June 1, 2013

What a difference a few weeks make! Three weeks ago, I announced at the Brickyard that I would be leaving for a year and that Vanessa would be taking over the Friday classes. We told the ladies that we would need THEIR help, and suggested various ways they could help. The purpose of this is to get them to take baby steps in their Christian walk, to reach out and minister instead of just waiting to be ministered to. Here are some of the results:

During the last three Fridays, three different pairs of ladies have come together to clean the church building BEFORE we arrive for class! It’s nice to not have to do that job the moment we get to the Brickyard.

We took an offering on Friday to be used for purchasing the snack on Friday. This might seem pretty meager to you, but among the 12 ladies present, they gave a total of $4.00 USD. Hopefully as we become more consistent in taking up the offering, they will remember to bring money to class and also become faithful givers.

Anita and Linda are both very interested in helping Vanessa with the children’s classes and have begun assisting her in various ways.

While visiting a group of the ladies, one of them suggested that they make a going-away meal for me before I leave, to thank me for my years of service. Wow! I’m humbled they would even come up with that idea – it’s certainly nothing we’ve ever done before, so it’s special that they would come up with the idea all by themselves! I’ll let you know if it happens and how it all goes!

Guadalupe, an older lady who has studied medicine at the university, is talking about helping us set up a simplified medical clinic (since I won’t be there to help dispense medicines). With her medical training, she would dispense the medicine, give injections, etc.

Miguel and Patty, the couple who lead church service on Sundays, have recently had a heart-breaking loss (Patty’s second miscarriage). She is barely recovering and is struggling with depression. I suggested the ladies show them a tangible act of love by preparing a simple meal for them. Six ladies pitched in to make a meal, which we took to them today. The children also made get-well cards for Patty to cheer her up. Miguel and Patty were touched by this simple out-pouring of love.

Lupe offered to clean Patty’s house until she is well enough to do her own housework. She normally is looking for paying work, so for her to offer her services free of charge is truly a sacrifice! Plus, she came up to me today and gave a really big special “snowflake” Christmas ornament! Just as a gift!

THANK YOU for your prayers! They are effective in the hands of a mighty God! I know the ladies and children will grow even more in my absence, but I am grateful to the Lord for allowing me to see some of the “first fruits” before I go. This is YOUR harvest too! Keep praying for all of us down here!