May and June have been very busy months for us. I went to Kentucky to speak at the Christian Alliance for Orphans conference. It was such an honor to be asked to do a workshop during the conference. I got up at 3:am to drive there, and do the workshop, then got up at 3:am again the next morning to drive back home. It was a very hard/fast trip, but I think very worthwhile. Not only was I blessed to see so many people actively engaged in helping orphans, but the seminar I did on excellence in short term mission was very well attended and received.
Shortly after returning from Kentucky, Orphanos hosted our annual golf tournament. That thing is a lot of work to put on, but it has paid off in helping to fund office help for me. We had almost a full course of golfers, and everyone has told me it was a “top notch” event.
Red and Yellow, Black and White; they are precious in His sight! The words of the old children’s song were never truer than when members from Tennessee’s “The Church on the Square” invaded “Robins Nest Children’s Home” in John’s Hall Jamaica this month. Black adults with white kids, white adults with black kids, and a whole mix and match of shades of tan was the order of the day! It was a common sight to see laughing kids on the laps of adults, people who just met serving each other through doing dishes, mopping floors, folding laundry, feeding kids meals, and painting side by side. We really believe it was a small picture of what heaven is going to be like; multi-ethnic, multi racial, multi-gender, multi-generational, and multi-denominational all working together for the benefit of the kids and the glory of the Creator. One of the workers at the home who has seen many “mission teams” come and go over the years had this to say; “Ya’ll not like dem udder teams are ya? Yu kyan work! Cum back ahny time mon! Ahny time!” That made us feel really good. Orphanos facilitates and leads teams year round to our partner homes. It was my blessing and privilege to lead the team at the end of June.
Audrey is out of school now, so she comes with me most days. Along with Aly who is with me all the time anyway, we make a funny threesome! Audrey did get to go with me to Jamaica, and that was really encouraging. She did a VBS program for a few days at our church too, but other than that I’ve been juggling a lot while keeping them all day every day. Angela is working, working, working. She did take one weekend to go see her mom and sister, but other than that she’s been holding down the fort here at home. Great lady that Angela!
Late in June we drove almost three hours down into Mississippi to take Audrey to her first full blown summer camp! She had a great time, but I could write an entire blog about the father’s emotions driving off leaving his first and precious daughter alone with all those wild heathen. “Does the director of this camp know she’s hired nothing but youth barely old enough to not be campers themselves?” “Were those horses I saw? Does anyone here know that horses can kick you?” “Excuse me Ma’am, do you have separate bath facilities for boys and girls?”
Of course all my fears were completely ridiculous, but it doesn’t negate the reality of them as I’m driving away with my stomach in my shoes and a tear in my eye. God is good, all the time; my daughter came home 7 days later better than I left her there. And in the process I had another opportunity to be reminded, that she is on loan to me, and not owned by me. And that even when I am standing next to her, ultimately her safety and well being is not the least bit dependent on me. And I guess in my most honest moments I will admit, that’s a good thing.
Our office team is growing. The CPA still hasn’t made it to us, but we did hire a summer helper to help me with the teams and also a part time lady (from South Africa!) to help Jennifer with the child sponsorship stuff. So right now there are four of us here. Now if I can just get some of my own work done…. J
Up next is a trip early in July to Ecuador for Wayne, and to Winchester for Angela and the girls. Then later in July I go to Georgia for a quick meeting, and then we host Lucy Palma (from Colombia) in God’s bedroom. Early in August we’re hoping to get a short vacation (yes, I said vacation!) to a friend’s beachfront home. Then back on the road to Colombia again. Go go go.
Thanks everyone for praying and supporting us. We’re deeply grateful.