Thursday, June 25, 2009

What would you do?

We received word this morning that the roof on the building at the carepoint we hold dear has been blown off by a wind storm. While we are very proud to have the building, it was in pretty rough shape. There were holes in the tin roof, holes in the walls and the mortar in between the blocks was beginning to erode away. I imagine it didn't take much to destroy what was there.

This building is critical to the ongoing efforts of Kriek and Jumbo Gerber and Children's HopeChest to develop relationships and disciple the people of that area. Food and supplies are kept in a small room in the building. When children come to the carepoint that are sick, the Go-Go's let them sleep on a mat in the building. When the weather is not conducive for being outside, they all pack into the building to seek shelter. Without a building to store food and the pots to cook in, there is no food for the children. We simply cannot and will not allow that to happen.

We need your help. If you feel led to help with this project, please contact me @ right away. We are on a mission to gather funds by this weekend and begin repair immediately. In the meantime, please prayerfully consider what it is you can do and keep praying for the people of this area. Will you help?

It is so easy to see the good in this happening. Matthew 7:24-27 Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, and the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.

Our prayer is that in every deed, word, thought - in everything that is done, it will be to Glorify our ord and expand His Kingdom. Blessings -

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Team is HOME!

We made the trek to Atlanta early this morning to pick-up the team. While they all are heartbroken, they all seem to be doing ok physically. Many of them slept this afternoon, which was to be expected. I will update with photos in the next couple of days.

Thank you, Team, for giving of yourselves this way!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Team in Nelspruit

Got a phone call from Nelspruit, South Africa! My Bride, Ashley, at a pace of 112 m.p.h., began telling me all she could in a short period of time! End result? The Team is doing really well. It was difficult for them to leave Thulwane this morning. They feel like they are leaving a huge part of their hearts there. And they are. They fostered and strengthened relationships that have transformed lives in Swaziland, as well as in the U.S. Everyone's heart is broken... and that is not a bad thing. In that brokenness is where we find Jesus.

They are now resting at the hotel and will get up in the morning and visit the market and maybe witness some of God's creation in and around Nelspruit. Please continue to pray for them and for the people of Swaziland. Blessings -

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Tuesday Update

Heard from the team this morning! Every team member is doing really well. There have been no problems to speak of. The Holy Spirit is moving at the carepoint! The older kids are opening up - which is a big deal. Because of their culture, there has been an emotional wall with many of the older kids and some of the adults. Reports are that the prayers you have been offering are being answered! Please keep praying for this! We also received news that the land the carepoint is on has been purchased (in full)! This is yet another prayer answered! We could not do anything from a monetary investment stanpoint (facilities) until Kriek and Jumbo could acquire the land. Please pray for God's will to be very clear to those who will make the decisions on how to move forward. Keep pressing forward, Team! Do not take one hug, one prayer, one encouraging word or a single ounce of energy with you when you leave the carepoint today! Leave it all there!!! Blessings -

Monday, June 15, 2009

No News is Good News

We did not hear from the Team on Sunday or today. As always, this means things are going great! Please keep the Team in your hearts, minds and prayers! Blessings -

Sunday, June 14, 2009

As For Me and My House...

Today, the team will be at Thulwane leading bible study along with the D-Team. Another project will be to paint the Home that Love built. Before the house is to be painted, scripture will be written on the walls. This home will be covered in the Word of God and has been dedicated to Him. We had dozens of people submit the scripture that will be written.

For the team today, please offer a prayer of thanksgiving for the people of Swaziland, for the AIM staff, for Childrne's HopeChest, for the sponsors of the children and for the partners in ministry. Our prayer is that God be magnified in all they do. Blessings -

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Word up!

Got a brief word from the team today! Of course, everything is going well! Since our partnership with AIM and Children's HopeChest began at Thulwane in February, 2007, we have seen an incredible transformation with the people of that community. God has worked through Kriek and Jumbo Gerber, the "D" Team, the Go-Go's and even the older children. We are so priveleged to be a representative of our Savior! He has wrecked our hearts for the good and that is what calls us to action. Thank you, Jesus!

Please allow me to share a bit of scripture that reminds me of the mission of not only our team from the States, but our team in Swaziland:
Matthew 5: 13 "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness,how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men."

14 "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

Our prayer is that anything we do or say reflect the immense love of God.

Friday, June 12, 2009

In a flash...

In a flurry this morning, several of our team members updated their status on facebook.. They were in and out in a matter of minutes! While we would love to hear more from them, I am sure you will agree that we would rather have them in the field than in the office! I will summarize what was posted this morning.

In a brief email from Crystal Baltimore:

"Hey! Things here are GREAT!! You would not believe how big the kids are and how much they have changed! Love is walking and talking and gving everyone kisses... Tomorrow is BIG FUN day and we are having jump castle, cupcakes, hot dogs and who knows what else!

Our lodging has been great and we all have been getting settled in. We did medical clinic today and there were soooooo many new little one's. Everyone is doing good. Ashley made it through the flight, no problems... well, LOTS of questions but no major issues.

As for prayer needs, please continue to pray for the relationship with the older kids to be more open and easier..pray for the relationship with the Go-Go's and for safe travel and good health for the team. Kriek and Jumbo are great!!!"

Updates to facebook:

"Stephanie Sharpe Sirmons is in Swaziland having a tremendous time. I can't tell you what a blessing it is to be here, loving on these precious babies. Please tell Madalyn and MaryDee we love them and we hope to talk to them soon. I can't wait to tell ya'll how amazing this country is, and how much we love these children aready. It is absolutely unbelievable. Love ya'll!"

"Allison Sides Clyburn is in Swaziland having an AMAZING time! It can't get much better than this! Please tell Madeline and Emma that Mom and Dad miss them very much! We love you, but we are still doing God's work in Swaziland! Lulu, Sipho, and Gilligan are doing fantastic and all say 'Hello!' We hope we can talk to you soon! Love, Mom and Dad!"

"Steven Thomas Stone is at the AIM office in Swaziland!!!!! Love you guys! Keep praying."

"Ashley Shirley Vann is in Swaziland and loving it! We had an awesome experience today at the carepoint providing a medical clinic. Bud, it's everything you said it would be! You won't believe the transformation with Love! I have some very good video for you!!! I love everyone and keep praying!!"

"Amy McAdams - Hey everyone! We are here and safe. Having a wonderful time. Please tell my family we are missing them! We love you all....Pray for us!!!!"

The common denominator? Child-like faith and a vision of hope!

So there you have it. You know what I know. Blessings -

Thursday, June 11, 2009

No word today...

No official word today - which means everything is going well! It is difficult for us to have patience or understand why we cannot get word from our team - things are different in Swaziland - especially from a technological perspective. Internet is an absolute luxury. So here we are. Waiting to hear and to share in the daily victories the team will experience. While waiting, we can continue to pray. And pray. And pray some more. Let's honor our team by lifiting them to our Father.

1 John 5: 15-15 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, he hears us. And if we know that He hears us - whatever we ask - we know that we have what we asked of Him.

The key is for us to seek His will. And if we ask for His will to be done and for us to clearly see His will, then our prayers will be answered. It's all about alignment!

Father, I come to You with a soft heart tonight. We miss the members of this team so much. While it would have been really good to hear form them, I know that You have annointed each of them and they are in Your will. Please continue to bless them and those they encounter. I know Your light is shining through them. Thank You for that. Thank You for using them to teach us. Thank You for giving us the opportunity to lift each one of them up to You. Thank You for giving us patience and a sense of calm while we eagerly wait to hear from them. Whatever Your will is for this team, I gladly ask You to reveal it to us. It is not about us. It's about You. We want to glorify You in all we do and all we say. Please use the team of people who are here supporting and praying for the team. Use us to glorify You with our words and actions when we tell other people about this campaign. I ask for these and all other blessings in the precious name of Jesus. Amen.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Team is resting....

I just received an email to let us know the team made it to the hotel. Kriek and Jumbo had snacks waiting for them! Everyone is doing well and "very excited!" Ashley said everyone did fine on the flight. They leave early in the morning for Swaziland! Lodging plans have changed a little. The team is no longer staying at Emifini. I am not sure where they are staying but I have been assured they do not have internet access.. Jumbo has already stepped up and told the team he would make arrangements for them to get us a message when he can. Please join in covering the team in prayer - also please pray for Kriek and Jumbo, the D team and that every move that is made, every word that is spoken, will show the love of Jesus. Blessings -

Team landed safely in Johannesburg!

According to Delta, Team Swaziland has landed in Johannesburg, South Africa. Praise the Lord! Lets all join in to continuously cover them in prayer! We will update just as soon as we have made contact. More than likely it will be late tonight. Blessings -

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Boarding Call at 8:35 pm, cst.

After a delay of little over an hour, our Team is boarding! I spoke to several of them and they are all in high spirits and very excited to be on their way! Crystal and Ashley will email me when they can and I will update the blog just as soon as I receive the information. Speaking from experience, please take the time to reply to these posts... they will all huddle around a laptop to read the messages!!!

Thank all of you for your prayers, support, supplies, encouragement and wisdom you all have shared in recent months with our team! We are all so blessed because of you! We hope to have an update tomorrow night.

God is so very good! Please feel free to join us in giving thanks and praise to our Lord!

Monday, June 1, 2009

THE House that Love Built

The one-year anniversary to our team’s first campaign in Swaziland is next week. There will be a team of 19 people going back to share the love of Jesus. While there, the team has the opportunity to paint a new home. Because of some very generous people, Love, Mandisa, Mugelo and Blue now have a new home! A floor that isn’t dirt, a roof that doesn’t leak, doors that lock, windows to see thru…. no more bugs crawling through the cracks in the walls of the hut. No more sleeping in the mud. No more unwanted visitors who will harm them. No more of that. A home. A real home.

We want to thank those who selflessly gave money toward this project. In particular, the McAdams family. We want to thank Kriek and Jumbo Gerber, Dennis and Zwakele Brock, Children’s HopeChest, Adventures in Missions, the “D” Team and the people of Thulwane for looking out for these four little Angels.

I mentioned our team painting the house when they are there in mid-June. Before the painting begins, we plan to cover the house in Scripture. Scripture will be actually written on the walls – a blanket of protection – and then the final coat of paint. So this is where we need your help. Please take part in this project by submitting your favorite scripture to us. It can be any number of verses. How cool is it that we all can play a part in covering this home with the Word and with Love? Please pray that this home will be a springboard for a healthier, happier life for these children. Now bring it!