Monday, June 27, 2011

Prayers Answered

Everyone can agree that times are still hard.  People are still loosing their jobs or unable to find one, people are all trying to find ways to cut back on their spending, and we are feeling it everywhere.  The child sponsorship department at AMG has felt it too.  We have been losing more sponsors then we've been gaining.  Both Stephanie and I have been searching for new ways to find sponsors and praying that God would touch the hearts of many to sponsor a child. 

In my last newsletter I asked my supporters to pray about sponsoring a child...and just pray that more people would sign up to sponsor a child.  Well, God has answered our prayers and this month I have been happily busy assigning new sponsors to children in need.  It has been so encouraging and exciting!  God is always faithful...

Many coming back from a Mission Adventure want to sponsor a child they met, some who already sponsor a child with AMG want to sponsor another, some of my readers responded and decided to sponsor a child, and we have many advocates who are sharing the exciting things that happens in the life of a sponsored child.  God is so good!  Please continue to pray, there are still many children waiting for a sponsor and many new childcare centers we would like to open!

On another note...
Friday night I spoke at a Cumberland Springs Bible Camp in Dayton, Tennessee.  My husband and many of my friends grew up attending this camp...and after hearing about how much fun it is...I wish I had attended the camp growing up!  Anyway, it was an honor that they asked me to come and challenge the 10-13 (tweens) and share with them what is going on all over the world.  Can I just say that I was very nervous.  I was like the main speaker...I had thirty minutes to fill...yikes.  I planned and prepared and planned some more.  I had pictures, a game, a video, and I even brought candy.  Anyway, the time finally came and again...God answers prayers!  I asked many to pray for me and I was praying constantly that God would calm my nerves, give me the words to say, and that I wouldn't be boring.  I can only give all the credit to God because those kids were so attentive and engaged (at least it looked like they were ;).  I shared with them about the poverty many children live in who are just like them.  I told them they could be part of what God is doing in these kids lives.  I encouraged them to get involved!  I created these little note cards with a child on it who needed a sponsor.  I sent each of them home with one so they could pray for that child.  I also challenged them to raise $20 for a Bundle of Love.  It was amazing to me that the 30 minutes I was speaking only felt like 10 was so fun!  Oh yeah, and I cried in the middle hah...I got all chocked up sharing about Melanie

Anyway, as the kids left and I handed them an envelope to put their Bundle of Love money in and they all told me they were so glad I came...and I won't forget what one girl said, "I want to me a missionary now too."  When I was their age I attended a camp and heard a missionary speak...and I remember wanting to be a missionary afterwards.  So, it was special to hear this sweet girl tell me that.  I can't wait to see how God will use those young kids to build His Kingdom and glorify Himself! 

It still amazes me that God wants to use me...I'm such a sinner and in desperate need of Christ's redemption...why does he want to use me?  I may never understand why but I hope that I am always willing to do as God asks.  I never want to miss out on the blessing of being used by God. 

This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace. Colossians 1:6

I love this verse, I shared it with the kids on Friday night.  God is working all over the world...don't you want to be part of it?!  I sure do...

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Going to Uganda

So, I'm going to Uganda in August on an AMG Mission Adventure.  It was a bit of a process for me to get here and now that I'm here I don't think it has really sunk in.  You see, when my boss told Stephanie and I that AMG would pay for us to go on a Mission Adventure this year in order to see more Childcare Centers, my first thought was Peru.  But, since I've been to Peru of course I should branch out to see more and learn more.  So, I thought Guatemala.  Stick to what I know and I figured it would also give me motivation to continue learning Spanish.  Well that door opened, then closed, then opened again, and then officially closed.  The only team left was Uganda.  If that isn't God telling me exactly where to go I don't know what is!  So, August 1st I'll be heading to Uganda along with 18 other people from across the country.

It's kind of a big deal for me.  You may think that is crazy because I work at a Mission Organization so...going on a Mission Trip is just another day at the "office".  While I have been working at AMG for over two years I haven't been on a real mission trip since the summer after I graduated High School in 2003...due to many different circumstances in life (which is for another time and place).
I'm excited to say the least.  Sure, I have some reservations (which is why I didn't chose Uganda in the first place) like being away from Ryan for 17 days, being in a country which is completely different than any country I've ever been to, seeing the poverty millions of children won't be easy.  But, I'm so excited to see the smiling faces of those precious children sponsored and not sponsored at the AMG Childcare Centers, to love them and tell them how much Jesus loves them, and to encourage them to follow their dreams in life.  I look forward to meeting my Ugandan co-workers, better understand where they are coming from, and develop friendships.
My prayer is that I will be open to whatever God wants to teach me, show me, and have me do.  I pray for strength, safety, health, team unity, and that I will be uncomfortable...because I know I will at times.  Being uncomfortable makes one depend on God more...need Him more.  We all need more of HIM. 

Please pray with me!  I'll continue to write as I prepare for my trip to Uganda and as I'm in Uganda...