Goodbye Ordinary

I will recount the steadfast love of the LORD, the praises of the LORD, according to all that the LORD has granted us. Isaiah 63:7

Cholera Situation in Haiti November 17, 2010

Filed under: Ministries,World Events — Lori @ 7:22 pm

 

I just had to share as I got a new post from a wonderful ministry in Haiti – Real Hope For Haiti – and what they are facing as cholera has reached their town.  It is very serious and they need donations and they need prayer.

Here is a portion of the recent post:

Things are getting more serious here in Cazale with the Cholera outbreak.  There were 2 children that died in the RC this AM.  We had 17 other children that were very sick with vomiting and diarrhea.  We were slightly overwhelmed.

I wanted to try to explain something to everyone.  We live about a 45 minute drive to the next bigger town.  This town has a center set up for Cholera patients.   Someone asked  “Why don’t you just send them there?”  Well people-we have had several come in that are near death. Over 10 people that we could not even get BP to register on.  One lady was not breathing and we somehow brought her back.  This is a serious illness that does not allow for a lot of time to get to a treatment facility.  So many people live back in the mountains and have to walk hours to get medical treatment.  Many are dying because of this.  They just do not have enough time to get help.

Please do take the time to check out the entire post and donate if you are able.  This family has been in Haiti for a very long time – about fifteen years.   They have an established ministry and the people there trust them and count on them.  This country has been through so much already!

 

A Lesson I am Still Learning January 26, 2010

Filed under: Faith,Life,Ministries — Lori @ 1:09 am

I was reading a new blog post at The Journey, Katie’s blog about her ministry in Uganda.  She has taken on so much in her short twenty years of life and she was made aware of a widow, very sick with AIDS, who needed someone to care for her and help with food and medicine.  She writes about her struggle to make the decision to ask the woman to come live with her.

This is Katie’s family – the fourteen children she is mother to.  I love this photo:

What I appreciated about her words was the fight that goes on in all of us.  Every day we are presented with choices.  Many times we talk ourselves out of doing something we think might be hard or inconvenience us. 

At the end of her post she came to the conclusion that what was really happening was that the Lord was working on her heart – the woman actually turned her down and did not want to move in.  But, in her wrestling with the decision she realized that God was asking her to be willing to obey even when it felt hard or inconvenient. 

She quoted from Matthew 25 where Jesus is talking about the judgment and separating the sheep from the goats – those who saw people in need and did something about it and those who either didn’t notice the needy or chose not to help.  Forgive my very succinct, condensed version! 

What hit me when I read it was that it isn’t our deeds that save us.  That is NEVER Jesus’ message.  We are saved by grace, through faith in the work of Christ – nothing in ourselves at all!  But, it is apparent by our works that we are saved or that we aren’t. 

I really want to be willing and open to obeying God in any task He would ask of me.  To do that I need to be ready.  How can I do that?  I need to be immersing myself in the Word of God daily.  That is the daily bread that is necessary in order to live the life God wants me to.  The more I understand Who God is and breathe His Word into every part of my life, the more my responses will be like Christ.  I need to die to myself – put aside what I think is so important and lay my life at the foot of the cross – a willing and humble servant.

The Christian life is a fight every day.  We are saved when God does the work of regeneration in our hearts and makes us into a new creation, but we are still plagued with the sin nature.  It is a battle and we have to take it seriously.  We must arm ourselves.  Again, the way we do that is with God’s Word. 

Hebrews 4:12  For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

 Please do follow the link and read her entire post.  Katie is an inspiration and God is using her mightily.  And, look around you for the needy – those who may just need a kind word or a smile.  Be Jesus to those you come in contact with!

 

Keep Praying (and giving) for Haiti January 16, 2010

Filed under: Faith,Ministries,World Events — Lori @ 2:13 pm

I don’t know about you, but I can hardly think of anything besides the people of Haiti and those who are there trying to do all they can to help them.

Yes, there are many aid workers on the way to Haiti, but there are people who already live there – people who have lived and helped the people of Haiti for years.  People who have given of their lives and love to meet the needs of these poverty stricken people and in those loving acts have also testified of the love of the Father.

I read about another missionary family who ministers in Haiti today.  I found the link on Noel Piper’s blog for a ministry called Real Hope For Haiti Rescue Center.  They began their work in 1999 with a six year old girl who was a burn victim.  From their website:

We began with our first child, a severely burned 6 year old, that would have had to walk 6 hours each way to get dressing changes. We took her into our care to do daily dressing changes. Two week later we took another burn, and after two more weeks we had four children that were living with us full time.

After that they started to take in malnourished children who would stay with them until they were doing better.  You can see that this ministry is perfectly positioned to offer medical care to the people in this hard hit area.

If you are interested in learning more about this ministry or donating to their work in Haiti, please visit their website.  You can donate online through a link on the right hand side of their blog . They have a lot of photos of the devastation.  Please continue your prayers for these people who are precious in God’s eyes.

 

Ooooo! Another Great Project December 9, 2009

Filed under: Faith,Ministries — Lori @ 1:55 pm

I just received an email from Biblical Training’s website alerting me to a fund raising project they are working on.  If you haven’t heard of Biblical Training, they are a website that provides quality Biblical training through audio of teaching sessions by well-known and respected professors for free. 

The email I recently received mentioned a project they are working on to raise money to build orphanages in India through South Asian Institute who runs a school in Coimbatore, India, which is a place for training pastors and to serve as a research center for other teachers.  They also plant churches all over India.

South Asian Insitutes’ goal is to build eight orphanages which will hold 32 children, four to a room, and an apartment for house parents.  Each house costs $60,000 to build and Biblical Training (dot) org has asked to raise money for one of these homes. 

orphans

A few of the first 22 orphans headed for the first orphanage built.

orphanage

The first of eight planned orphanages at the South Asian Institute.

Please consider giving to this worthy cause and helping one of these orphanage homes to be built.  Thank you for giving to the poor and helpless this Christmas season!

 

A Gift-Giving Idea December 8, 2009

Filed under: Ministries — Lori @ 12:40 am

Here in the United States, we don’t realize how fortunate – how amazingly blessed – we are.  Even in our worst circumstances, we come nowhere near what many people – let alone children – face in their everyday lives in other parts of our world.

We enjoy giving gifts to each other at Christmas time to let people know how much we love them, but really – is there very much that we REALLY need?

This year, you could give a gift that would show your love in more than one way. Consider giving a gift to a ministry that works to protect, feed, educate, and care for orphans or very poor children. You can give that gift in honor of a person you would normally buy a gift for, but often can’t figure out what to give them. Let that person know how you spent the money to help someone who is helpless. I think they will LOVE knowing that you thought of it.

Now, you need some ideas! I happen to have a few for you. 🙂 I have been following a very special ministry called Sarah’s Covenant Homes which has foster home type care for orphans (often abandoned) in India. Sarah gets kids from the government that nobody wants. She takes the kids that have neurological and other pretty serious health issues. These kids have lived their lives with no one showing them love let alone taking care of their basic needs.

Sarah's Covenant Homes button

Sarah just received 39 new children from the government – which brings her total to 83! Go to her blog and check out the photos and information. Not only are they in need of monetary gifts, but they are also in need of warm clothing for children aged 24 mo. to 6 years.  You can find information about this on the blog in the right hand column.  This ministry is completely run by donations – they take no support from the government.

I have told you about Amazima Ministries – a ministry in Uganda which operates to sponsor poor children to get an education.  It costs $300 a year to sponsor one child in school which also pays for them to have two hot meals every day and for their school supplies and appropriate clothing.  Amazima also makes sure that these kids get medical care when needed.  These kids live in extreme poverty and their parents cannot afford nutritious food, let alone provide them with an education which could break the cycle of poverty.

This ministry is run by a girl who is 20 years old!  You can read a back story of how she got started and a rundown of what she has been up to in Uganda since she moved there just over two years ago.  You will be amazed!

I think my favorite quote I have read recently was a statement made by Katie on her blog.  She said:

“It is easy to look to God and ask, “Why is there so much poverty in the world? Why is there so much hurt, so much inequality and unfairness, so much destitution?” I bet He would ask us the same thing.” 

You can read about Amazima at their website, click on “projects” to see what specific things you can donate for.

On their website, you can buy a family a chicken, donate for some land to plant a community garden, or various other specific things.  You can also just donate generically for their expenses.  A generic donation can be made by Paypal at the Amazima site – click on “how to help” to find that link.

What is it that we are celebrating on Christmas?  God sent Jesus into the world to give us the greatest gift ever given.  We give to others in remembrance of that gift.  May I remind you of Jesus’ words when speaking of the final judgment in Matthew 25:

34Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

 

An Easy Way to Get Involved October 6, 2009

Filed under: Adoption,Faith,Kids,Ministries — Lori @ 11:37 pm

As a follow up to what I posted about the blog, The Journey, there is a website where you can learn more about the organization called Amazina (connected with the blog) located in Uganda who are physically providing food, medical care, and hope through the gospel. 

From their website:

Today, Amazima Ministries shares Christ’s love with over 400
children, providing them with school fees, supplies, healthy
meals, medical needs, and spiritual encouragement. We
provide a home and a family for children who have never had
the luxury of either. We provide encouragement physically,
emotionally, and spiritually to those who need it most. We
provide these children with truth. The truth of a bigger world
through education, but more importantly the truth of a God
who created them beautifully in His image, a God who loves
them and values them and wants the best for them. These
children have never known that kind of love.

You can donate for their general expenses or even sponsor a child for $300 a year which will pay for them to be able to attend school.  For $10 you can buy a family a chicken.  There are many other ways to get involved as well.

It is estimated that there are 147 million orphans in the world.  It seems like too huge of a problem for us to do anything about it, doesn’t it?  Sometimes it seems that way.  But, we can do something. 

Not all of us are called to adopt, but God’s Word commands us to care for widows and orphans. (James 1:27)

We are called to care for those who are helpless, the fatherless, the aged.  We can and we must help in whatever way we can.  Once we are aware of these needs, we must not turn away without responding.  Some, like Katie of Amazima, go to meet needs in person.  Others support that work with prayer and with their finances.  However we decide to be involved, we can all be part of – no we are actually commanded to be part of – the work to relieve some of the suffering in this world.  And as Jesus said,

Matthew 25:34-40  Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,  I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

Please go visit Amazima’s website and read about their work and see how you can get involved.

 

Loving in Jesus’ Name

Filed under: Faith,Ministries — Lori @ 11:22 am

I recently found this blog, The Journey, written by a woman who ministers to the people in a small corner of Uganda by giving food, medical supplies, caring, and love.  It is amazing to read her stories.  Amazing and convicting.

Today, I read her post from Monday, October 5, entitled “Full”.  I cried as I read it.  Please do go read the whole thing!  Go read it and then come back and finish this post!

My first thought was how simple the act was that she performed for this boy, but how much it meant to him.  My second thought was how little gratitude I have for the provision of God that I see – abundantly! – every day of my life.  I don’t know what it feels like to be hungry for days.  I don’t know the fear of being injured and not knowing if there will be someone to care for it. 

Do yourself a favor and read on her site for as long as you have time.  I guarantee you that it will touch your heart, challenge your thinking, and urge you to action.

Matthew 11:28-30   “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Jesus speaking)

What does that mean – “my burden is light”?  Does it mean that Jesus will never ask us to do anything that is hard?

When we willingly take the yoke – us on one side, Jesus on the other – we are telling the Lord that we are making the choice to be obedient to His will.  We are surrendering our own wants and desires and giving ourselves wholeheartedly to His purposes.  And in that action, we are joining ourselves to Jesus to do whatever it is that He wants of us.  We will never go it alone if we are in His will.

I have to think about how often I feel like my burden is heavy.  Why does it feel that way?  Probably because I am going my own way, dragging a yoke on my own that is meant for two. 

When I prayerfully and in God’s grace choose to submit my will to His the Lord might ask me to do something that seems hard.  But it won’t be.  Not if I am resting in my yoke and leaning on the strength and wisdom of the God of the universe. 

That is how I want to live my life. 

 

 
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