Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Dia del Niño

Dear Praying Friends,

I was hoping to do a quick update through pictures about the goings on this past month (actually Sept). I don’t think it’s going to happen. At least not the quick part. In the photo at left is Emma Isabella. She is growing like a weed and she continues to challenge all of us on many levels. Last month in the middle of all the curfews, I decided to try and potty train her. Don’t ask me why. Sometimes I have these thoughts that adding more stress to the existing high level of stress will somehow cancel out the initial stress. I don’t know if you follow me on that one. Some of you might. I bought a book called Potty Training in Less Than a Day while I was in the States last summer. During the weekend of the longest curfew, Isabella and I were holed up in my bedroom for four hours with all the suggested materials so that she could have her intensive training. I had baby wet-its-pants, tons of water, treats galore, and a plastic potty that converts into a step for washing hands. First the baby doll I bought (that was supposed to be the example) dripped water continuously since it didn’t come with a plug or anything. The variety of dolls that are available in Honduras that go pee-pee is pretty limited. Say, like one. I tried everything, even duck tape to no avail. So that was our first disaster. Then Isa would go a tiny bit in the potty only to have a huge accident in her training pants several minutes later. According to the book I had to have Isa wash out her training pants so that she could understand that there were consequences to her accidents. However she loved washing out her wet pants because she absolutely loves playing in the water. So that was disaster number two. I think you get the picture. Needless to say, Isa was not potty trained in less than a day. After four hours the floor was covered with water, tissues, cookie wrappers, and my exhausted frame. Isabella was still alert and raring to go! I felt like a terrible Mom since the book stated that hardly any children failed to launch in that amount of time with this method! I thought about throwing in the towel (training pants) and giving up but we have persisted and she is now going much more in the potty than anywhere else. I was reflecting on this the other day and realized that I don’t mind her messes so much because I love her so. “Love covers a multitude of sins” has taken on a whole new meaning for me!

September is a big celebration month in Honduras and one of the most celebrated days is Dia del Niño (Children’s Day). Gisela and Norma, two of our Jericho House staff members, presented a drama on the streets in an area of the city where many prostitutes live. We have been trying to reach out to the women and their children, many of whom are already involved in illicit activities. So this day we celebrated the children with a drama and games and prayer.

In the photo below, Marlyn is leading the games and I am discovering he prayer needs of a group of young boys. Several of them had tears in their eyes when they talked about what was going on in their homes. So much need for Jesus and His healing touch.

This young girl in the middle of the photo is a friend of Leslie’s. Leslie, you may remember, came to be a part of our Jericho family when her mother brought her to a medical brigade almost two years ago. Leslie was 11 yrs old and already involved in activities too yucky to mention here. So she has been praying for her friend Keiberly who lives the same kind of lifestyle that caused Leslie to look for help. If you take a minute to look at her gaze, you can tell she has seen way too much for her young years. We have joined Leslie in praying for Keiberly and ask you to do the same. We know God will show us how and when to move.

We are so thankful for God’s continued provision. It always touches me deeply at how perfectly God provides for us. We found ourselves scraping the bottom of the barrel so we prayed once again for provision and God touched different people who had no notion of our situation. The Honduran Rotary Club sent us tons of powdered milk, a staff member’s husband provided eggs for the Villa, and a church member had an unexpectedly large corn crop which she donated to us. Pictured here are some of our young people preparing the corn for grinding. In the corn grinding picture, Maria Fernanda is second from the right. Her mother (Norma) works at Jericho. Last week she was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Mafa (as we affectionately call her) has responded to this surprise illness with grace and faith. She told her mother not to worry because God is going to use this for His glory. We are already seeing how this situation is bringing her family members and classmates closer to Jesus. And for this we rejoice! Please pray for Mafa and her family.

I wanted to ask you especially to pray for a retreat we are having this weekend out at the Villa for young people who are at high risk for entering prostitution. The conference is on sexual purity and we are sensing that the Lord wants to heal and deliver many. It’s called “I vote for purity”. Elections are next week and we wanted to take advantage of all the emphasis on that event to promote this event! Speaking of the elections, we are so thankful for the way God has answered prayer regarding the political situation. Things are much calmer and people are sensing that clean elections are definitely the way out of this difficult political situation. We are thankful that the US finally decided to back the elections and for the way that the truth of the situation has come to light.

There is more but I will close for now. Thank you so much for praying for us and for being used as a channel of blessing to all of us at Jericho. We truly could not do this ministry without you!
For the least of these,

Betsy and the Jericho crew

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