Pray for Zimbabwe

In light of the recent election debacle, Zimbabweans are in danger of civil war. The Mugabe regime does not want to back down. Pray that this does not grow into a war, but that the defeated party would peacefully step aside.

Free Rice

Listening to Edgar Meyer right now...I was just over at www.freerice.com, where it took me a couple minutes to donate 400 grains of rice for free through the UN World Food Program. Next time you're surfing the web, head over to this site and just answer a few vocab questions. That's all it takes!

Should Children Witnesss Childbirth?

Thought this was a fun little story:

Due to a power outage, only one paramedic responded to the call. The house was very dark so the paramedic asked Kathleen, a 3-yr old girl to hold a flashlight high over her mommy so he could see while he helped deliver the baby. Very diligently, Kathleen did as she was asked. Heidi pushed and pushed and after a little while, Connor was born. The paramedic lifted him by his little feet and spanked him on his bottom. Connor began to cry. The paramedic then thanked Kathleen for her help and asked the wide-eyed 3-yr old what she thought about what she had just witnessed. Kathleen quickly responded, "He shouldn't have crawled in there in the first place......smack his ass again!"

Compassionate

We are wrapping up a series at Saturday Night Grace entitled "In Search of a New Heart." I had the chance to open up the series with a look at the compassionate heart. We shared stories from our spring break mission trips to Memphis and Honduras and I followed up with some thoughts on compassion. If you have 15 minutes, you can listen to the teaching here http://www.illinilife.org/study.

Today's Prayer

Just finished reading Pilgrim Heart by Darryl Tippens, and found this prayer by Thomas Merton in the last chapter. A prayer that seems all too fitting for the story that I have found myself in this very day...

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone."

Casa Hogar Vida

Translation: "House Home Life"

It's not as soul-stirring when you say it in English, or so I've been told by native Spanish speakers, but Casa Hogar Vida is a life-changing project that Iglesia Gran Comision has begun in Choluteca, Honduras and we got to encounter the construction during its genesis phase.

I'm sad that I haven't posted much yet about our adventure in Honduras. We've been back for a couple weeks now, but life just now seems to be easing up on the accelerator. We've unpacked. Caught up on email. Cleaned the apartment. Replenished the fridge. Sent out our newsletter.

And, likely, we've begun to slip back into our numbed reality once again.

Perfect time to go back and reflect then. :)

A few years ago, the Fawcett family crossed the pond and visited Honduras for the first time. Ian and Julie had finished up seminary near Nottingham and were ready to confront some of life's greatest challenges: poverty and HIV/AIDS. For years, they had a vision to confront these issues in partnership with the Church and after some help from the UN, they began to map out a vision to help transform a community that was suffering under the double-helix of poverty and AIDS. It was a 5-year plan. More than a plan. It was a vision. A God-inspired, Gospel-centered vision. They prayed. They waited.

While in Honduras, the Fawcetts met Giovanni, who is a bi-vocational pastor at Iglesia Gran Comision in Choluteca, Honduras.

For some time, Pastor Giovanni, a successful doctor at a local hospital, had witnessed the horrors of HIV/AIDS. In the past few years, a great team of men and women from his church had started a malnutrition clinic, a daycare, tortilla factory, bakery, construction projects, micro-loans - all projects designed to help the poor climb out of the cycle of poverty and discover the freedom and forgiveness of Jesus Christ. But now, Giovanni believed it was time to reach out to the ostracized AIDS population of Honduras, which is home to one of the highest proportions of HIV/AIDS victims in Central America. He and his team formed a plan. A God-centered vision to begin a community center over a 5-year period. They prayed. They waited.

It is no coincidence that the separate visions of these Honduran and British men and women came together like hand and glove. God was in this.

The Fawcetts, including their two teenage kids, moved to Choluteca after language training in Costa Rica. A large plot of land was purchased outside of town and ground was broke in November 2007 for the first home of Casa Hogar Vida.

The vision for this extensive community center includes: 150-200 homes for families affected or infected by HIV/AIDS, 10 orphanage homes, a brick factory, a clinic, a chapel, a missionary house, a food distribution center, sports fields, fruit and vegetable farms. And most importantly: houses that children and families can call home for life. A place where they will find love and acceptance and freedom.

The gospel of Christ is at the very core of this entire project. It is the gospel that gives those affected and infected by HIV/AIDS in the horrifically ostracized culture of Honduras a foundation of hope.

The Fawcetts and the local church of Iglesia Gran Comision are a part of spreading that hope like a life-giving disease to the poor of Honduras.

You can learn more at http://casahogarvida.blogspot.com

More related posts to come...

Change in Zim?

It seems that Mugabe's reign may be coming to an end and I can only hope that this means good news for the people of Zimbabwe who have been suffering at the hands of his regime for years. I was there very briefly during this period of inflation and instability and I pray that God will revitalize this nation.

Read more here: http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSL0369354220080403