Monday, February 14, 2011


Today's REALITY....Praise God for the chance to help people recover from Katrina...and thanks for helping us make a difference in peoples lives, like on.
It's been cold here in La, much like the rest of the country since the new year began. Certainly not below zero, but below freezing most evenings. Knowing how cold it's been here, made today's visits with home owners all the more real.
Especially our stop at Miss Gwen's. Her home had water up to the cielings over 5 years ago. and she's had a rough road to recovery. This past summer she had finally saved enough to have her electrical work done, only to have thieves break in and steal all the copper this fall. She's been ripped of by several contractor's, including her plumber, also this fall. So now five years later, she's living in a house that looks like this...
A bare slab, no walls, no insulation, no plumbing, no electricity (save an orange cord run in from outside), and especially no heat. She is up at 4am every morning, with an inside temperature barely above freezing, taking a cold sponge bath, before she walks a good ways to work at 5am. Cooking consists of a microwave. A small electric heater is a joke. She showed us her coffee pot with gratefulness.
She has to live in her house in its current state because she doesn't have a choice. She has family who'd welcome her, but she cannot leave her house unattended as she's afriad of thieves breaking in to steal the few things she has saved in the house. Even today, when it was sunny and 60's outside, she was shivering in the cool 50ish degree dampness inside the house.
And after we prayed for her today, she was the one encouraging us, reminding us of God's faithfulness and
Here's reality for us...Tonite at dinner, our family praised God for the blessing of our family, and a home with insulated walls, a roof that doesn't leak, electricity, heat, blankets....but more so for 'Amazing Love, oh what sacrifice, the Son of God has given for me, my debt he paid, and my death He dies, that I might live.' It's why we're committed here for the long term.
What's reality look like for you today....? Be sure to Praise God for His Faithfulness, Mery and Love today... and please Pray for Gwen, and thousands like her here in New Orleans. Would you consider coming and helping to make a difference too?
Serving the King with Grateful Joy.... ml

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Chincha Smiles

Though cultures differ greatly, one thing that I consistently notice as I travel is the joy expressed in a child's smile, even amidst difficult circumstances. The earthquake hit Brianna and Stephanie's home town of Chincha, Peru, 3-1/2 years ago. The marks of the quake are very evident in the piles of rock and broken buildings of their poor neighborhood. The girls play amidst the dirt and debris, with a joy and innocence.

I'm grateful the Lord led us to their neighborhood over 3 years ago. I am greatful that HE called the Zavala's, a Peruvian family from Lima to move here, and that HE supplied staff through TouchGlobal Crisis Response to serve along side them. I'm grateful that year's after others have pulled out, we are still there serving. We are there advancing a vision of seeing the Transforming Gospel impact Brianna, Stephanie and their neighbors in such a way, that not only would they be welcomed into heaven, but that their life here on eart would be different.

Our team has experienced the frustrations of pioneering work. Investing into potential leaders only to see them fall away. Yet God is working the hard soil. We have established a presence in the form of a small house serving as a 'church'. It's appropriately named "The Seed". A few new believers faithfully attend several studies through week and a 'service' Sunday evening.

We continue to also make a tangible difference in the lives of people in the community. A team from WI was left just as we arrived, after having conducted a medical clinic, seeing over 900 people in the community. We're almost done with a community center, where another small chruch will meet, and where the community will be able to offer a 'day care' to allow mom's the ability to safley leave their young children as they seek to eak out a living.

And we've also completed several more homes like this one for a single mom with several kids plus her teenage daughter who just had a baby.

Pray for Chincha. In fact, consider organizing a team to come here to pray for God to break the stongholds of darkness here and bring HIS will to this place. Consider organizing a team to come and engage in a ministry of compassion. Can you play with kids, cut or wash hair, speak English and have a willingness to share what you know with others, or bring whatever gift and talent you have to invest in kingdom relationships.
Perhaps the Lord would ask you to give to make Brianna's and Stephanie's neighborhood, just a little better. Thanks for your part in allowing us to serve in the mission field that follow crisis.