Tuesday, August 23, 2016


My 6th baby came in July and made her place as the youngest of the other girls. 2 months old and so so adorable! A head full of black curls. One look at you and my eyes lit up. I knew you were now mine. I was amazed at your tiny body but oh so chubby cheeks. Your daddy died before you were born and your mama is no where to be found. It was a breath of fresh air to receive a baby that came without one bit of sickness in the body. Amandalina, you are loved. I had a vision that morning. I would receive a little baby. I would bring another crib into the room and set up your belongings. I saw it all in my head, but shorty forgot about it. Assuming I was day dreaming. But little did I know, you were in route as I was thinking about you. You were on your way to make your grand appearance at your new home. Weighing in at 8 pounds it was a joy to unpack the newborn clothes and start watching you grow from the very beginning. I love you my little sunshine. Welcome home.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

The watermelon house

I was driving down Route one. The main road to get anywhere around here. I drive it a few times a week. Several times a month. For the last 3 years. This road gives breathtaking scenery. Crystal blue oceans on the left and green lush mountains on the right. Usually I am taken away by the beauty of God's masterpiece, but this time something caught my eye. There are watermelons for sale all along this road and there are hundreds of little house huts on the mountainside next to the watermelon sellers. All I know was that it was the push from God to stop the car and walk up to these huts. Fear was in me as I wondered who these people were. If they would accept me intruding in their lives. My mind was racing as I tried to think of what to say. Why after three years did I decide to approach these people? But when I arrived at the house, already out of breath from the hike up, walking on rocks and weaving in and out of watermelon vines, my heart fell out of my chest.  I tried to act as calm as possible but inside I was raging. I was overwhelmed. I was hurt.  7 people live here. 2 of them are children. The house is made of sticks and leaves and trash. It is about 4 feet tall. Inside is about 6 feet long and 5 feet wide. I had to get on my hands and knees to go inside. Abject poverty is what this is. The 8 year old little girl is named Gabiana. She calls this little hut home. She was so beautiful but so shy as she smiled with her two front teeth missing. They were a sweet family. A loving family. And if I didn't do anything to deserve being born in the USA, then they did nothing to deserve living like this. We as followers of Christ must do something. Making disciples. Going to all nations. Feeding the hungry. It is not a choice. It's a command. And we must respond. We have to start doing something. We cannot sit idle any longer. These 2 children have nothing. Absolutely nothing. Her skirt, which she has worn every day for the past two weeks, is made out of packaging cloth. His shoes were not only too small, but didn't match. Of course the hair was orange and the bellies were swollen. There was not one drop of water to drink or bathe or cook with anywhere around. And the nearest place to get water is a mile aw
ay. "Let us be the ones who say we do not accept that a child dies every 3 seconds simply because he does not have the medicine you and I have. Let us be the ones to say that we are not satisfied that your place of birth determines your right to life. Let us be outraged, let us be loud, and let us be bold." - Brad Pitt Noel Yeatts said "What is crucial in life- what matters and what doesn't-   becomes clear when you deal with life and death issues. One of their kids already died. From a fever. Because there was no tylenol to lower the heat. And no water to cool the skin. And it hurts to see us get so wrapped up in ourselves. In the threads on our shirts, in the stuff in our mansion. It hurts that I have running water and my neighbor doesn't. I cry at night knowing that Gabiana is getting soaked in this storm and I'm sleeping peacefully under a roof. She doesn't know her birthday. Of course she doesn't. Because when you are trying to stay alive every day, searching for food, walking miles for water....something as trivial as a birthday does not matter in the grand scheme of things. While I was talking to the family, the dad walked away. He returned a few moments later with a watermelon. I knew exactly what he was going to do. He was going to do what the people of Haiti always do. He was going to gift me this watermelon even though he had nothing. Even though this was probably his dinner. I've learned a lot from Haitians. They are teaching me how to share. How to give sacrificially. How to help unconditionally. But I am a slow learner. I read this quote from Ann Voskamp. "We are not giving what we are called to give, unless that giving affects how we live- affects what we put on our plate and where we make our home and hang our hat and what kind of threads we have to have on our back. Surplus giving is the leftover you can afford to give; sacrificial giving is the love gift that changes how you live- because the love of Christ has changed you. God doesn't want your leftovers. God wants your love overtures, your first-overs, because He is your first love." These people get it. They understand it. They sacrificially gave. And I pray to God they are blessed 7fold because of it. There are 3 houses like this. These people stick together through it all. All are in need of prayer and love and blessings. So let's give them what we would give our sister for a baby shower. Lets give what we would give our daughter for a house warming shower. Lets give them our best, because Jesus gave us His best. Lets give until it hurts. And that is when we truly will show His love to the nations and beyond. Through sacrificially giving. And in return, I promise you will be the one that feels blessed.

Monday, August 1, 2016

School for kids. Jobs for parents

Kids in school = Parent jobs I heard a knock at the gate. It was Lovemica and her mama. They had returned to my house to ask once more if I would take the rambunctious two-year-old. She sat back down at my table and I talked with the mom. Tears were streaming down her cheeks as she explained to me that she had nothing. Nothing at all. And she was the only one her daughter had. Nobody else was around to help. And my heart broke in two. This was the third time this month someone has arrived at my gate with a child. A child they loved, and cared for, and wanted, but had no way of providing for her. I explained how much a child needs their mama. I told them that their daughter yearns for them. And if there’s any way possible of keeping the child united with family, that is the road we will take. So I drove Lovemica and her mama back to their tiny house where 10 other people slept. Lovemica showed me the floor that she slept on and showed me her closet. Which was empty. Except for the 3 outfits I had given her. So I hired the mom. She now will be washing clothes for the ministry 3 days a week. No I didn’t need to add another staff member, and no I don’t know yet how I’ll even be able to pay her, but her daughter needs food. Her daughter needs to go to school. Her daughter needs a future. I don’t know where the money will come from, but I am going to have faith that God will provide. I hate to see these mamas at the end of the road. Giving up. I will do whatever it takes to keep these kids with their mamas.
So I am trying to figure out how to start building the school. Because this is the ultimate answer. This year I will register Lovemica in a school about 15 minutes away. But, this school won’t feed her, and doesn’t have the means to provide a decent education. They also aren’t able to hire her mama for work. I want to provide jobs. In order to do that, we need to send the kids to school. This gives the parents the ability to provide for their own children which gives them an initiative and gives them pride and gives them the opportunity to get out of poverty, to make a difference, to be educated, and learn new skills, and the chance to say “I was given a chance, I was given help, and now I can feed my child.” And that’s what I want more than anything. To see these women, have the opportunity and resources to raise their children and send them to school. We have to get to the deeper core of the problem though. Education and jobs go hand and hand. We build a school, hire the parents, teach the kids, feed the kids a meal every day. The result? An end to the vicious cycle of poverty. That’s why we are building a school. Not only will the children be taught, but the parents will have jobs. “Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.” So Lovemica will not be #6 in my home. But she will be cared for and feed from a distance. And her mom had the biggest smile on her face, knowing that tonight there will be food on the table, and tomorrow is a new day. The day she will start her new job I so badly want to provide more jobs. This is what these people need. But in order to provide jobs, I have to have the money to pay them. So I ask you to prayerfully consider donating to the employees at La Limye.
They are not only taking care of this ministry and keeping the day to day operations moving steadily, but they are also being able to feed their families and not drop their kids off at orphanages. 2 of my employees have been able to open up a small business with their salary. They sell juice, cookies, and rice. YOU are making a difference in their lives. Not just for the ministry but for their home life too.
Lovemica, Melissa, and Patiana, I will find a way to sponsor you every month. I will build you and every other needy child a school. I promise to feed you every day and teach you the love of Jesus. I will find a way to give your moms and dads a way to make money. I will not forget you. I didn’t take you in because I knew what was best for you. To stay with your mama. Stay strong sweet girls. Your heavenly father loves you. He will never leave you nor forsake you. Now let’s build this school. School + meals = jobs, full bellies, and happy hearts.