lunes, 29 de junio de 2009
This is Donahi. She told me she wants to study in prepa but she doesn't have the money to do so. So we are praying to see how God will provide. I gave her homework to see how much it would cost her to be enrolled. I'll let you know what we found out. Will you join us in prayer?
Tonight we had a reunion of sorts. All of our casa hogars came to our property to celebrate how God has taken care of them. A group that is here sponsored a steak meal and we had a youth rally of sorts. Over 500 children, their workers and caregivers, directors not to mention about 85 group members and 100 of the back2back people that live here. So roughly 700+ people ate, worshipped, listened to one another give glory to God for what He has done. One girl about 16 years old stood up and said that she had left her casa hogar about three years ago. She spoke of being on the street, seeing girls her age who were pregnant and with babies, she spoke of girls who were forced to grow up faster than they should have. She gave glory to God that God brought her back to himself and under the shelter of the children's home. Another girl spoke of how difficult of a child she was growing up. She gave thanks to the workers at the children's homes for not giving up on her. She gave God praise for not giving up on her and for changing her. She now has entered college and is following him. The other kids were intently listening to what they had to say. I couldn't help but think one girl or boy who maybe had a hard day or was thinking that nothing could change for them was listening and heard a word of hope. That one worker heard hope for that child with whom he or she is having trouble. I'm sure it wasn't easy for either of those girls to share. But God gave them strength. They obeyed and God was glorified. What has God done for you lately? Who has He called you to share with?
My niece was here last week. She was training for soccer conditioning this summer. Trying to be a good aunt, I ran with her while she was here. A few of the nannies saw that I was running and asked to come along. When I said yes, the were so excited. They exclaimed it will be like last year. They continued to tell me how Corrie Guckenberger had taken them last year to the running park in the mornings and prayed on the way home, listening to their favorite worship song. As I listened I realized the impact that one hour had on them. What was cool, is I too had this experience with Corrie as she continued the run/prayer practice with me. As I thought about this for a while, I was impressed that something so simple, taking someone along on a run and praying at the end had such a huge impact. I think God wants us to do this more often. I wonder what opportunities He might give me if I listened and was more aware. Thanks Corrie for being obedient to God. Your impact still felt.
domingo, 28 de junio de 2009
Lord, I pray to have your eyes and see what gets fogged through my eyes. Help me to see everyone for someone who needs you. Not the woman that talks to much or the boy that is always angry. But the woman who needs you and covers her insecurity as she talks too much or the boy who hurts others because he himself is hurt. Lord give me your eyes.
Yesterday I went to the Rio. I was on a mission to help some kids pay their costs that they need for graduation on Tuesday. Two were graduating from sixth grade and one from secondaria which is 9th grade. The day went longer than planned but I was most moved when we went to the secondaria school (like our jr. high). When we got out of the car, I asked if it was open as there were classrooms but no one was there. The two women I was with assured me that there was one room open on the other end. But I never saw a student. I knew of atleast two boys who were suppose to be going to this school. One with learning disabilities and couldn't read. As I asked about him they assured me that he came but they had no way to help him as they didn't have a special teacher for him. We then asked about graduation and we were told that there wasn't any cost because the students didn't want to have a ceremony. They couldn't afford uniforms or just didn't have an interest. As I stood there I wondered what kind of education one gets in a school with so few students. I wondered what the effort was from teachers and students alike. I wondered if education was valued. They didn't see it worth celebrating. My heart is heavy for this community that lacks dreams and ambition. Here are a few photos from the Rio. I often just see the people that I miss the surrounding they live in day in and day out. Will you pray with me that they will accept Jesus in their lives and have dreams of what He has created them to be.
domingo, 21 de junio de 2009
Here's a few boys from the children's home Greg works with called Manantial de Amor. I really enjoy seeing Greg with them. He plays with them and they seek him out. Recently Greg worked with a group at their home. He and the group left the home at 5:30 after they poured concrete all day. Greg left a mason to finish his work. That night Greg got a call from the home saying the mason went home without finishing the job. Greg and a staff son, Jonathon, who is in college, went to the home to finish it at 9:00. They worked hard and as they did one boy came by to Greg and gave him a back massage. He hung out most of the night showing his appreciation of them working so hard for their home. Greg was moved by that. Angel is the one nearest Greg in the picture. The day of the medical brigade Angel and Greg had a fun water fight. It's so fun to see the relationship Greg has with these boys. I am grateful that God uses him in this way.
We hosted our first Mexican Doctor and Dentist Brigade on our property Sat. I would guess 25-30 health professionals came to help out from the Christian Medical Society. They are health professionals that volunteer their time to serve the poor in Monterrey. Saturday they gave their services to our children. In only 4-5 hours they saw 107 children, workers and adults. They helped one girl with a consult for a possible tumor. One boy cut his chin while playing and waiting to see the doctor. He required 4 stitches. Many cavities were filled, teeth pulled and so much more. Prayer given as well. I was struck with how different and more comfortable the kids were without the need of translation. I am so thankful for all the doctors would come here and serve. Praise God for these volunteers and all they do for the people of Monterrey. It was a privilege to be around them.
miércoles, 17 de junio de 2009
Here's my friend Patty holding Katlyn Abril. It's the name of Meme's granddaugher. Almost 2 months later she is given a name. One that maybe few Mexicans can pronounce but a special friend of Meme's and now her granddaughter is her name sake.
There has been a faithful donor who on a very regular basis has sent money for this adorable girl at the Rio. Her name is Sarahi. She is 8 and is finishing 2nd grade. With the money that is sent in, it has paid for school, stables for her family when they were without food, and other necessities for Sarah and her family. Recently I told Meme that I needed to talk to her mother, to see what they needed as I had some money sent in for her. Meme informed me that Sarahi's mother had kicked her out of the house and that her grandmother took her in. Sarahi has a younger sister and her mom currently is pregnant with twins. Her younger sister was allowed to stay. I have had many people, Meme, Sarahi and her grandmother try and explain this to me and I can't understand how this can happen. The hurt is seen on Sarahi when she asked another woman and myself to pray for her. As I prayed I told her that this was not a surprise to God and that He had already had placed someone in the states to care for her. That was just one way God was showing her that He loves her. I don't know what a girl that age can understand but her countenance changed. I shared our theme verse of Psalm 91:1-2
"He that dwells in the shelter of the Most High, will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress. My God, in whom, I trust."
As Sarahi learns to trust the Lord, He is showing her how He can shelter her through her grandmother, through the US donor and others who are praying for her. Amen.
jueves, 11 de junio de 2009
you get pulled over by a transito (a traffic police officer) only to have your director call to see if you are okay as you pull away. Here's the story..... the other day I was driving home from a birthday party at Milagros' school for the deaf. I was driving in an area that had a speed limit of 60 KPH and I was going 65. The transito had a speed monitor and was going to give me a ticket. I'm not sure exactly what that transfers to miles per hour but something like 2+ over the speed limit. I expected to get a ticket but he wanted to take my driver's license. That I didn't want and wasn't sure if he could do that or not, so I called my lawyer. After just telling Paula who I was, that I was pulled over by a transito and that I had a question for her, the line cut out. I quickly tried to call back but it was busy. I then found her cell number and reached her and she helped me by talking to the transito. I heard a lot of the conversation however not all and in the end she somehow got me out of the ticket. As I drove off, Todd called me.
"Cathy, How are you?" he asked.
"Uhhh, Ok I guess." I responded. "Why?"
"I got a call from Gabo in el Limon, he said Perla's office called and you were pulled over by a transito. Is there anything you need help with?
I had to chuckle, Gabo was at a children's home about 4-5 hours from Monterrey. Apparently when our call got cut off, she didn't have my number so she called Gabo, Gabo called Todd and told him that I had been pulled over and needed help.
Once I got over the embarrassment of others knowing that I was pulled over, I realized how blessed I am that I have such a network and that others care enough to check up on me. I know that God has allowed this to be true in the body of Christ. We are called to look outside of ourselves and to care for one another. Part of the shelter that God provides for us is through those around us. I was faced with my own actions. Am I aware of the call God has on my life to ask others how they are doing? Am I looking out for others as Christ would have me to do?
I'm not always happy to share my embarrassing moments with my community around me however I am grateful for the care and love that our community provides for one another.
martes, 9 de junio de 2009
This is my friend Milagros. She turned 17 today. I have known her for 2 years now. When I met her, she rarely left her community except to go visit family. She wanted to be a hairdresser and work out of her home. She was social but had few friends. God is expanding her life. Because of the support of a church in Cincinnati, she has had the opportunity to go to school and learn sign language. She is being introduced to computers, and a life outside of her community. She still might want to be a hairdresser but now she thinks of teaching children who are also deaf. She is begging her mom to let her travel to school by herself. She has so much more confidence and more friends as well. This video is taken at Milagros' school. They are singing the Mexican birthday song and singing it as well. Sorry because you will hear me trying to sing the song that I don't really know the words to. I love how God brings people together to be His hands and feet to the world.
Yesterday I went to Rio 3 with the group. It was ladies day there. Thanks to CAbi (Carol Anderson by invitation) we were able to bless these woman who live in a poor community with 2 new pieces of clothing. God provided the food to feed about 200 children and 200 moms through this group. Betty also shared with these women about God's shelter and Ps. 91. At the end we prayed for Olga the woman who runs the soup kitchen there. She lives about an hour away (as do we) and travels there Every day to minister to these kids and families. At the end of prayer a woman from the group wanted to share with Olga that God gave her a picture of a teapot always pouring out and never becoming empty, she felt God showing her that this was a place of spiritual and physical healing. A few (maybe 5 women) stated behind as Olga said she had been sick this week and worn out. These women prayed over Olga again and God gave Olga what she needed. He sent women from the US to minister to her yesterday. He is so good. He sheltered her and gave her rest, filling her up once again.
One of my pictures, you'll see Erica again. She looks like she is doing well. She's posing with her family. You'll maybe remember her as God healed her 2-3rd degree burns with so little pain. The other pictures are of the sweet children there. Casa de Misiecordia (the name of the church and soup kitchen, is the light in a dark world. There is a lot of crime in this area. Please be praying for shelter for Olga and her husband, for the families and children.
domingo, 7 de junio de 2009
Here are two different birthday songs. One is the kids at school celebrating the summer birthdays of Luke, Evan and Josh. The other is at Imperio de Amor as the girls sing the spanish birthday song to Hope (one of our teachers)
sábado, 6 de junio de 2009
So proud of our boys who graduated from 6th, 3rd and 2nd grades this year. Ben received a most likely to work at Hallmark award because he invented a trick birthday card that everyone wanted to make after he did. Luke got most likely to be an inventor because he thoroughly enjoyed a unit on inventions that had him turning in his invention a week before it was due and Mark got most likely to be a pastor award because of his ability to learn his memory verse and his way of talking about God. We love how God gave us great teacher of Ms. Hope and Ms. Ruby. The boys learned Bible verses and stories and so much more than just their school subjects. We are blessed.
We are in the thick of it again. Here are some photos of our groups hanging out with two of the children's homes we serve. One photo is of two of our interns Emily and Andrea and Christy who is on staff. I was reminded of how good God is as I saw group members playing with kids, showing them love despite their inability to speak the language. At dinner I sat with five high school students from South Dakota and three of our high school teens that live here on campus. I was reminded of how similar teens are no matter where you are born. One of our girls learned that these kids were from a Spanish class. She asked if they were required to come for their class of if they wanted to come. One girl spoke up quickly stating that she wanted to come. The Mexican teen shook her head and said why would you come here and work on your vacation. The American teen said, I am here because God wants me here and I want to do what he asks of me. I was beaming knowing God was at work in both of there lives. At worship tonight God impressed upon me to pray for a friend that I know who is hurting. After worship was over I went to pray for her, to pray for healing. I don't know what I'm doing when it comes to healing but God does. We prayed. I walked away knowing I was obedient and leaving all the rest up to the Lord.
What a great day. Lord, may I be obedient in all you ask me to do and find your rest and joy. Amen.