Today was our Christmas day for my family because we will be heading to Grandma's tomorrow. Please pray for us as we travel into an area that has about 12-15 inches of snow even after 3 days of melting. I have been so busy since I got home trying to get ready for Christmas and packing to go home that I have not had time to write details about my trip. As soon as I came home and my feet hit the floor I have been going and going and going.
I am happy to say that we sent 49 kids to school instead of 36. It was amazing and as soon as I can get my pictures ready I will post them. Most of these kids had never even wrote in a car before. It was so special. The kids faces were filled with excitement and the mothers eyes filled with tears. It was one of the most rewarding moments for me. The comments from the parents made me cry often but the hugs from the kids took that sorrow away and turn it into joy. It was truly an amazing site to see.
The families in Cebieta are eating their new peppers and tomatoes and other vegetables was we speak some will be coming in this week and next. They were so happy to see the fruits of their labor. We had a celebration with them and they gave me a "key" to the city and made me an official "Nicaraguan" . It was very special to see them excited but the cheers did not come from the excitement of seeing their gardens it came from the distribution of the bibles. I was able to give them 35 bibles with a notebook and 2 pens and a gallon size baggie to protect them if it rained. During the celebration the Pastor was preaching and the families were finding the scriptures like pros. It was a site to see also. Each week the local church brings them 15 minutes into town in the back of a truck for services and every Monday they have bible study under the big tree. This is what my time and efforts is all about. They are only 35 people but they will soon be 350 or 3,000, just because people care enough to invest in their future.
We also showed the movie Facing the Giants to over 100 teenagers and many adults. It was a great night also because we were able to bring all the teens from Cebieta and another community to the movie. Most of them had never even seen a TV before much less a large movie with Coke and donuts. It was such a blessing to see their faces as the big screen came on. They will never forget that night.
There were 4 people that night accept the Lord as their savior. Many wanted to but we all could tell it was the temptations of upcoming parties and peer pressure that keep them back. It was obvious there were several people who were causing distractions in the crowd. I spoke that night and I can honestly say I have no idea what I said. The entire night before I prayed and prayed and God gave me nothing. When I took the mic to speak I prayed again and God said some amazing things from me. I was told later that things I said moved their hearts and helped them to see my heart in a very different way. I hope it opens the door for many other times for them to see the real Angie. The one that loves them.
I got to go to the orphanage and bless all the kids there. 5 of my girls from the House of Rose live there and it was such a blessing to see them as all have grown so much. I took presents for everyone to make sure they all knew they were special also. There are many teenagers that live there and have no family at all so getting gifts from someone was a real treat.
I also saw my girls Carmen and Isamar and Karen. All are doing well and growing like weeds. All are learning to function in their new homes as it as been an entire year already since they left the orphanage. It gets harder and harder for me to see my girls. I love them so much but I am not sure if I can continue seeing them. Their focus seems to be more on what I am giving them than who I am. It's sad but it's Nicaragua. We will see. My heart can only take so much.
Today was a huge blessing also. My church feed 100+ people from the community who received food assistance each week from our church. I had the privilege of serving them plates of turkey and dressing with all the fix'ns and give them a box of food as they left. It caused me to miss Nicaragua real bad.
I challenge each of you this season no matter what your situation is to truly take a look at the blessings God has given you. Unless you are homeless right now and on the streets you are a very BLESSED individual. This time of the year the world pushes in our heads that we have to have certain things in order to be happy and have a great Christmas. I ask you to focus on what you already have not what you don't have.
God gave his son to us as a FREE gift. That same son lived and walked on this earth just like us but I bet there is no where in the bible you can find a word about him wishing he had anything. It is real easy to get depressed and sad about what we don't have, I know, I have done it and felt that sadness many many times in my life and I also know it is real easy to say what I am saying if you are not in need. I remember being encouraged by someone once and I knew for sure she had everything her kids had asked for under her tree and the entire time I was thinking YOU HAVE NO IDEA LADY... But I do.. I know exactly what that feels like.
My challenge to you is to look around you and ask is there anybody in my life that needs Jesus this season, is there anyone who needs to be encouraged. Find them and make a difference this Christmas on behalf of Jesus. Teach your kids to give to others who have nothing. Invite a neighbor over for dinner or take them a pie. DO SOMETHING to show them Jesus this season, it will change your life and theirs.
Since this is the end of the year I want to make sure each of you know how thankful I am for the support you have given me this year. It has been a very amazing and difficult year all at the same time. Without your support, love and prayers this ministry would be nothing, instead together we illustrate the POWER OF ONE.
Merry Christmas to everyone and May your 2010 be the beginning of great things in your life.
God Bless all of you, Dios le bendiga,
Angie, Terry, Jordon, Logan and Jacob