May 16, 2014

Uganda Facts

Uganda is located near the centre of the continent of Africa.
Uganda has no borders on oceans.
Uganda has one of the best climates in the world, with two rainy seasons and two dry seasons.
The population of Uganda is over 27 million people, most of whom are under the age of 15.
The population growth rate is 3.4% which is one of the highest in the world.
At this rate, by the year 2025, the population of Uganda will have doubled to at least 54 million people.
The number of orphaned children in Uganda is presently 2.3 million.
This large number of orphans is due to the high death rate of young couples dying from HIV/AIDS.
More facts about Uganda

The Circle in Red indicates the Location of Uganda in Africa.

Some 86% of the population in Uganda live in rural areas and earn their living from subsistence agriculture. Yet despite Uganda's fertile soil, favourable weather and growing economy, over half the population do not have sufficient access to food and live in abject poverty.
Farms average 1.3 hectares, which is not enough to support cattle, so many farmers keep goats instead. However, local breeds have only short periods for producing milk and have a low milk yield, so they don’t provide much sustenance for households.
The African country of Ethiopia enjoys the distinction of being the continent’s oldest independent country. The country could have also laid claim to the distinction of never being colonized if it wasn’t for Mussolini, who reigned over the country for a brief period of five years. Apart from being known for the above mentioned facts, Ethiopia is also known for its prolonged civil conflicts, droughts and famines. The country is also putting up with an issue in the form of a border war with neighboring Eritrea. Ethiopia is the second-most populous country in the continent of Africa. In terms of geographical area occupied (1,100,000 square kilometers), it is the tenth largest country in Africa. Ethiopia is surrounded by Sudan in the west, Somalia in the east, Kenya in the South and a hostile Eritrea in the north. The country, compared to its ‘peers’, is relatively old and can trace its roots back to the 10th century BC. It, in fact, is one of the oldest countries in the world. Read on to know more about this strong-willed African country, Ethiopia.

Interesting & Fun Facts About Ethiopia:
The country of Ethiopia is located west of Somalia, in Eastern Africa. The country, in size, is almost twice as big as the state of Texas.
Ethiopia experiences a tropical weather, with changes in weather depending on the topography of a particular location in the country.
The Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia is the official name of the country of Ethiopia. Addis Abba is the Capital of Ethiopia.
The official monetary unit of Ethiopia is known as the Birr. A single Birr is valued at a hundred cents.
Oromo, Tigrinya, Somali, and Amharic are the languages spoken all over Ethiopia.
Almost half of the Ethiopian population is believed to be Christian. Ethiopia was the first country to declare Christianity as its national religion and also the first country to mint coins with a Cross on them.
Ethiopia’s chief exports include sugarcane, beeswax, coffee, hides, and oilseeds.
After Christianity, the other major religion in Ethiopia is Islam. So that makes Christianity and Islam as the country’s two main religions.
Ethiopia is one of Africa’s faster growing non-oil economies and thrives on the success of its agriculture industry. The agriculture industry, however, is often dented by frequent droughts.
Meles Zenawi is the Prime Minister of Ethiopia. He owes his loyalties to the People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front and won the May 2010 elections to become the Prime Minister. This is Meles Zenawi’s fourth term in office.
Ethiopia, in the past, for many years was headed only by female rulers. A legend has it that even Alexander the Great stopped at the borders of Ethiopia because he did not want to risk being defeated by a woman.
Ethiopia has a unique way of counting the hours of the day, and even functions within the limits of a thirteen-month calendar.
The town of Dallol in Ethiopia has the world's highest average annual temperature of 34 °C.
The Mursi tribe, one of the fiercest tribes in Africa calls Ethiopia its home. The women of the tribe are famous for wearing lip plates. This was done to appear less attractive to slave traders, who were known to sell them in Western countries!

Read more:

Ethiopia is faced with extremely high poverty rates - almost half of the population live on less than 50 cents a day, and only 28% of rural households have access to clean water. Women in rural communities in Ethiopia are particularly disadvantaged. They suffer from few economic opportunities, low literacy levels and poor access to public services such as healthcare.
In Ethiopia 80% of the population derive their income from small scale agricultural and pastoral production. Drought and a lack of investment in training and equipment for farmers make it difficult to earn a living from agriculture.
Around 10 million people are at risk of starvation, however simple and practical support can transform the lives of poor farmers and herders.

Fast Facts About Ethiopia
Population: 80,713,000
Capital: Addis Ababa
Area: 437,600 square miles
Language: Amharic, Tigrinya, Orominga, Guaraginga,
Somali, Arabic
Religion: Christian 60.8%, Muslim 32.8%,
traditional 4.6%, other 1.8%
Currency: Birr
Life Expectancy: 53
GNI per Capita: $280
Percentage of Population Living on Less than $1.25/day: 39
Literacy Percent: 50
Orphaned Children: 5,000,000
Physicians per 100, 000 people: 3

CIA—The World Factbook
National Geographic Atlas of the World
WHO Human Resources for Health
UNICEF—State of the World’s Children, 2010

Interesting Facts about Ethiopia – Trivia on the Firsts and the Greatest

Ethiopia is a country that is truly fascinating. Facts about Ethiopia or just mere trivia on the country are a pleasure and sometimes even amazing to read about. Who knew?
- Ethiopia is the only African country with its own alphabet.
- Ethiopia is the only country in the world with 13 months.
- In Ethiopia time is counted on the opposite side of the clock: 6 o’clock is said to be 12 o’clock, and at 16:00 Ethiopians say it is ’10 o’clock’.
- Ethiopia is one of only two countries in the world that have never been occupied. (The other one is Russia, in case you are asked). It managed to stay free by defeating the Italians … twice!
- Although Ethiopia was the first African state to join the League of Nations, it soon became apparent that ‘collective security’ would not be given to an African nation even after atrocities of ethnic cleansing and mass murders were evident after Italy invaded – everyone turned a blind eye and a deaf ear.
- Ethiopia was the birthplace of Pan-Africanism. The belief that Africa should unite and be the master of its own destiny was hailed by Emperor Hailesellasie I. It eventually led to the birth of the African Union of today.
- The hydroelectric dam that was built on the Tekeze River and was inaugurated in November 2009 is Africa’s tallest arch dam standing at 188 meters. Gilgel Gibe IV a dam that will be operational sometime in 2012/13 will be the tallest dam on the continent at 200+ meters.
- Ethiopia and Ethiopians are mentioned in many ancient books. The Bible is one of them. Ethiopia or Ethiopians are mentioned around 40 times in it. It is one of the few countries that are mentioned in both the Bible and the Koran. It is a country where the indigenous people are Christians, Muslims and Jews live together. It was the first country where Muslim prayers were held out of Arabia. Incidentally the first Muslim calls to prayer were done by an Ethiopian. And the first mosque to be built outside of Arabia was the Al Nejashi mosque in northern Ethiopia. When Mohammed and his followers were persecuted, they found solace in Ethiopia.

An Image from the Garima Gospels
- The very first and oldest illustrated book on Christianity is found in Ethiopia. This is in the form of a gospel that was written in 494 AD, colors and bindings still intact and was discovered in a monastery – ‘The Garima Gospels’. Abba Garima was a monk that arrived in Ethiopia from Constantinople in the fifth century; legend has it that he copied it in one day.
- Ethiopia has a long history of war, in Homer’s ‘The Iliad’ in the Trojan War, Memnon was an Ethiopian king. Ethiopia and Ethiopians are also mentioned in his other book ‘Odyssey’. The ancient Greek love for the Ethiopians does not end there; another Ethiopian is in Greek astronomy too. According to legend, Cassiopeia was the queen and consort of King Cepheus in Ethiopia. And long story short, after her death, Cassiopeia was immortalized as a star by Poseidon.
- The name ‘Candace’ is actually the name given to the line of Ethiopian Queens that ruled in ancient times.
- Ethiopia and Ethiopians are usually mentioned with the words ‘athlete’ and ‘athletics’. The first African to win a gold medal in the Olympics was Abebe Bikila in the 1960 Summer Olympic in Rome; he wan the marathon with a record time of 2:15:16.2 – an even amazing thing was the fact that he ran the whole race barefooted. In the next Olympics held in Tokyo in 1964, Abebe Bikila won the marathon with a world record time of 2:12:11:2.4. Making him the first athlete, and as of yet the only African, in history to win the marathon twice in back to back Olympics. As of date, the marathon world record holder is another amazing Ethiopian athlete, Haile Gebreselasie. He holds the record at 2:03:59.
- Ethiopia is the home of mankind. While the most famous ancestors of mankind are Lucy and Selam, archeological digs have and will continue to show that it was the valleys of Ethiopia that man came out of.
- Ethiopia is the homeland of coffee; it was discovered by a shepherd named Kaldi who noticed his goats prancing about restlessly after eating the leaves of the coffee plant. It is thought the word coffee was borrowed from the southern Ethiopian lands of Kaffa.
- The Mountain Nyala and the Walia Ibex are the two most famous animals that are endemic to Ethiopia. The others are the Semien Red Fox, The Chelada Baboon, Menilik’s Bushback, Wattled Ibis, Blue-winged Goose, Harwood’s Francolin, Rouget’s Rail, Spot-breasted Lapwing, White-collared Pigeon, Yellow-fronted Parrot, Black-winged Lovebird and Prince Ruspoli’s Turaco. In January, 2011 a new member was added to the ‘Endemic Ethiopian’ list – The African Wolf.
- Addis Ababa is the highest city in Africa. And many tourists mistakenly think that just because it is in Africa it is a hot place to be. It is amusing to see their reactions to the cold when they get off the plane at Bole International Airport as they shiver in Bermuda shorts and Hawaii shirts. The city was founded by Emperor Menilik II on the Entoto Mountain.
- The Danakil Depression (also known as the Afar Depression or the Afar Triangle) found in North Eastern Ethiopia is the year-round hottest place anywhere on earth.
- Amazingly, Ethiopians have a very impressive history when it comes to flying. The first African woman to fly was Wro. Assegedech Assefa. There is an argument that if it had not been for the Italian invasion in 1936, Wro. Mulumebet Emeru would have been the first licensed African to fly, but that she is the first to fly – the jury is still out on that one. The only jet fighter air-to-air shoot down by a female pilot is credited to Ethiopian Air Force Captain Aster Tolossa, who shot down her Ukrainian trainer who was flying for the Eritreans.
- The first car to reach Ethiopia was Emperor Menilik’s car (plate number D3130), in 1907. He was the first African Emperor, if not plain African, to actually drive a car.

This list will be added on as information is available. Ethiopia is a country with over 3,000 years of history. Any suggestions or additions are very welcome.

Sep 3, 2013

Prayers from the broken hearted

Yesterday I was really suffering from "the orphan mentality" and washing the dishes preparing to leave. I told the Lord that sometimes it still really grieves me that I don't have family, that my children lack grandparents that care and are involved. I shared how I'm saddened that the family I do have finds me useless unless I'm useful to them, namely helping them financially which I can't / won't do as it would only enable substance abuse. I told Him how it hurt my heart when my son was sick no blood relative came to pray, support or help in any way. I remember thinking if he passed away they wouldn't have known unless they ran into us on the street and realized we were minus a child. It's painful that while we've been contacted for money or to be used as storage, or transportation my baby turns 1 soon, and they have never asked to see her, her name, gender, age or know the joy she brings to our family. I told Him also how it hurts constantly wondering if they are off the streets, safe, overdosed or seriously hurt, how I'm weary of praying for the breaking of strongholds of sin, addiction and dysfunction only to hear of them sinking further and deeper into chaos and depravity. I dried my hands off, grabbed my purse and walked outside to where my husband and children were waiting in the van when I saw them speaking to the very person who raised me (during the times I wasn't in fostercare or living with friends) that I was just praying about! They are doing worse than ever and the saddest was hearing how the children are doing. I will be making some calls today. I did get to pray with them that Our Heavenly Father would restore the years the locusts have eaten and make something good to come from this situation. Still I'm grieved. Still I pray. While they live there is always hope. Praying those I care about would choose life both the physical and eternal. 2 Peter 3:9 "The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance."
" Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me." Psalm 27:10 "Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life." Proverbs 13:12 "But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation." Psalm 13:5 "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love." 1 Corinthians 13:13

Jan 27, 2013

May each be set free This article really hit close to home. It's heartbreaking. I have family members like these folks. I've prayed for YEARS that they'd turn things around, find Christ, find purpose. As the years fly by, I get less hopeful. It is incredibly painful to see them while driving down the street on my way to a homeschool classes or church. I'd like to move away from the constant reminder of what I come from. At times I feel like "the one who escaped" because I'm so different and never made these choices. I also feel guilt because I can't help them, even though I know they don't really want help or to get better. It's haunts me to think that one day I may get the devastating phone call that they've succumbed from the effects of their lifestyle. (If I'm even lucky enough to get a phone call, maybe it'll be in the paper or I maybe I won't ever know, I'll just stop hearing from them, stop seeing them around) Lord please rescue them from themselves, from the snare of the evil one, from the pit they've dug for themselves. Pray for people like these. Each one is more than a statistic. It's a real person made in the image of Christ, with a purpose. Some are so hurt and broken they choose not to walk in it. Each addict, each person trapped in the street lifestyle is someones mother or father, (how many children wait expectantly for their parents to come home to them, to choose them over the lifestyle. Milestones are missed and parental rights are terminated) Each addict was some hopeful parent's daughter or son, someone's sister or brother. May each be set free and restored in Jesus mighty name.

Jan 19, 2013

A Spirit of Fear

Can I share something really personal here? Normally I'm confident. I beam with joy of being a success story of a life radically changed by God. My spirit is filled with the vision God gave me and I revel in His goodness and His purposes for my family. ;-) Lately however, I've noticed I've become a little less bold, more timid, depressed even. I'd been having moments where I think about the HUGE responsibility of raising all these precious little ones to walk in righteousness and truth and to be godly nation shaking world changers, and the task seems daunting. I wonder what the heck God was THINKING when He gave these children to ME (of all people) to raise. Sometimes, I remember what I come from and I feel the anxiety spread through me. My parents were drug addict criminals. My husband and I are the only normal stable married couple in our family. All of my life I've had to seek out mentors, not family members if I wanted to learn the healthy way of relating to others or handling life's challenges. I am a 2nd generation foster kid, I come from a LONG line of lawless, depraved, godless individuals who often shirk the responsibility of raising their own children. Occasionally I get sort of panicky and plagued by fears wondering if maybe, just maybe I'm toiling in vain. Can anything good come out of our family tree, I wonder? Sometimes I see family members homeless on the streets from bad decisions and I am flooded with grief, fear, discouragement and shame. I have family members who would love to see me and my children fail because that would somehow affirm to them, that I shouldn't have bothered to forge a new path to begin with. I remind them that "As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord" so we raise our children differently. I have to actively quote God's word that says "God has not given me a "spirit" of fear but of LOVE, POWER and a sound mind.(2 Timothy 1:7) I reason that if He could ransom, rescue and redeem ME (raised by addicts and foster care and those in bondage to sin) than He can do quite well with my children who are well loved and come from a good home. I'm reminded not to give even the tiniest of footholds to the enemy who would love to see my hard work undone and for me to view myself lower than dirt, paralyzed by fear. I begin to feel worthless and embarrassed of my upbringing. Then the Lord tells me "BEHOLD I am doing a NEW thing! Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert."( Isaiah 43:19) He reminds me that "we are more than conquerors through him that loved us."(Romans 8:37)The NLT states it as "No, despite ALL these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us." Isn't that encouraging. Maybe you don't come from as extreme of an upbringing as I do, but no matter what your situation, there is never a reason to trudge along life's journey, with a defeated spirit. Victory is ours through Christ. His Word exhorts me to "Abide in Him and I will bear much fruit."(John 15:1:8) Also to "Take every thought captive" ( 2 Cor 10:5" ) so that He can "quench ALL the fiery darts of the wicked." ( Ephesians 6:16) In my deepest pits of discouragement He declares that "He has REDEEMED me, He has called me by name and I am HIS." (Isaiah 43:1) When I feel hopeless, inadequate and like a failure, and that is often as of late, He REJOICES over me with singing! (Zeph 3:17) He whispers to me that Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee to myself. (Jer 31:3) I am blessed and encouraged that whatever the future holds, I and my children are secure in His love, care and protection. Amen

Jul 12, 2012

Ethiopia Trip 2011/Fundraising, prepping and vaccines

The anniversary of my first mission trip is almost here. Because I saved many posts in drafts and never got around to sharing, this whole week will be used to share every day that I was in Ethiopia on the same coinciding date. Brittany and I spent days and months fundraising, praying, seeking the Lord. At times, I wondered if this was truly God's will. At those times He'd give confirmations along the way, a note of encouragement, a verse or a donation. I couldn't believe everything was falling into place. What amazed me the most is those that provided to get me there. Surprisingly, it seems those with the least amount of money gave the most to help me help orphans, my dream. I couldn't believe the Lord was finally granting the desires of this mamas heart. I always thought I'd have to wait until old age to reach this life goal. That He would give me favor and answer so obviously was surprising for me! It was truly miraculous. There were times I worried, wondered and agonized over if all the money would come in. I'd pray pray pray and at the deadline of each necessary step the funding would come in at the last moment. Here we are on 7/12/11. At 6:14 pm we received confirmation that ALL the funding came in and I was set to LEAVE! JOY from Set apart for Him paid the balance off. You have no IDEA how big the Happy Dance was that we did! We jumped we hollered, we PRAISED the Lord!
Most people were really supportive. A very few people commented negatively. The bible is pretty clear on the responsibility of a Christian. James 1:27 "Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, [and] to keep himself unspotted from the world." It doesn't say wait until your children are older and out of the house. It doesn't say once you are retired or empty nesters. It says PURE RELIGION INVOLVES ORPHAN CARE! If you claim to be Christian, than you need to be helping the orphan and the poor. My leaving for 10 days wasn't me abandoning my children or forsaking my responsibilities at home. I have homeschooled my children since 3,these children have had no other caregiver their entire lives. I've only ever left them at the birth of a sibling. I've been a homemaker for over a decade now. The thing that irks me, those that commented do nothing, and I do mean nothing for orphans or the poor. Nor did donate even a pair of underwear, socks, coloring book or so much as a toothbrush, malaria net, or formula for children who have NOTHING. Funny how you can have encouragement of many, and it only takes a few negative comments to cause doubt. They did occasionally grip my heart with fear and doubt from the evil one. At one time I felt unworthy of His blessing. I worried if the plane would crash or a terrorist attack. At one point I wanted to leave a post saying if the Lord took me and you donated please don't feel bad, it's just the Lord's will. I also wanted to complete a small book of everything I've ever wanted to share with my children written down "in case." Finally the Lord told me to take every thought captive and that His plans for me were good. I resolved to not deal with fear mongers and nay sayers or give them anymore brainspace. Thankfully when I felt unsure or worried my husband would pray for me encourage me, tell me how blessed it would be and how excited he and the children were for me. My husband is amazing. If he would have showed even the slightest doubt I would have been to fearful to go. Instead he spurred me on. Love him. So many milestones were FANTASTIC, like getting my 1st passport. Here I am getting a couple vaccines. Here the kids are filming me get my vaccines!
Then off we went to celebrate the boys birthday a day early.

Jul 11, 2012

Party w/ a Purpose!

This day last year... my sweet friend Brenda helped us plan our Party with a Purpose. It was nice. We let people drop in anytime during the 4 hour gathering so people were stopping by throughout the day. Here we collected donations, did a short spiel on Ethiopia, fundraised a bit and made cards for the orphan kiddos. The kids had so much fun! I am bummed I didn't take more photos. Thank you to all who came out to lend support. We made Ethiopian foods so the children could experience the culture a bit and colored pictures. They got to see the Ethiopian alphabet. My favorite was when one of the kids wrote "Dear Orphans"... then thought about it for a moment and began again and wrote "Dear Friends" instead. Well played Josh! ;-) Later you will see photos of us giving these out to kids in Ethiopia! It was wonderful and we were blessed to share about Ethiopia, a beautiful, ancient fascinating culture and country.
Here we made ( or at least tried to make) Injera, ( the tortilla like bread) iab, the yummy yogurty type dish and dorowat. ( chicken in red pepper paste) Afterward we sorted the donations, started clean up and the kids had a question for us here... How could we say no? :-)

May 16, 2012

Illegal Products for Sale

Hey Friends, want to look at some "illegal products' for sale? Please, check this out, click on this link and tell me what you think!

Jan 10, 2012

Doing nothing is a mistake

Nobody made a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little. ~Edmund Burke

Dec 25, 2011

Share Christmas with one person

"Lord Christ, You have no body on earth but ours, No hands but ours, No feet but ours. Ours are the eyes through which your compassion must look out on the world. Ours are the feet by which you may still go about doing good. Ours are the hands with which You bless people now. Bless our minds and bodies. That we may be a blessing to others." St. Theresa of Avila

Today on Christmas, someone will wake up hungry, cold and hopeless. A widow will mourn the loss of her spouse, a parent the loss of a child, an orphan will wake up without family. It will be especially lonely today of all days. Somewhere in both the United States and in far away places like Africa, Ukraine, India, S. America and all over the world a child will wake up without anything under the tree and nothing in the house to eat. An international student spends another holiday alone in their dorm as all their classmates are home for Christmas. A refugee family wishes someone would talk to them. An elderly woman sits forgotten in a nursing home, a parents heart is rent in two not being able to provide for their child, a foster youth feels completely and utterly alone. A family is sleeping in their car, A child just died from lack of clean water, hunger or a preventable diseases. In the busyness of family celebrations, church services and holiday activities please stop for one moment and ask the Lord a question. "Who would you have me to love today?" "Whose life would you like to touch in a tangible way through me?" "How can I be your hands and feet in this moment?" I know Lord that faith without works is dead (James 2:14-26) so how can I use the resources, talents and time today in this moment to bless those who are broken and hurting?"

While celebrating with your family consider those without family. This could be the orphan who may have never known even a stitch kindness, love and a mothers touch. It could be a foster youth that has aged out of the system and like I often did, will spend Christmas and New Years alone feeling unloved, unwanted and purposeless. Invite them over. Thank you Brenda and Virgie for always having us over for the holidays. Thank you for being Jesus with skin on.

Google adoption photo listings and you'll see something truly heartbreaking. Foster youth that are 19, 20 and 21 years old still longing for a family, a place to belong on the holidays. Have you seen this?
I read about a 21 year old medical student that earned numerous awards for academic excellence. He was interning at a hospital, earned many scholarships, lived on his own but still strongly desired a family, enough to put himself on a national photolisting along with 132,000 other adoptable US foster youth. I used to pray someone would adopt him. He Isn't there anymore. I wonder, did he finally find a family or just get too old to be listed? Can you visit the senior citizen in the convalescent home that hasn't seen a visitor for quiet some time.

Have you ever encouraged a prisoner who is persecuted for his or her faith. Send a letter to officials on their behalf, Mail them a christmas card, a scripture, a note. Heb 13:3 Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them,
It could be that you invite international student to your home for dinners, activities etc like International Student INC. They come to America to learn about our culture but rarely leave their dorms to learn what life is like, unfortunately during the holiday many students go home leaving these students lonely and isolated. Meet new people from different cultures. What about the family/friend/coworker that moved here and has no family in which to share the usual traditions. Are they lonely away from their parents and siblings? Know any latchkey kids? What about the military family who moves from place to place. Or the military wife whose spouse is deployed?

As you are shopping and opening gifts think of the single mother who could barely put a roof over her child's head let alone purchase a gift or two for her child. Single fathers have it even worse. Sponsor a child, drop off a toy for an Angel Tree kid ( whose parent/s are in prison) Help foster child. Get a few friends a visit a group home. Go tell a kid to have hope, things will be better, that they have a purpose and were destined to do great things! That they have a FATHER who loves them and is the perfect parent when their earthly parents fall short. Tell them that "though their father and mother forsake them the Lord will take them up. " I'll never forget the postal workers who came by and dropped off gifts for us kids at the group home when I was a teen. I'll never forget the christmas as a 4 year child when my mother was arrested. The officers asked what I received for Christmas. One in particular appeared especially upset and disturbed when he found out I didn't receive anything at all. He went out and later presented me with a cabbage patch doll. I was terrified clinging to my mother who was at the time handcuffed. I don't know if he used his own money but it was a very compassionate gesture. No kindness is ever wasted.

You can give a micro loan through Opportunity, Hope International, World Vision, Five Talents. give medicine, animals, farming tools, school tuition a school uniform to a person who may not otherwise get help. Friends of mine recently got together and bought a gifts for a homeless child that I adore. Some even included gas and gift cards with words of encouragement for the mother. One mentioned that it was no big deal to her. They have passes at Disneyland and often spend that much on snacks and fast food alone. Can you forgo some small convenience to bless someones life, help an orphan find a home, alleviate a burden, meet a need? Touch a heart.

When decluttering to make way for your new items coming in your home consider the refugee who comes here with nothing. Even used items you may throw away would be a blessing to them. Many of us hoard all our many items when there are people in our own neighborhoods with nothing sleeping on the floor and without sheets silerware etc yes, here in the good ole USA. One friend provided childcare to help a refugee who was expected to find work but couldn't afford a sitter. Often they don't speak English and don't know how to even begin making a life for themselves. Many mothers feel isolated due to the language/culture barrier. They've experienced terrible persecution and personal tragedy. Love, a smile transcends language barriers.

Take a meal, mail a card, buy a toy, invite someone over. Buy a bible ( Bible League) for those who can't afford one in their language. Mail a package to a missionary, donate to a fundraising adoptive family. Pay a bill for someone in need. Offer your trade (car repair, plumbing, accounting, etc) Call a friend who might encouragement, bless a family going through a hard time. Go say "Hi" to new neighbors. Mother Teresa once said "I want you to be concerned about your next door neighbor. Do you know your next door neighbor?"

There is so much that can be done to give hope and encouragement in the coming days and year. We can do so many little acts of compassion that will spread ripples reaching into eternity. Thanks be to Jesus, for giving the perfect gift, Himself. May we give of ourselves, "Spend ourselves ( Isaiah 58:10 ) on behalf of those in need. May we be known by our love, the irresistible, compassionate, radical, self denying love of Christ that compels us to advocate for the greater good of others. That is the gospel. That is the Jesus, the Word made flesh. Merry Christmas! Peace and Joy in Jesus Alida & Rodriguez family.

"Let us remember that the Christmas heart is a giving heart, a wide open heart that thinks of others first. The birth of the
baby Jesus stands as the most significant event in all history, because it has meant the pouring into a sick world of the
healing medicine of love which has transformed all manner of hearts for almost two thousand years... Underneath all the
bulging bundles is this beating Christmas heart." -- George Matthew Adams

"Rejoice, that the immortal God is born, so that mortal man may live in eternity." [John Huss]

"When we ask our children 'What do you want for Christmas?', we are asking a question that breeds selfishness. In order to develop selflessness we should be asking 'What are you going to give?' Christmas is the celebration of God's great gift giving -
'For God so loved the world that he gave...'(John 3:16)" [Robert Flatt]

"It is the Christian belief that much of what is wrong with the world today is moral and spiritual. In other words, the spirit of Christmas is absent." [Handel H. Brown]

"Best of all, Christmas means a spirit of love, a time when the love of God and the love of our fellow men should prevail over all hatred and bitterness, a time when our thoughts and deeds and the spirit of our lives manifest the presence of God. "
[George F. McDougall]

There is always time enough in a day to do God's will. -- Walt Witman

Blessed is The season which Engages the whole world in a Conspiracy of love.-Hamilton Wright Mabie. Links- Stand4Kids Pray for Foster youth- , AdoptUsKids & Heart Galleries of America International Students, Inc Refugees- World Angel Tree Safe Families

Nov 23, 2011

Christian Books

Now that Christmas is upon us I just wanted to share about Vision Forum, a wonderful Christian company. Vision Forum is where I was first introduced to wonderful cd's books and toys all dedicated to holiness, righteous living and godly homemaking and more. The first cd I purchased and listened to was Voddie Bauchams "Centrality of the Home. I was so blessed. Great selection, great Christian Books available at Vision Forum.

Sep 8, 2011

How To Make A Budget & Other Finance Links

Here are some helpful articles from Christian Personal Finance. Be Blessed! Alida
1) How to make a Budget
2) 250 Bible Verses About Money
3) 10 Free Household Budget Spreadsheets
4)5 Bible Verses About Money Every Christian Should Know
5) My Checklist To Financial Freedom
6) How To Make Money With A Blog
7) 20 Best Ways To Save Money By NOT Being Normal
8) I Remember
9) 23 Ways For Teens To Make Money (Maybe Adults Too!)
10) How I Got Out Of The Rat Race
11) My Strategy For Giving Away Millions
12) 24 Top Legitimate Home-Based Business Ideas & Opportunities
13) 5 Legitimate Work-From-Home Jobs
14) How To Sell Stuff On Ebay

Jul 28, 2011

True Friends...

I just returned from a most life changing trip. Many amazing people prayed and donated to help me get to this place of walking in what I was created to do. The place of following God's call of faithfulness, of walking on water and of battling the demons of discouragement from my past. Many have loved me with a Christlike love that blessed and enabled me to do the things Jesus Himself did.

I wanted to preface by saying that I am a loyal friend. My family is the one you see at every birthday party. We have helped countless friends move, we give whatever we have either it be childcare, knowledge, resources or experience. I learn so much from so many amazing wonderful mentors and each thing I learn or anything that can bless I pass on to anyone interested. I was also allowed to see those that I have stayed up late at night more times than I can count praying over friends in crisis, giving them resources, bible verses etc. The Lord showed me that some of these friends must have some issue with me. Some of these that I have poured my heart and life into in the past, tend to be the most critical of me. They seem to always try to snuff out my aspirations of doing mighty works of service for Christ but at the same time copy a great many things from me. I can't be all that bad. :-) It's been said that that imitation is the highest form of flattery. That is true enough. It occurs to me however, that some of those I prayed for the most never called me the entire time my little son was ill in and out of the hospital with a life threatening blood disorder. They and are so negative about the wonderful opportunities taking place within our family, it's so unsettling. Some either make belittling comments or totally ignore my heart for ministering compassion to those in need despite my being enthusiastically supportive of their endeavors. One thing I have noted is that those that are the most critical seem to do the least. Those that made comments donated not even a pair of underwear, not a pair of shoes, not a stick of toothpaste or even a bottle of tylenol or formula to help those literally with NOTHING. Some while flaunting, doing extravagant things like theme park passes and more. I'm not telling anyone what to do with their money but we've been super poor and I've NEVER let a friend adopt of venture on a mission trip where I didn't sacrifice something to sow into the dreams of those that I love even if all I could give was $20, a malaria net or bottles/formula for babies. If you can't donate, you can at least be prayerful and encouraging. However it is NEVER acceptable allow one's self to be an accuser of the brethren or mouthpiece for the evil one. Also there are many hurting people and lots of work to be done. If you don't like our methods of ministering you can always show us yours.

Ephesians 4:29
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister GRACE to the hearers.

Matthew 7:21 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will." 

Atheism-Pull the Plug

Unless someone care's

Unless someone care's

Compassion Verse

"Lifehouse Anything Skit"

Our Mighty Arrows

Our Mighty Arrows