Monday, 21 January 2019

So Many New Things

I want to thank all of you for your prayers this week. We finished our 1st week with my new staff members & it was great. It was crazy full on too. I did not realize how many, meetings, emails, social media messages, creating ministry policies/other documents, weekly preparations are required & still attending the drop in centre when you are a ministry director. We now are opened 5 days a week & have 8 staff/volunteers coming & going. The awesome thing is 2 more people (a Thai & foreign) want to come as well. 

Managing a team of leaders is so very different than you being the leader with one other staff trying to do everything. All of the things the foundation said I needed, as the director to do in the past I could not do, but now with staff I can do. In the past I could only think/prepare for each day, now I can look & make plans for the future. I am so thankful for how God used the Arrow Leadership program to help prepare me for this change. 

I sent a message to my life coach last week saying that I need help navigating this new stage of life/ministry I am in. I need to create a life rhythm that is sustainable. 

As I was explaining to my son how things look now, still being at the centre. The kids still whenever they need anything yell "Met, Met!" Matt is very difficult for the kids to say so my name is Met. When they are hurt or something is wrong they still look to me, their grey haired father while at the centre. This will change in time as they start to trust the staff & volunteers. I am now able to be fully present & be the person watching things, making sure things are working/flowing & if something comes up can help solve any challenges or step in when needed. My son said that my relationship with the kids is changing like from a parent to a grandparent. I think he is right. 

Also I now have time to spend visiting the adults in the village. Having been around for over 4 years the kids parents & the other adults trust me with more personal things which is an honour. 

On another note the 8 year old boy came to the centre yesterday, had a smile on his face & seems to be doing well. We will continue to check up on his family so that they have what they need to transition without having a husband/father. Please continue to pray for them.

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Difficult Things

I would like to give everyone an update on the prayer request of one of our children's fathers passing away. 

When my staff & I went into the community on Sunday afternoon & with my male Thai volunteer found out that the boys father passed away over the Christmas & New Years break when we were closed. We asked an influential lady in the community how we could honour the father & his family the he left behind. Her response was to remain closed for 1 extra week as the remaining family continues to morn & a food basket with everyday cooking items & laundry detergent. The great thing was when we saw the 8 year old boy with his 2 year old brother & mother they came strait for us. The 2 year old boy wanted me to hold him in my arms & the mother asked if we could pray for them on the street where we met. 

We will continue to meet with them outside of the centre being opened to ensure their basic needs are being met. The awesome thing is that a donation came in from the US to fund the 8 year old boy to go to a new school. He will start at this new school when the new Thai school year begins in April.

When this boy (now 8 years old) 1st attended the centre over 3 years ago he could not speak, was really angry, would not listen to anyone & would have to be sent home everyday we were opened for hitting the other kids. This past year we noticed a real change in him. He would run to meet me as I was walking to the centre, he would be the 1st child to come in when we opened the doors, he always came with a smile, he started speaking to us, became respectful of the other children & us the leaders. It's been a total change

Sunday, 16 December 2018

Christmas Party!

Please pray for our drop in centre Christmas party on today. We are expecting 30 kids with their families & friends. Here are the things we will be giving them in their Christmas bags. I am excited to be giving the new gospel of John that has been translated into everyday street languange for the kids & their caregivers to read.

Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Smile in the Challenge

Well, started the day with our car not starting again. This is the 2nd shop because the 1st one did not fix it, but kept charging me more & more back in August. It finally worked then 1 month ago it started again. The usual is it's fixed for 4 days then stops again. Got on my bicycle to cycle to my office to meet my guys for mens morning prayer. Came home turned the key, nothing, 2nd time started. 

Drove to the shop & when I got out smiled & told the staff that it did not start this morning. 4 mechanics came over to the car smiling (because I was smiling) in disbelief. The 4 of them started going through everything that could be an issue & what they had already done. I popped the trunk to get my foldable bicycle out so I could cycle home. 

Also this week as I was going to print our newsletters to mail, my printer stopped working. The printer technician said to repair it would be $150.

I used to get so angry, but I have realized that it doesn't fix the broken things. I need to do what I can & trust God for the rest. I am not determined by my circumstances. It does get seriously frustrating, but have counted my blessings. We are all relatively healthy, give or take a cold once a year. We have my old beater '94 carola to get around & my trusty bicycle. There is so many things that could be much worse. 

"Our fight is not against people on earth but against the rulers and authorities and the powers of this world’s darkness, against the spiritual powers of evil in the heavenly world." Ephesians 6:12 NCV

Wednesday, 14 November 2018

Take Time

I am hand writing everyone's mailing address for our current newsletter. As I am writing your addresses good memories start coming of each of you & as I end writing your addresses pray for all of you.

Yes, I realize that this is very inefficient & there are apps/software I could use to make addressing envelopes faster. However, God has been showing me that real relationships & personal connection with people is very inefficient. I am forced to slow down to invest in people.

It makes me think of Jesus & the 12 disciples described in the Matthew, Mark, Luke & John (the Bible). Jesus investing in those men was was probably the worst thing He could have done for His efficiency (3 years of ministry on earth). But, He knew people & that personally investing in them would change the world. Please do not forget people during your day.

Thank-you all for your prayers & investing in us.

Friday, 9 November 2018

Enjoy what God has for you

I had a plan for the day. Had a morning meeting cut short because our car would not start. Came home called the auto shop. They came got our car started. Packed my foldable bicycle in the back & drove to the auto shop with a bad starter. To fix the starter they said it would take a day. So I left to stop at my favourite noodle shop for some lunch, pork noodles, fried pork skin, water & a coffee for $3. Then cycled to the airport to get cash to pay a friend's rent while they are out of country. Closed until 1pm, the sign said then cycled to immigration & the officers were at "lunch break." Cycled back to the airport, found a picnic table in the garden area & am just sitting here enjoying the warmth. Time is moving so slow, am watching the planes arrive & depart. Had a power nap for 20 minutes & have been praying for people as I wait. 

I have bronchitis & my doctor to me to rest, but had so much to still do. My plans have been placed on hold for 2 hours & I am enjoying the forced rest that God knew I needed, but at 1st was not willing to take. Embracing the forced change of plans & expectations is a good thing. Receiving what God has for you allows life to be much better.

 "People may make plans in their minds, but the Lord decides what they will do." Proverbs 16:9 NCV