24 lives in 24 hours

How did you spend the last 24 hours? Did you go to work, drive through traffic, stop at Starbucks, eat some take out, play with your kids, take your wife on a date, call your Gramma, walk the dog, watch the news, read your bible, listen to music, rock a baby to sleep, pray, play on your iPhone, read a book, watch a movie, exercise or catch a little sleep?? Or maybe you went to school, skipped a class, shopped online, did some homework, fed the cat, rode a bike, stayed up late, fought with a friend/parent/spouse, spilled the milk, went on Facebook, read this blog, broke a nail & stubbed your toe… again!?

Whatever you did, was it important? Was it time well spent? Are you glad you did it? Did it make a difference?

24 hours seems like enough time to do a lot of things. Or not. You could be very effective or totally useless. You could be helpful, be a blessing to others… Or not.

Why does it matter? Well to me it makes a world of difference what I do with my time, because I happen to know what happens every 24 hours on an island far away where hope is lost & the people are forgotten. Someone is dying every hour, their time has run out. In the last 24 hours, 24 precious islanders have died. 24, every day. In the last 12 months, while we’ve been in the States, 9,500 have been laid to rest. Before we could get there, before we met them. Before they knew our story… His story… THEIR story…

What can we do with the next 24 hours? We could save a life or two… or 24.

24-left

One for every hour.

We need just 24 people to help us, so we can be WITH the 24 that die every 24 hours…

Please Contact us below & ask HOW you can help!  

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a typhoon, a Challenge & a testimony

Typhoon Vicente – July 23, 2012

Howling winds & thundering skies tonight, it feels a bit like standing in a wind tunnel or even like an MRI tunnel… Experiencing a CAT-1 Typhoon (Vicente) on the 51st floor of a highrise can only be described as an altogether NEW experience. However, to quote a song I used to love,  ‘I’m no stranger to the rain’ – in fact I’ve learned to love it. What else can cleanse our world, our life, our souls from all that has tainted it? Without the storms, how would we treasure the calming peace that only God can bring? Our stormy seas teach us as much as we let them, if we share what we learn – we sharpen one another…

It’s been just over 7 months that we’ve been here in Hong Kong… I was just thinking of putting together some thoughts on how God’s been working in our lives lately… & then, last week I was challenged by a reader with a simple but profound question, along the same lines- & now I’d like to challenge all of you to answer it as well! After you read my answer – will you pray about it?? Put your answer in the comments of this post – if you blog, add it to your blog & include your link in your comment here! Let’s Sharpen Up together – that’s why God gave us the amazing gift of fellowship!

 

The Challenge:

“Tell me – if you were to put into 20 words your primary revelation about God from the last 2 years, what would you write??” -Fellow Blogger: Graeme in Australia – mybroom

 

The Answer:

“Through His power – I stand firm, command the storms and make peace. His promises ARE fulfilled – HE does the impossible.”

 

The Scripture:

“23 Those who go down to the sea in ships,
Who do business on great waters,
24 They see the works of the Lord,
And His wonders in the deep.
25 For He commands and raises the stormy wind,
Which lifts up the waves of the sea.
26 They mount up to the heavens,
They go down again to the depths;
Their soul melts because of trouble.
27 They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man,
And are at their wits’ end.
28 Then they cry out to the Lord in their trouble,
And He brings them out of their distresses.
29 He calms the storm,
So that its waves are still.
30 Then they are glad because they are quiet;
So He guides them to their desired haven.
31 Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness,
And for His wonderful works to the children of men!
32 Let them exalt Him also in the assembly of the people,
And praise Him in the company of the elders.”

-Psalm 107:23-32

 

I’m so glad I took a few days to pray this through. I went back to the beginning of this blog (October 2010). We weren’t yet half way through our fundraising for this big move. There was stress & health issues with our extended families. Our jobs were not in a good place. Our house was losing value (ok, so that one is still a problem). Our lives were turned upside down in a state of ‘unsettled’… The progress from then until today is really astounding. Many of these things were pieced together as we grew during the different storms. Our Father placed people & moments in the storm that helped us both physically & spiritually. What seemed to be delayed promises are all revealed & healed now. God has restored years & relationships that were stolen by the locusts… He has revived our family, even through our children’s prayers – & our finances. He raised all of our funds in HIS perfect timing & moved us to Hong Kong last December without a hitch! As if that weren’t enough, He’s even blessed us beyond measure with our new friendships & opportunities to serve our neighbors, while teaching us even more & showing us how to love like He loves – in creative new ways since we’ve arrived! What an amazing God we serve… What a loving Father we have! It’s my daily prayer to know Him more & serve Him well each day that I breathe… There are still more dreams in our hearts, still more storms brewing around us & yet… even more promises that God has made to us, we STAND on those & are secure in the knowledge that when we TRUST in the Creator, especially when the waiting is hardest, all creation will bow at His feet & His will is accomplished! So to this storm outside & to any within, we say – Be Still & Know that our Father is YAHWEH! We will not fear, instead, we will go into the field & gather the harvest – for it is ready & so are we!

We hope you are inspired by what God is teaching us, we hope you’ll ask the Holy Spirit to show you how He’s teaching you… Don’t forget to share your answers with us!!! You can even share this with your friends & see if they will answer too! We’re praying for you & we’re excited to see what God is doing in each of your lives!!!

“He who observes the wind and waits for all conditions to be favorable will not sow, and he who regards the clouds will not reap.” -Ecclesiastes 11:4

 

-JK

of Two hearts… {a call to prayer}

Ever heard the phrase “I’m of two minds” ? Well, this week I’ve found it hard to post because I am of two hearts… Both a grieving sorrow & a jubilant joy are indwelling my spirit these days. It is such a mixture of emotion, filling my mind with prayers that somehow don’t really seem to conflict at all, but are still so opposite in nature that I simply can not wrap my understanding around it. God’s ways truly are so much higher than ours…

I’m in such a quandary as to what to say. Please forgive my quiet blog this week. I’m not sure when I will have my head returned to me. Or maybe I won’t. Some things do really change us & we never are the same again. I just wouldn’t have guessed it could be done by two events in the lives of two other families, living in two other countries… having absolutely nothing in common, except that both stories involve someone’s treasured son & I know someone in both families. In my confusion of heart & mind, all I have left to say is… will you please pray with me for both these families of these precious, beloved sons???

First the Joyful Heart: Mark & I are blessed to consider the Mickschl our family! We have shared on this blog about Mark & Hansina’s multiple adoption journeys. Their most recent leap of faith has been nothing short of a miracle story written by God & played out before our very eyes. On Monday, they left the orphanage with their newest son Andrew Mark Mickschl, a 16 year old young man from Ukraine. He and his dad Mark are hoping to get a flight home to the US this coming Saturday. It fills us with such grateful peace to know that Andrew is safe now & will learn to know the love of family, Jesus & a place to call home. Indescribably Joy flows through me when I consider the new beginning God has given to Andrew… & the new-found completeness He has brought to our friends lives with bringing their son home! It overwhelms me, the Father’s goodness & grace, bringing Andrew from the brink of evil & child-trafficking – into a loving & Spirit Filled family… forever! – You can follow their amazing God directed journey home from Ukraine right here: To Love Another

Second the Heart of Grief: Another family we know, Clint & Alina Snuggs, are walking through the Valley of the Shadow of Death with their dear cousin Amanda this week. Amanda’ s 4 year old son Caleb was in a horrible car accident on June 24th. After spending a week in the PICU, there was nothing more the Dr’s could do. Sweet little Caleb went to be with Jesus… Today, Amanda made the amazingly brave choice to give the gift of life to someone else’s baby. Caleb’s life was made even more meaningful because his mom was able to donate his organs… My heart just breaks for Amanda. I cannot explain the heaviness I have felt this week as I have prayed with my friends, crying out to Jesus for Caleb’s life to be spared & now for Amanda’s heart to heal. It overtakes my soul, with three beloved sons of my own, I cannot imagine her pain. And yet I KNOW our Father can & will heal her heart & bring her to a place of peace… I KNOW this to be true & this is my prayer for Amanda…

Will your family join ours in praying for these families? Let them know with your comments here.

Please share so that others will pray with you!