Sunday, August 24, 2014

Soweto Sports Day

Last Saturday Joe and I had the privilege of helping out with the Soweto Sports day, which is put on by Africa Nazarene Compassionate Ministries.  Each year they pull together the children from 7 different Child Development Centers and they compete against each other in soccer, volleyball, netball and other relays.  The winning CDC gets the Soweto Sports Day Trophy for the year. 

This year the day started with light rain (which was ironic since it hadn’t rained in over a month).  But that did not put a damper on the kids excitement.  The morning started by gathering all the kids and introducing them to those helping out for the day.  Then using the Evange-ball the Gospel was presented to the kids.  Next, a prayer was offered for the kids and the activities of the day.  Then the rules and activities of the day were explained and the competitions began. 

The kids played hard and there was lots of cheering and dancing by those not competing.  At the end of the day the same CDC that came with the trophy went home with it.  No matter if the kids came from the winning CDC or not they all home with full bellies, hands full of goodies, and lots of great memories.  I don’t know what situations the kids go home to but I know that they went home after being loved on for a day. 

Colleen Patrick-Goudreau said “Don't do nothing just because you can't do everything. Do something.” 

We can’t solve all the problems in the world, we can’t even solve all the problems in our own lives, but that should not stop us from doing something.  It should not stop us from loving and serving those around us.  We can’t do everything, we can’t solve all the problems around us, but we can do something.  We can love on the kids around us, we can give what we can, and share the love of Christ.  We can do something. 

So this week if you get overwhelmed with problems that exist around you don’t let it stop you from acting.  Pray for guidance, wisdom, and discernment and then do something.   

Thursday, August 14, 2014

14 days

14 days is not so long.  14 days doesn’t seem like enough time to truly make an impact.  Mix in the fact that several of those 14 days will be spent traveling from one place to another and one wonders what kind of impact can be made in 14 days. 

It started with a vision.  A vision from God given to Pastor Robert of the Good Hope Church of the Nazarene for a place where the people of the community surrounding the church could be feed spiritually, mentally, emotionally and even financially.  The Church of the Nazarene in Idaho Falls, Idaho became a part of making that vision a reality for two weeks.  A team of 16 people joined together with Pastor Robert’s vision, the people of the church and the surrounding community and a whole lot of God’s grace worked together. 

Master brick layers we were not.  However we did get to watch a master at work.  Tony the brick machine (as the team nick named him) is a gentleman from Hazyview who is working to start his own brick laying business.  We were able to assist Tony in starting the work on Pastor Robert’s vision.  By the time the team left two classrooms were almost done and the other two were well on their way to being done.  The Idaho Falls Team also had a VBS on three different afternoons.  They were able to love on the kids of the community as well as tell them about the Love of Christ. 

We also were able to accompany the team to Kruger Park and see some amazing animals and scenery.  God is truly a wonderful artist.  We were able to see all of the Big 5 as well as lots of Giraffes, Monkeys, Baboons, Hippos, Crocodiles, Birds of all kinds and lots of Impala and Kudu. 

14 days is not really a long time but when joined together with a vision, a group of amazing God loving, hard working people, and God then what is done in 14 days can have eternal results.    Rev. Mashangu (the FSC for our field) said it best: when he told the team that they “left their fingerprints on the community and the people of the Good Hope Church; and the community and the people of the Good Hope Church left their fingerprints on the hearts and lives of all of the team.” 

So this week don’t worry about how much time you have or how much you have to do.  Worry about leaving lasting fingerprints on those you come in contact with. 

Until next time:  Word to the wise when unlocking the back of the van; be sure not to break the key off in the lock or if you do make sure you have someone who can fix it.