Friday, June 27, 2014

Where Your Treasure Is.

blog june

These last two weeks have been really great.  We have had a team that were able to stay for two weeks instead of one.  I didn't know how this would work out, because we have never had a whole team stay longer than 10 days, but it has been a huge blessing!  The people who came, have been ministering in so many ways.  They have been doing the checkups on our cars, like changing the oil and fixing headlights and broken horns.  They have been changing tile on my countertops that have been broken, painting fences, repairing showers, wiring in the houses, doing crafts with the girls almost everyday, leading devotions at night, ministering to local schools and even building a new pen for our animals.  They have hauled lumber, eaten leftovers, and walked in a lot of mud, but they have not complained.  They just keep looking for something else they can do before they go back home.  

We have had so many teams come to help us with this mission and love on our girls.  We have had construction teams, and evangelistic teams, medical teams, and teams who have just come to bless the schools and communities in anyway they could.  They bring supplies for school, send rice supplements for the communities, clothes for the girls and all sorts of supplies through containers that are sent from the States.  We have had teams come and bring finances to build large buildings, hire the locals to give them an opportunity to work, and replenish our tool shed.  Teams have come just to encourage the girls and me.  

There is a new book out right now about short term missions.  I haven't read it, but apparently it is not a positive book on this subject.  I was told it was the author thought that the monies for short term missions, like plane tickets, transportation in country and living expenses while the teams are here would be better spent helping local communities, or just sending the monies to the missionary.  Through all these teams and iteneraries the main theme has not been about the money, it has been about relationships that will never fade away.  

If the author contends that we should just stay where we are and minister in that immediate area, Jesus would have never left Nazareth.  He would have made his finances in carpentry and sent money to the local Rabbi to help the widows and orphans.  The excitement that was felt when he served the masses loaves and fishes wouldn't' have happened.  His miracles wouldn't have happen if He hadn't made an effort to make a move in different areas.  He didn't call attention to what He did, if fact He told the recipients quite the opposite.  However the people who followed Him and learned from HIm, did the same thing.  They obeyed and went into all the world to preach the gospel cast out demons, healed the sick, and told them that "The Kingdom of God has come unto you."  They were told to preach everywhere, not in just there neighborhood.  Jesus left a mandate to preach the gospel in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and in the uttermost parts.  I heard a pastor say to "Preach the Word, and when necessary, use words".  Many short term missionaries are not pastors.  They are people with a heart to serve and to help and establish the missionary that is living on the field. 

The people who come here, are kind and loving and love with abandon whether it is using the supplies they brought for our mission or our community,  The team that is here now is doing that.  They have encouraged me and my girls and the Honduran workers who labor with me. It is exciting to see how much they have done to bless our mission.  

I wrote to a pastor the other day about how exciting it was that he and his team came down to bless our mission a few years back. They were totally prepared financially to accomplish what they set out to do.  It gave me great joy at the way they came and spent everything they had  in abandon for the One they came to serve.  It wasn't a prideful thing it was a loving thing the way they blessed us.   My girls and our community felt cared over. It wasn't the money, it was their heart.  The Bible says where your treasure is your heart will be also.  If we focus on the money, and not the heart behind it, we will not prosper, because people are not engaged.  To be engaged you have to have relationship. 

WE have teams who do not have a lot of finances. they sold chicken  dinners, auctioned cakes, sold personal things on eBay, and did whatever they could to arrive here on the mission field to do what God called them to do.  Because they worked so hard to get here, it blessed us in the extreme also. Either way God is glorified and the people get blessed.  

Bottom line, short term mission is my heart even though I am here full time.  My family wouldn't have gone into full time missions if we hadn't have gone on short-term mission trips.  Short-term missions help some of us to put feet on our Christian walk.  

I am called to the girls here, but also to the people who come on short-term missions.  God called all of us to go, some just stay longer than others.  WE are supposed to encourage each other daily and however that looks like to the ones who are hearing to go, we should encourage them do it. 

If we, as a family, had stayed in our comfort zone, in our hometown in the house we built with our own hands, we would have never been as blessed as we have been.  We would have made more money, we could have sent more money of course.  WE were making money when we were living in Doerun, Georgia, surrounded by our family and friends, but we would have missed an understanding about obedience to God and all the relationships and a life that He has allowed us to participate in these last 20 years.  He told us if we left family, and homes He has supplied for all of us and will continue to do so.

Verily I say unto you, there is no man who has left houses, brethen, or sister or father, or mother or wife or children, or lands for my sake an the gospel's But that he shall receive an hundredfold lands, brethren, sisters, mothers, children and lands, with persecutions, in this life and the one to come.  Matthew  10:29, 30... All the above has been fullfilled in my life here in this life.  

Blessing from the Short-term, Long-term Honduran MOM

Monday, June 2, 2014

Raining and Reigning

Greetings from down South, 

We have expectantly been waiting on "the rains".  Normally they cranked up in the middle of April.  They haven't this year.  Finally, the daily rains are common here again.  However, we have no electricity or wifi when it rains hard.  The up-side is that the farm looks great! Everything is green and gorgeous.  The dust has settled and the mud is here, but everything is blooming and growing in every way here at Project Talitha Cumi.  We have been planting seeds in every spot we can clear. (thanks to Tim and Ana, and Dean)  Next week I am receiving a lot of banana trees.  I am on a campaign of never having to buy bananas for my banana loving girls. 

The girls are growing so fast.  I made a decision a while back to put two girls in my house from the other girls houses each month.  I am doing this in an effort to "Not Miss a Thing".  They are growing up so fast.  We have some girls who are really shy, and I don't want to miss their growing up years.  We have the girls who are all out there and they always get attention in one way or another for their good or bad behavior.  However, the ones  who are quiet, are harder to read, and they seem like they have everything they need and are content, but most of the time that is not true.  So I am trying to bond with them a little more by having them in my house.  I started out having them here for a month, but I am going to be at this for 3 years at that rate, because we have so many girls now.  The girls will now stay for two weeks. 

  I have some girls who are permanently  here in my house and I don't see that changing anytime soon.  These are moms with little ones.  So I am trying to keep them here, and not worry about where their little shavers are.  The other ones that can talk, tell on each other so I am safe.  Right now I have our 5 year old and 7 year old here.  They have been really pouty lately and just need some extra attention and some extra hugs to grow in the right direction.  They are the babies in the other houses and here they will be the older sister to the little ones here.  Already I can see a difference.  It helps me too. They make me laugh.  Sometimes things get stressful around here with all the activity of girls and the drama that can happen over nothing.  We all need to laugh to grow right.  The joy of theLord is our strength. 

Last night the girls went with Miss Nicole, our new intern from TEXAS,  to the "vijilia" at the church.  It is an all night long church service.  The girls did their "One World" choreography, for the little round church, Brazos Abiertas (open arms)  in Yamarangula , where we attend. Our long time friend, Pastor Jesus from Santa Cruz was there with his church members.  HIs church played musical instrumentals and sang.   It had been raining hard and the roads and the small bus that sat low to the ground was not a good option, and I couldn't drive the big bus.  I decided that I couldn't  carry all the girls from the farm in the two trucks that could plow through the mud.  I stayed home with the little ones and let the girls that were older go to the church with Miss Nicole.  I knew that the little ones were used to going to bed at 8:00 and they would be asleep before the service got going good. ( and maybe I would have been asleep too right afterward they nodded off. ) I told Nicole that I would come help her drive them back if was raining, because we had about 9 girls in the back of the truck, when they left. They couldn't take the patrol because you can put more girls in the back of the truck than you can get in the patrol altogether   I am planning to sell or trade the patrol and get a diesel mini van.  The patrol was wonderful when we had 17 girls, and we needed a the 4x4 to take us through the worst roads in our area, but now we have 34 girls, and so we have to look for something that will seat more girls.  They are almost through paving our main road close to the farm.  That will help the longevity of our vehicles.   I had to go help pick them up in our HIlux 4-wheel drive because it was raining hard when it was time to leave. It felt weird driving at night.  I had not driven at night this whole year, that I could remember.  WE are usually in the house by dark.  But I had to go because the girls would have been drenched in the rain sitting in the back of the truck.  

When they got home,  around 10:00 p.m. , they were all talking and laughing all at the same time.  I was trying to follow their conversations.  One of our girls, had noticed a young man from another church, who were visiting our church.  He had worked for us off and on for a while.  She said "I just thought he had old ripped clothes, but he was all dressed up and singing church songs and playing a keyboard.  I didn't know he could play a musical instrument! ".  I asked them what kind of clothes do they wear to pick coffee and work on the farm.  And they responded, "Our worst", and then the lights went off about judgements.  They are growing up.  After that comment started another discourse on some of the other people they saw at church. Apparently, one of the town's problematic men decided to go to church.  He had been drinking and the girls were alarmed about him being in church.  The pastor told them not to worry, that they had locked the gate, so he had to behave.  The fact that they were locked in with this guy, who was acting bizarre did not fill them with peace.   I told them it was the best place he could be.  They said he started crying during the service and they knew that God was touching his heart.  They are very observant and they are growing up in so many ways.  

They prayed for some of the people there at church and they introduced themselves, which is huge.  It is another thing I am trying to do.  Usually at church they would beat me back to the bus. WE would practice about how to meet people at devotions.  Each Sunday I asked them if they met anybody new and the response was always the same, "No", I am shy.  So one Sunday, I told them that I was going to sit in the bus after church until they went back and met one person.  The other shocking thing they told me about their night away from MOM was that they told the congregation of a blended church with people that they didn't know that their dance was about Christian unity in the body of Christ.  They didn't practice that speech, but they did it.  I am super proud of these girls. 

WE are experiencing a lot of growth in our ministry.  We have double the amount of girls  that live here with us 24/7 in the past year.  WE have an extra 9 girls from our community attending our school that are here for just a day. If the girls stay on course we will have 5 girls ready to go to college, with the other one who is already studying at the university.   We have bakery, and now our Boys Home is built.   We have 4 cows, 2 calves, 13 goats, rabbits, 4 ponds of fish, corn, beans, vegetables of every sort, and house 5 is on the horizon this year, and an addition to the school we hope for next year. We have two doctors who are coming once a week.  One ministers to the girls on our farm, every two weeks  and the other just Doctor will ministers to the community starting next Saturday for a day every other Saturday.  Just this past week,  we have had a couple who I have known for a while.  They are moving to Yamaranguila and they want to help us by getting  other Hondurans to assist us in helping their Honduran Girls. 

  God is really moving here in Honduras.  I thank you for participating with us in this season of Such is the Kingdom Ministeries.  These children are part of the future of this country and for His Kingdom.  That is why we are here.  Thank you for helping us remain here.  

These last few days without communication allows one to reflect on all the people who have invested in these girls and some of the girls in our community. 

  Sometimes we have wonderful soaking rains of people who come and saturate the girls with their love and counsel.  Sometimes they stay for a short time, but sometimes they stay longer. WE have heavy rains that last for days, almost a monsoon season, but they wash away anything that is not important and leave the ground clean, fresh and green, everything is filled.   Then we have the rains that are storms, where crazy things happen, lightening, thunder, winds blow, trees fall, fear comes and sometimes people get hurt, but we still grow in forgiveness and strength in HIm.  For months things completely dry up.  This was the worst year of dry season, and our water table was so low, it would take the pump sometime to recuperate each day. We just banded together, got water from the rivers, and we held on to the hope that the blessing of rain was on the way.   Sometimes we have clouds and mists here on this mountain.  If you stay outside you will get wet, but you can barely feel the moisture on you, but it is there, saturating you without you knowing it.  Those are the people that call and send their love, or a birthday wish through Skype or Facetime, but the water sustains us, through dry times.  I am thankful for all the seasons of life giving rain to our girls.  They are thriving because of all of you who continue soak them in prayer.  Thanks for blessing Him, through blessing us!!!  

Thanks from the community girls.  You are helping provide for their uniforms and and shoes, and education.  Their names are: Sarah, Marcela, Noehmi, Diana, Nicole, Lucy, Andrea, Siniada, Sammi,

 (our girls) Sonia, Lizzy, Angela, Nancy, Gabby Roxana, Yency, Darlin, Miledy, Alexa, Alicia, Cinthia, Carmen, Paola, Jeimy, Carina, Stephani, Lucy, Eva, Maite, Jennifer, Kimberly, Anna, Elida, Nicole, Genisis, Belkis, Jelsey , Estrella, Mary, Noehmi, Karla, Kenia,  Rosey.

(teachers) Miss Dariela, Miss Bessy, Miss Alicia, Miss Daisy, Miss Waldina, Miss Angelina, (house moms) Miss Teresa, Miss Lucia, Miss Avi, Miss Manuela,

 (Watchman and workers) Mr. Pedro, Mr. Pedro B, Mr. Adrian, Mr. Elbin, Mr. Armando, Mr. Ever, (Bakery) Cruz, Miss Rosa, Miss Anastacia, Miss Lina, Dra. Paola, Dr. Javier. 

We may never know how many people are being blessed by your  prayers and generosity, but He does. These are only a few of the people that I see every day being blessed and blessing others.   Please continue to pray for us all.   WE have the very best staff in all the world.  Blessings from the Raining/Reigning  and Growing with Him Honduran MOM and Associates.