31 August 2012

Guatemala Mission 2012

 In the past few months of 2012,  we have  had three ministry project trips  to Guatemala. One of the things  I love to do is to go into the villages and  help a little bit.  We might distribute some food or clothing, medicine or Bibles.  We might do some teaching.  But the thing that helps long term and really turns a child's life around is sponsorship.     After they have been sponsored for a  few months, we find children  carrying books and doing homework instead of playing in the mud. They wear simple clothing, but it is no longer torn and filthy.  It makes a difference in their lives.

 In 2012, we had groups doing projects like replacing a roof on a elder home.  We went into villages and gathered children for Bible stories, crafts and games. We held a medical clinic. We worked in feeding centers. We did some construction, some painting, some lifting and carrying.   And we shared God's  Word along the way.  They were little seeds dropped    and nurtured as we were able and then left for what the Lord would do with them.

For 2013, we will be forming groups  to go to  Guatemala in  March and in  June.  Contact us to join the team.

30 August 2012

Action Love Children's Home

The fastest birth of a new children's  home in this ministry was the  Action  Love  Children's  Home in  Nepal.   It is a beautiful example of a work that the Lord wanted to do and people willing to follow.  In February, 2012, we had our  building team of 11 men in  Nepal to work on a village church for the Maranatha ministry in  the rural southern part of Nepal. As  the trip ended, we  returned to the capital city and walked through the slum area where one of our Nepali partners has a ministry.  The poverty and the need were enough to move any heart.  Some fruit of the pastor's work was a small simple church building where-- among other activities-- he held a  weekly  Bible club for the children.  As best he could know, some of these children had come to saving faith and were  hungry for more of the Word.  Meanwhile,  the pastor watched as these new little brothers in  Christ spent their days begging in the street and foraging for food among the garbage.  Some of the adults in their lives were abusive and/or alcoholics  and some of them, including one of the age of seven,  had no adults in his life at all. The  Nepali pastor longed to do something to help them, but his personal support was barely enough  to meet the needs of his own family.  As we met that day,  he made a proposal to me, in the presence of the building team men, for  funding to start a children's home for some of the boys.  I actually get requests like this  quite often and while I try to listen carefully to each request, most of them seem to be an attempt to create a job for the one asking, rather than a heart to help the children. There was no hint of an improper motive in this opportunity.  It had all the right pieces in place and  I think each of us, who were present that day, sensed it.  Within the week,  I had photos and  bio/histories needed to  process ten boys into our  program.  Once we all returned to the US,  many of the men on the team sponsored  the boys and encouraged others they knew to do so.  Our  (American) pastor made the home a special  project for the church.  The funding was in hand. The  Nepali pastor  found  two flats  available in an apartment building.  he moved his own family into one of them and the boys into the other.  We provided the start up to buy basic furniture,  kitchen  equipment, clothes, medical exams and school enrollment.   Sixteen boys-- all under the age of 11-- wanted to come, but the pastor had to choose ten from  among them. The faces of the others still pop up in my mind-- but I have been doing this long enough to know that we cannot help them all.  Just like your own children that the Lord put into your home, we have to  do what we can for the ones who come under our care-- for those who are within our reach.     By    April, the ten boys were living in the home, eating two meals a day, enrolled in school,  and hearing more from  God's Word every  day.

Rohan needs a Sponsor

   It always makes me sad  when there is only one child left to be sponsored in a children's home. It is not the child's fault in any way. When we have had photos laying out on a table, his just was not the one chosen.  When we had a sponsor request come into the office, we picked a different one.  Now, when we print out the list for this particular home, there are sponsor names beside every child name, except his.  Certainly,  he is getting food, clothing medical care and school just as the others receive. What he does not have is someone praying specifically for him  and someone interested in only him.  He will not be the only one who does not receive a letter.  There are many sponsors who do not write. But   I still feel some pressure to assign him.  The very next sponsor, who is willing to help a little boy in  Nepal and who does not choose a  different child from the website or from our table--will get this boy.     MCH-46   Rohan