November 20, 2012

Progress at Trees of Glory

The familiar sound of a barking dog wakes me up.  I'm groggy and realize that my dog shouldn't be outside so late at night.  I open my eyes and an unfamiliar room greets me.  My sleepy mind is confused, but slowly I remember. 

I'm in Ethiopia.

The images from the day flood my mind.  A long flight brought us to Addis and sweet reunions with good friends.  Another long trip and we arrived at Trees of Glory.  The familiar buildings were surrounded by progress.  In just one year the property has been transformed and teems with children in new brightly colored uniforms.  Simret was incredibly proud to show us around.  Water points for children and the village, cisterns, a pump, electricity, cattle, chickens, a garden...miracles.

The well and pump are kept safe 24 hours a day by a guard who lives a few feet from the well.

A poultry farm provides the children at the carepoint with eggs, an abundance allows locals to come to the carepoint to purchase eggs.  A record breaking 170 eggs were laid the day we visited.

Last, but not least, the water flows at the two water points.  Running water is the key to many of the successes the CarePoint has experienced.

November 5, 2012

Unlikely Activists

I met a sweet group of believers last spring.

I had known about this tight knit church since last November.  They sent blankets all monogrammed with the church's name and the words, "Jesus loves you."  Each time I handled one of the their blankets I wondered about the people who would take so much time to stitch each blanket.  I got to meet them personally one Sunday night.  They had a service set aside to hear about the trip and the blankets.  It always feels good to me to personally thank a group who worked for the children.

This church, off a country road at the edge of a small town, has been so touched by the plight of the children.  They made blankets but wanted to do more.  An unlikely group of activists, the grandmother of one of our team members decided to organize a "Songfest" to benefit Kind Hearts School.  She invited local musicians for a night of worship.  I found myself, again, welcomed into this small church.

Standing before the crowded pews, I shared the story of the children in Ethiopia.  I poured out my heart, trying to explain that these buildings are more than just a school.  The children who beg and wander the streets are numerous.  They are naked, hungry, and hopeless.  Halfway through the night, the church took up an offering.  That little church on the dead end street at the edge of a small town gave sacrificially.  They generously bought t-shirts and magazine bead jewelry.  At the end of the night, over $1000 had been donated to Kind Hearts school fund.  An unlikely group of people reached across the ocean to pour out Christ's love on children they have never met.