daughters inside Pakistan. But when an angry mob forced all of them to flee from their home in the night by jumping out of a two-story back window, and when Sarfraz received threats that his daughters would be kidnapped and sold as slaves, he felt that he had no choice but to relocate his family to the U.S. That was just two years ago. Heaven’s Family has been blessed to help him during that transition. We are looking forward to having Safraz’s entire family spend some time this coming summer at the Peace Barn (our home).


Another team member is a long-term friend. Diane Scott was born again in 1998 by listening to a Bible teacher on the radio named David Servant. She took her first overseas mission trip the same year on a team I led, as a pastor, to Haiti. Part of our outreach in Haiti consisted of showing The Jesus Film in remote Haitian villages where people had never seen moving pictures. I can still remember Diane enthusiastically sharing her testimony to an outdoor crowd during the times we had to change reels on the projector.

Diane joined Heaven’s Family’s staff in 2012, and she has worn several hats. As director of Heaven’s Family’s Safe Water Ministry, Diane has successfully overseen almost 300 well-drilling projects all over the developing world that are now serving tens of thousands of the “least of these” among our spiritual family.

Diane has earned her designation as one of Heaven’s Family’s “Super Sisters,” a group comprised of female ministry directors whose ministries have attained an extraordinary level of fruitfulness. (That group also includes Patty Forney, Dossie Briggs, my wife, Becky, and soon, Rachel Reed.) Watching Diane in action during this trip to Pakistan has been a joy. She’s very competent at her ministry.

Diane is also very much a member of Becky and my family. Besides our daughters and daughter-in-law, Diane is probably Becky’s closest female friend. We always invite her to our annual family vacation on Lake Erie, and our 13 grandchildren love her for all the attention she gives them. She is a gem.

I’ve added a few random photos below, with captions, that I hope you will enjoy from our time in Pakistan. Click on the first one to enlarge it and scroll through the rest. Thanks for joining me on this journey! And thanks to everyone who has helped Heaven’s Family serve in Pakistan over the past 20 years!

IMG_2910.jpegTrucks in Pakistan can be pretty fancy! During our road trips, we saw hundreds of hand-painted beauties like these. To all my U.S. trucker friends: What are you waiting for?

FDB9A870-72B5-4B1F-AAAF-B8B567B14395_1_201_a.jpegThe Marwari Christians whom we visited in a number of villages raise goats and cows, but even those animals are owned by the landowners for whom they labor. They are too poor to afford their own animals. We are working on a micro-credit project that will enable them to own and breed their own animals, which will be their first step towards gaining some self-sufficiency.

IMG_8432-2.jpegA typical church service in Pakistan. Everyone sits on the floor, and opposite genders sit on opposite sides.

IMG_2687.jpegI love this portrait taken by Diane Scott. If you look at it long enough, you can note hundreds of mysterious things that no one can explain (as is the case with every moment of our lives). For example, how do children grow into adulthood? How does everyone have two sets of teeth, and what causes adult teeth to replace baby teeth? Why is smiling a universal expression of happiness? How is it possible for us to see this photo? God is revealing Himself in millions of miraculous ways to us every second of every day, trying to get everyone’s attention. Spiritual blindness is willful!

IMG_9327.jpegI took this photo in a HUGE restaurant in Karachi. I’m sure you can read “I love Allah” on the left. The Arabic writing on the right says (from right to left) “There is no God but Allah, and Mohammed is His prophet.” These kinds of religious signs are everywhere in Pakistan. They are not ashamed of their religion.

Screenshot 2024-01-23 at 3.15.38 PM.pngOur flight delay and missed connection resulted in a day of waiting in Dubai, so we took a two-hour guided tour of that ultra-modern city on the Persian Gulf. Dubai has the second-most five-star hotels of any city in the world. For $100, you can ride an elevator to the observation deck of the world’s tallest building (2,717 feet). We did not. I felt very rich in Pakistan and very poor in Dubai. (I did not take this photo.)
IMG_9449.jpegThe Final Shot: My oldest daughter, Charity, took this portrait in Pakistan when we were there in 2006. It became somewhat of an iconic photo at Heaven’s Family because of the boy’s mesmerizing eyes. Yesterday I asked Charity, “I wonder what he looks like today?” She replied, “He probably has a beard!”


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