Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Looking After The Sick

Matthew 25:36 and 40 says: “I was sick and you looked after me . . . I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”

Less than 1 week back at Masana and already I’m spending hours doing just that….looking after the sick.

Tuesday morning, one the street boys, Fabiao, was hit by a car. A couple of the boys told me about it when they arrived at Masana. So off I went to the hospital in search of Fabiao. Now, in case you’ve missed my past stories about the central hospital here in Maputo, let me refresh your memory: everything at the hospital is still done on paper…not computers. There wasn’t any record of him at the front desk where all patients to the ER are supposed to check in. The police at the hospital also had no record of the accident. So a very kind worker took me from department to department looking for Fabiao. Finally we found a nurse who remembered treating a boy who lived on the street.

Praise the Lord, Fabiao’s injuries were not severe. He just had a couple of scrapes and cuts. The doctor wanted to discharge him but since he lives on the street, decided it was better for him to stay overnight at the hospital. The whole thing actually worked out quite well for Fabiao! He got a bed to sleep in for a night and lots of food - from the hospital, me, and the person who was driving the car that hit him. And today when the doctor released him from the hospital, the driver of the car bought Fabiao new clothes and sandals because the clothes he had on when the accident happened were thrown away. I hope other street kids don’t catch onto this and start stepping out in front of cars!!!

Another one of our boys, Samera, is also in the hospital. He is 17 years old. He has diabetes and when he’s on the streets it’s nearly impossible to control. One of his friends took him to the hospital last week and he has not been discharged yet. He has told me that he’d like to go live with his grandfather when he gets out of the hospital. Please pray for Samera. Pray he will realize the danger he puts himself in by living on the streets and that he will stick to this plan to return home.

Although the past couple of days have been full of walking to and from the hospital many times (my car is still not repaired), I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. It’s these times of caring for one of the boys when they are sick or injured that I really bond with them. God promises that in all things He works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purposes. Though I hate to see my boys sick or injured, I love that the Lord uses it to lavish His love on them through me!!!

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Kunhymela House

We Got a House!!!!!

The Lord has been so faithful in this whole process. It is not an easy thing to find a house in Mozambique. Unfortunately, there is a lot of dishonesty we came up against with various real estate agents. It was over a week ago that my friends first looked at this house. Since then, we met to discuss a contract with the original owner with plans to sign the next day. After leaving our meeting, the owner found someone to buy the house and chose to sale rather than rent to us. We were disappointed but didn't feel it was a closed door. Instead we persistently sought out the new owner. He was open to talking about our project and, in the end, rented to us.

All along, we believed this was the house God was going to give us. That didn't mean it would be easy to get to the point of signing a contract. I feel like the Lord was asking, "Do you trust me? Do you believe that I speak to you? Then persevere in this." And now we reap the rewards!

As Ian, Steve, Alexis and I prepare to move into this new house and begin setting up temporary housing for street kids, I am reminded of the verse in Psalm 127:1:
"Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain..."

Father, we invite you to come and build this house. Build this project. Be glorified in the Kunyhmela house!!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Masana Prayer Requests

Masana will reopen after our holidays on January 25. Here are a few things I'd love for y'all to pray about as we begin a new year!

* Pray that any new boys on the street will feel welcome at Masana.

* At times there are problems at Masana between the older and younger boys. Pray for Masana to be a place of peace where the problems from the street can be forgotten. Pray for God to transform the hearts of the older boys and that they will begin caring for a protecting the younger ones.

* Pray for the boys as we begin teaching basic literacy and mathematics. Many of them come in with no knowledge of how to read or write. Pray for their ability to learn.

* Pray for the health of the boys. Life on the streets is harsh and their bodies are often weak because of poor nutrition.

* Pray for protection over the boys. There is a good deal of violence and robbery among the adults and kids on the streets. Pray also for protection from those who would seek to abuse the boys.

* Pray for protection from AIDS and that the boys would not ignore the risk of sexual activity and drug use.

* The boys often get caught up in small theft to make money on the street. Pray for conviction.

* Pray for salvation and for true transformation in their lives as they hear the Word of God. Pray that the Holy Sprit will make Himself known to them in creative ways.

* Pray for hope to be restored. We have a handful of boys who have been on the streets for 3 or more years with no desire to return home. Pray God will do a work in their lives and reveal to them the plans and purposes He has for their lives.

* Pray for boys to grasp the value of family. We want to see lots of them come to the decision to leave life on the street and return to their families. Pray also for the finances to help all that want to go back home (About $500 per a boy to buy clothes, basic necessities, school fees and supplies, and start up a small business).

* Pray for the boys that do go back home....that they will transition back to life in the community. Pray against the temptation to return to the streets. Also, pray that they will find a solid church in their communities to continue growing in the Lord.

* Pray for the Masana staff as we seek the Lord on how to care for and minister to the street boys. Pray for us to be filled with more and more of the Father's love for the boys.

* Pray for creative ways to teach the boys about the heart of the Father.

* Pray for our director, Pastor Paulo, and his wife. They are expecting their first child soon.

* Masana has 6 Mozambicans on staff and one missionary (that's me!). Pray for God's provision in each of our lives.

* Pray for vision as Masana grows. Pray for God's strategy to be revealed as we help the street boys.

* Pray for continued provision for all of Masana's financial needs.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

House Hunting

I am back in Mozambique after 7 weeks in the States. And I came back to lots of fun new adventures! In October, some new friends moved to Maputo to begin a new project called Kunhymela House. Their heart is to support existing projects for street kids. As we talked and prayed about the need here in Maputo, we decided on the idea of providing temporary housing for boys living on the street. Most of the boys on the streets are runaways and we really want to see them return to their families. With that in mind, we don't want to feed the idea that life on the street is good by giving the boys lots of stuff. The vision of Kunhymela House is to provide a place where boys can sleep when they are really sick and to provide transitional housing for boys who are preparing to leave the streets and return to their families.

For a few months now, those connected with Kunhymela House (Ian, Alexis, Lauren and Steve) have been searching for a house. Now that I'm back in Maputo, I've joined the hunt as I will be living with them. (I'll continue working with Masana and serve as a connection between the 2 projects). We want a house large enough for all of us to live as well as space for housing boys. We'd also like to have room for visitors or teams that come to Maputo on mission trips. Since November, we've found a few possibilities but nothing has come through yet. We are asking God to provide the perfect house where we will be able to live in community and provide a safe place for street kids to heal - physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

We have found a great possibility - a house with 5 bedrooms and 2 guest rooms on the property. We will be meeting with the owner of the house this weekend to discuss details of a contract. Please pray for wisdom and favor as we meet.

I'll keep you updated as the house hunt continues and the vision of Kunhymela House comes together!