Sunday, December 04, 2016

Lives Changed Forever

This past October the boys and I traveled to North Carolina to see Maureen! We were so very excited ... it had been a year since we last saw her. She was speaking on behalf of Mercy House. I would also meet Kristen Welch... from We are THAT family! Kristen is the founder of the Mercy House. Oh, and did I say how beautiful North Carolina is in October?

This is Kristen, Wesley, Maureen, Mazzy and Wyatt

Ladies shopping the Mercy House table. 

This was our 3rd time seeing Maureen in the states. We talk a lot by messenger and facebook. It is always great to see her. We are family. 

Maureen and Mazzy

Maureen and Kristen spoke about Mercy House and told Lilian's story.Lilian lived in the slum with her aunt... when her aunt would leave to find work the men in the slum would have their way with Lilian... passing her around. God is the God who turns ashes into beauty and that is what He did with Lilian. Maureen brought Hope to Lilian and Mercy House became Lilian's new home. Since that time Lilian has received prenatal care, shelter, food, schooling, life skills, delivered a beautiful baby boy and accepted Jesus into her life.  Now Lilian is mentoring the new girls coming to Mercy House. 

The Stackabilities bracelets above are made by the Give Hope women. Fair Trade Friday is part of Mercy House and they employ women around the world with jobs to get them off the streets and teach them a way to care for their children.  I am a member of the Fair Trade Friday Bracelet club. Each month I receive a bracelet from one of these artisans from around our world. I love them! I am giving lots as Christmas gifts. 

Mazzy was shy at first but warmed up to us pretty quick. I loved visiting with Maureen and him. I loved meeting Kristen. She is so real and down to earth....  

Mercy House, Maureen and Kristen (and lots more staff) are changing lives every day. Maureen was a Compassion sponsored child and she will tell you how it changed her life. Right now Mercy House is home to around 30 young pregnant girls. If you would like to shop Mercy House or give ....   please click here. If you want to learn more about Mercy House click here.  

Thanks for letting me share.

Sponsor a child today!
Grace~ Teena

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Thanksgiving and my Girl.

Thanksgiving is just over a week away ....   I am excited as Lysa will be home. Her first time home since leaving for college in August. We have seen her several times when we visited her at her college but this will be her first time home! Lots of talks and hugs.....   we will watch the Gilmore Girls Reunion....  we will do our Black Friday thing but we do not buy much. We just go out in the middle of the night!  It is something we started several years ago and look forward to it so much.

Each year we try to shop at Fair Trade places so that our gifts give back.  Here are a few that we trust and love.

Mercy House Global  (this is where Maureen is.)

Compassion International Gift Catalog

Rapha House   (releasing girls in India from slavery)

I know there are others but this is just a few.

What are your plans for Thanksgiving?  Will you be with family?  I pray that your time with your loved ones is wonderful and memories are made. I would love to hear from you. Not sure who all still stops by but if you do ... thank you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Grace~ Teena
Sponsor a child today!

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

Through it All.... All is Grace. Through Our Brokenness....

Even when we can not understand and life seems to throw us into the pit....  God is there. When life gives us struggles... and hardships God is with us. He never leaves us. I am so grateful for that.

God continues to show me over and over that He is right here with me.  He continues to work His miracles and allow me to be a part of them. He continues to pour His daily grace on me and I am so very thankful.

I have shared before how I started counting my gifts in 2007. I read Ann Voskamp's book "One Thousand Gifts" in 2011 I believe and .... by counting it changed the way I see life. I started looking for the good.... beauty.... even in the small....  and then in the hard.   Almost 10 yrs since I started my thankful gifts. I am around 6000. I haven't made it to 10,000 yet. I will....  I will never stop. Ann shared just counting three a day will give you 1000 a year. I love to look back through the years at all my gifts.

Ann's new book "The Broken Way" was released last week. Oh how God is showing me so very much.

So....  by saying that it is hard to come here and share my struggles. Every time I think I will ....   the words will not come.  I have shared some things.

As my daughter was on the other side of the world....  her words to these children were "your circumstances do not define you."  Those words have helped me so much through the years. I remember hearing Maureen say that too. Maureen says it over and over to the children in the slum, to the girls at the Mercy House.

I find myself saying those words to myself....  "your circumstances do not define you."

My trust is in God and God alone. All for His glory.  Through the hard ...

May the JOY of the Lord be yours!

Friday, September 09, 2016

A Little Boy Named Miquel.

It's been 5 months since Lysa left for the Philippines. I have shared here about her trip with a few other posts but I want to share with you another God story.

Lysa traveled to the Philippines to visit her sponsored child, stay with Joy (a friend of her's) and visit some other friends she met in 2009-2010 when they came to the U.S.

While she was there she helped Joy with a conference that Joy was assisting with.... this was not a Compassion Event. Joy does not work with Compassion. Lots of people attended and she met several people.
 These two girls attended the weekend conference and Lysa loved getting to know them and hearing their stories.  Lysa and I have talked about how a lot of times you want to be a blessing to others but you end up being the one blessed!

During the conference Lysa saw this little boy and when  he saw her .... he would smile and hide. He would wait a few seconds and peek to see if she was looking! This went on for sometime.  Then Lysa went over to him and they started playing with his paper airplane. 
His name is Miquel and he walks a bit different because his legs are weak. 

Lysa and Miquel played for hours ... flying that paper plane. They didn't speak the same language.... just the language of love. Every time Miquel would fly the plane Lysa would say "good job" and  then.... every time Lysa flew the plane... Miquel would say "good job."

Later that evening.....   someone told Lysa that Miquel was a Compassion sponsored child. She was so surprised. She began talking to his mom and she confirmed that he was indeed a Compassion sponsored child. She then told Lysa....   something so sad...   "He has never received a letter from his sponsor."   Lysa told her how sorry she was and how she loves to write to her sponsored child. How she loves the relationship between her sponsored child and herself. The mother then went on to say that "Miquel prays every night to receive ONE letter."  Lysa told Miquel's mother she would start praying, along with them, that Miquel would receive a letter!

That next morning Lysa & I were able to talk on the phone. She told me all of this. Lysa begged me to call Compassion  and see if there was anyway she could start writing him ....  you know be Miquel's correspondant. I told her it was Sunday here but I would call first thing in the morning. She had his whole name and where he lived.

On Monday morning I called.

The man I spoke to was flippano. He looked Miquel up. He found him. What he said next....  made my heart burst.

He informed me that Miquel had been sponsored but never received a letter.  EVER.   He then said...

Miquel's sponsor recently stopped sponsoring him.....  would your daughter like to be his sponsor?

I couldn't believe it! You see... God was already ahead of us! Of course, Lysa would want to sponsor him! I did tell him to put him on my account and I would check with her and call him back.

I wasn't able to talk with her for most of the day but I finally reached her.

She was in shock! YES!! I want him! I reminded her that she already sponsored Jazzy and was also paying the sponsorship of Wyatt's sponsored child....   this would make three that she would be financially responsible for....     "I know, Mom....  but God will make a way.... Miquel is already mine!"  I knew that too.

God is faithful. Lysa not only met her sponsored child, Jazzy Rain.... she met Miquel! 

As we talked and talked and cried and cried.... the days after she came home...  Lysa would say...  "that I was there, saw Miquel, talked to his mother, found out he was sponsored and that he had never received a letter....  and then.... that I could sponsor him.... that is God! God connected the dots!"  He already knew.

Miquel and his mother's prayers were answered! God is the God of miracles.

I keep thinking about how surprised they will be when they open his FIRST letter and see this....

God is faithful. Thank you, Jesus for Miquel. What a gift. So honored to see Your glory.

Change a life... sponsor a child today!
Grace~ Teena