Generously Caring for Life

I’ve just finished reading the book: “The Deafening Sound of Silent Tears” by Juliet Barker. It is a very impacting story about a project in the UK called Caring for Life. Do trust you will buy a copy from Aamazon. Mine was only 1p plus postage. Amazing value….worth much more…Also check out the website below….

Twenty three years ago, Peter Parkinson, a Baptist minister in Leeds, and members of his congregation were faced with a challenge to their faith that would change lives forever.

In 1986, several homeless young men started attending Leeds Reformed Baptist Church. This plunged some of the church members into a whole new form of outreach. They were challenged to follow Jesus’ example of reaching out to those in need.

This is how Caring For Life began.
A separate registered charity was formed and prayer letters were sent to a number of churches across the UK.

In 1987 a home was donated for the most vulnerable homeless young men attending the church. The three pictured on the right (from the left, Gary, Owen and Colin) were the first to live in our residential home. Carey House was opened in order to share the love of Jesus, by offering security, safety, love and respect for the men for life, or as long as they wished to stay.

Today, Gary is living independently, supported by our Housing Support team and comes to the farm every week day; Owen is in regular contact with CFL living independently and holding down a responsible job. Colin is very poorly, but we still have contact with him as care is always offered “for life”.

Crag House Farm became the base for daytime activity projects, a place where vulnerable, socially excluded people could begin to re-build their lives.

The projects at Crag House Farm started with a flock of free range hens; since then agricultural, horticultural, conservation, art and craft and woodwork projects have developed, along with adult literacy, office skills and a new drama project.

Caring For Life’s ministry grew rapidly and for a time it was also involved in setting up children’s homes in Romania, through CFL International. CFL was asked to help to share Jesus’ love in a land where much persecution and great suffering had been the order of the day. These homes are not run by CFL now, but are still much-needed and functioning.

CFL’s Resettlement work (now known as our Housing Support Project) also took off. The need to support people in their own accommodation was greater than ever. Those who chose to move out of CFL’s homes and live independently needed ongoing support, but the Trust also received daily requests to house young people who had nowhere else to turn. The staff team grew as we endeavoured to reach more and more people who were suffering and struggling with ‘ghosts’ of the past.

With the help of Action Time, a Yorkshire Television programme, CFL built a new workshop in 1995. It included a vehicle maintenance facility, a fully functioning woodwork area and much-needed storage for agricultural equipment.

Crag House Farm had kindly been secured for the Trust by supporters and a donated timber building had been put up by the staff and young people themselves, to provide catering and recreational facilities for those attending the daytime projects.

By the goodness of God, CFL were able to purchase Tindall House. Eight men, including some of those who were in the original Carey House, received a new home. The group of men gradually became a real family.

Generous donations allowed the purchase of polytunnels, opening up opportunities for disabled people to come to the farm for work experience and making it possible to share the love of Jesus with yet another needy group of people.

After a period of fundraising, CFL was then able to open another supported home, based on the same principles as Tindall House, but this time for women.

We are amazed at how far the Trust has come, and can only put it down to God’s goodness and grace in providing us with a loyal, supportive group of people who pray and support this ministry every day, every month, every year since its inception, and we pray, on into the future.

http://www.caringforlife.co.uk/index.html

Generous Neighbour

A up-to-date story from Canada about a wonderful neighbour who showed generosity in action….. over the fence….

“I realized Saturday morning that I had not pre-registered for that local missions projects session that I had thought all week I would be attending. In which case, I told myself, I can stay home and get some yard work done to winterize. It was a lovely fall day, and mild enough to work without a heavy jacket.

When I came out of the house, my neighbour, Joe, was cleaning eaves troughs with his leaf blower. He had started with his own eaves, then stepped over to my roof, cleaned my eaves, and stepped over to the next neighbour’s houses and took care of theirs too. There is only one giant step between the roofs so this was easy for him to do.

Next I swept up the leaves and debris Joe had blown out of the eaves, and after that I tackled the big job I had hoped I would get done before winter. I carried everything out of my little garden shed, and swept up clouds of bird manure and feathers.

Soon I could tell that they must have thought that shed was a vast castle of a birdhouse all summer. I counted at least 6 or 7 holes under the eaves where the sun shone through. The friends who had given me this shed had long ago stuffed some fiberglass insulation into those gaps where the roof met the walls. The birds had tunneled right through that stuff.

Besides my garden tools I stored some boards and odd lumber pieces that I had brought along from Dad’s shed when I moved here. You never know when you’ll need a piece of wood. I picked up a couple of the smaller pieces and tried to nail them over the gaps. I was not doing so well, and banged my poor right thumb again.

Neighbour Joe heard me and asked what I was doing. I explained how I was trying to bird-proof the shed. He said, “measure that distance there, and hand me those three fence boards.” I did. In no time he had cut four lengths, and he came over to nail them in place under the roof from the outside. Voila! All the holes were covered!

All I had to do was carry things back inside and arrange them neatly. Now I even have space to walk around on the floor in the center of it all.”

Story taken from Rose Bouquet: http://blogs.ruthes-secretroses.com/

Global Nomad
26 October 2010

Generous Parenting

LIFE’S DEADLY GAME

It is a tough challenge for any single parent to bring up two little ones alone. But when that ’parent’ is seven, the tough challenge becomes appalling.

In the Philippines, young Maria lives in a shanty town, eking out a living for her two young charges. Typically, homes in shanty towns are put together with bits of wrought iron or even cardboard boxes, piled on top of each other, and offer shelter which easily collapses in the next typhoon or monsoon. Ironically, in wealthier communities, children would put together a shelter like this as a play house. Among the poor, though, this is a deadly game of life and death.

Maria’s mother was murdered when she became tangled in a local drug feud, sending her father’s mental health tumbling. Who, then, did that leave to care for the younger children? Only Maria, herself a child. She is now the unofficial head of her household, bearing the weight of her family’s survival on her own small shoulders. Her father visits the children on weekends, but is unable to provide any real care or parenting.

It is Maria who feeds them on scraps and leftover food where she can, puts them to sleep at night and protects them from the dangers that abound in the cut throat existence that is slum life.

All that changed when Maria was found by a non-profit group working in the area. They were shocked when they realised Maria’s plight. While their main programme is a kindergarten for slum children, they have a deep commitment to those living in slum areas. With Maria and her siblings now in their programme, they are helping find foster care or a children’s home that will give these tiny survivors the support they need and deserve.

We know this group well. We have seen their tireless efforts in the past and supplied them with play equipment and uniforms as they reach out to give embattled people a better future in countless ways, restoring both bodies and souls of all ages. This week, when one of the organisation’s directors passed through our site, we were able to give him a wheelchair that he had requested for a woman with a terminal brain tumour living in the slums. Trapped in her bed and miserable, she wanted only a wheelchair to be able to sit outside in the sun.

This group is a moving example of the kind of work done by many of those we support in nations around the world. We sometimes think of them as fighting on the front lines, while we work as best we can to supply them with ‘ammunition’ of love: those goods that they can use to better serve the people around them.

Thank you, so very much, for being a part of this fight. It is, tragically, a ‘deadly’ battle and your support is invaluable for us and for those on the front lines.

Article from Global Hand http://www.globalhand.org

“We should give as we would receive, cheerfully, quickly, and without hesitation; for there is no grace in a benefit that sticks to the fingers.” — Seneca

Generous Snowflakes

When we freeze water, we make ice cubes. When God freezes water, he makes snowflakes – each one different.” Vaughn Roberts (via Justin Long)

Our Lord is infinitely creative (as evidenced in the uniqueness of each snow flake) and able to bring millions of unique members of humanity together in His Global Church to accomplish His cosmic plans for the redemption of this world. Vaughn Roberts, rector at St. Ebbes Church in Oxford, England, shared from Ephesians 4 about the need for unity in the Church within a context of unique gifts and perspectives.

With phrases like, “Unity doesn’t mean uniformity.” He challenged the Church to a standard of Truth but a posture of love and acceptance within that context.

This focus on unity built on the first three days where we were challenged to see our roles in God’s cosmic plan that is based on eternal Truth and manifest in our transformed lives. Ephesians 4 was critical to setting the stage for the focus on 21st Century and the priorities of our work. Why was this so important? Because the many countries now defining the missions movement and the new generation that is preparing to lead these new efforts are going to come with new ideas, different strategies and unique perspectives. The Church as a whole must find ways to stand on the same foundation but allow for the unique outpourings of God’s Spirit as He seeks to redeem the world.

Drafted by Jon Hirst at Lausanne 2010.South Africa.

Global Nomad
23 October 2010

“I expect to pass through this world but once; any good thing therefore that I can do, or any kindness that I can show to any fellow creature, let me do it now; let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.” — Etienne de Grellet

Healing Generosity

A young girl had been in a coma at a hospital. The doctors had tried everything – until all her family could do was wait. Next morning, she woke up refreshed and alert. ” A man called Jesus appeared to me as I lay here unconscious and he touched me” she said. “After that, I woke up”.

It was her only explanation of her total healing. The years passed and she searched – but could learn nothing more about Jesus. One day she was sipping coffee with a group of friends discussing Scripture stories. There Jesus was described healing the woman of faith.

The young lady jumped up and said, “That’s my Jesus. He healed me, too. Tell me all about him.”

[Story from Bible Society magazine.]

Global Nomad
19 October 2010

You will discover that you have two hands. One is for helping yourself and the other is for helping others.” — Audrey Hepburn

Generous Creations

Created
Take a humble bike chain, give it to a metal worker like Kamrul, and after a bit of hammering, tapping, soldering and all-round ingenuity you get a photo frame. Kamrul’s workshop in Moradabad, India, is a busy hive of resourcefulness, where everyday objects get turned into something new – useful gifts sold by Created.Take a humble bike chain, give it to a metal worker like Kamrul, and after a bit of hammering, tapping, soldering and all-round ingenuity you get a photo frame.

Kamrul’s workshop in Moradabad, India, is a busy hive of resourcefulness, where everyday objects get turned into something new – useful gifts sold by Created. Created, run by Tearfund, sells ethically sourced goods made by artisans such as Kamrul, who in return receive a fair income which gives them the means to get out of poverty and improve their future.

Kamrul’s venture employs six craft workers who produce a range of goods with the help and management of our partner, Noah’s Ark. Over ten years, Noah’s Ark has helped finance an extension to the workshop and the house where Kamrul lives on site, improving working and living conditions.

Kamrul clearly relishes the opportunities that his partnership with Noah’s Ark and Created is producing and the potential it offers to leave material and spiritual poverty behind. He said, ‘From the work that we get now, we can employ six artisans here. If I have one request it is that you would get many more people to buy our goods so that we will have more work.’

Can you meet Kamrul’s challenge? Can you help our partner Noah’s Ark fund more schools, health clinics and clean water supplies by supporting Created?

The transformation you could bring isn’t just about the physical; it’s about whole person change. Pastor Daniel Lal works alongside Noah’s Ark to bring spiritual support to the artisans and their families. Samuel Masih, Chief Executive of Noah’s Ark, said, ‘It feels good to be part of something that changes people’s lives. That is the object – to see the lives of artisans and their families transformed.’

The need for continued support is underlined by recent events. Rains and floods of ‘unprecedented fury’ have hit parts of India, bringing renewed hardship to people living on the margins of poverty.

In Moradabad, some artisans have lost stock, power supplies have been cut and the movement of goods has been curtailed. Praise God that Noah’s Ark’s offices were not directly affected, but the floods have caused distress and damaged houses of their artisans and workers.

*To view Created’s gifts and to support their work, click here

http://www.createdgifts.org/tearcraft/public/home.jsf?contentPage=0&contentTab=0

Global Nomad

14 October 2010

“Listen with regard when others talk. Give your time and energy to others; let others have their own way; do things for reasons other than furthering your own needs.” — Larry Scherwitz

Vision for Generosity

Money is not the end-all gauge to successful CMS,[“Champion Migration Strategy”] but it is a big part of it. After all, since a guiding principle of CMS is Transformational Giving, then finances must be a portion of the measurement for success. If giving is not happening, then finances are part of the reflection on your successful run at CMS.

In the magazine, Outcomes, David Willis discusses what he calls a Vision for Generosity. In this issue he distinguishes between what he calls ‘tipping’ and giving. Tipping happens when we simply exchange information (what we have taught in the workshops as transactional giving). So tipping is the equivalent of an offering for you after a service. Then you leave the church and that is all you ever hear from the church and their members. The offering sometimes is just a ‘tip’ for coming. The tip is based on your ‘service’. (Pun intended.) Good service good tip, bad service bad tip. Tough way to fund a ministry, huh?

Giving is more than this. Giving happens when participation and engagement occur. Giving goes far beyond the dollar. The dollar is part of it but it goes further. It is action-based, not spectator-based. It is relational. We are developing people, not accounts. Your account is a portion of the fruit but not all (i.e., Transformational Giving). Remember, works produce fruit, not fruits produce work.

So is it good CMS if funding goals are not reached? Not if giving is part of the transformation. Since giving is learned not latent and CMS is a teaching tool used to teach how giving is part of spiritual formation, the bottom line of an account can be one of several bench-marks for CMS being successfully implemented.

It’s Not Transformational if No One is Giving
Posted on October 11, 2010 by EFoley

Todd Eckhardt is the Director of Partner and Champion Development at World Gospel Mission in Marion, IN. More than that, he’s one of my favorite Transformational Giving minds because he’s working both in the trenches and at the frontier of TG thought. I asked for his permission to post here a recent email he wrote to World Gospel Mission overseas personnel and development staff. The two key points that he makes that I love are the difference between a tip and a gift (answer: it’s all in the involvement) and the reason why money is still one important measure of success in Transformational Giving (answer: because if people don’t give it means their involvement is superficial, not comprehensive). Great post. By the way, “CMS” stands for “Champion Migration Strategy”, World Gospel Mission’s custom formulation of Transformational Giving practices. Heeeeere’s Todd!

Posted by Eric Foley on: http://www.ericfoley.com

Global Nomad
12 October 2010

“The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others.” — Ghandi

Resources on Generosity!

What are some of the best resources you know of for giving advice, help, and instruction in giving?

Is it superfluous to say the Bible?

We need to start there—and stay there, really, daily—in order to learn and learn again that we don’t have a need for new tools, techniques, and strategies. God doesn’t permit those to penetrate deeply or permanently in the human heart. Instead, we need to become more consciously and deeply aware of the philanthropy God pours into us daily. That gives us the joyful confidence to become philanthropists ourselves.

We give comprehensively because giving is a means of grace by which we come to know him more fully and by which others can catch a glimpse of him through us. For now it’s a dim mirror. But the joy will be that when we see him, we’ll have no difficulty recognizing him from what we were permitted to see.

Posted by Eric Foley on: http://www.ericfoley.com

Global Nomad
11 October 2010

“Believe, when you are most unhappy, that there is something for you to do in the world. So long as you can sweeten another’s pain, life is not in vain.”  — Helen Keller

Generosity with books (4)

Below are a few more thoughts/ideas about using literature and books generously. Do trust you find them of interest and are even able to make use of some of them.

TELIT
Professionally designed and relevant, these thematic brochures are excellent for passing on to folk. There are general /standard titles but you can also tailor-make one specially for your own project, town are organisation. Well worth looking into…  http://www.telitquick.org/

WTM
A small faith mission with a small support base, and 200+ English tracts online for you to download – translate – and print This is better than sending quantities of tracts overseas at costs our mission cannot afford, nor can most needy missions. However, we are happy to fill orders for tracts if you can cover the minimal fee and postage.
http://westerntractmission.org/index.shtml

MANNA
Manna Publications produce excellent cost-effective commentaries in local languages. You can read all about their range and download possibilities on their website: http://mannapublications.org/

MISET
“The Most Impoortant Story Ever Told” is a first class children’s folder which has been printed in many languages. http://bookmooch.com/detail/971511587x

More to follow….

Global Nomad
09 October 2010

“Unless we think of others and do something for them, we miss one of the greatest sources of happiness.” — Ray Lyman Wilbur

Generous Training

The mechanics of hope in Cambodia
30 September 2010

The whine of motorbike engines zipping in and out of traffic is a familiar soundtrack to street life in Cambodia. Two-wheeled transport is simply the most affordable way to get around for many Cambodians for whom a car is too pricey.

But like any mechanical machine, motorbikes break down and when they do their owners often can’t afford for them to be off the road for long. Being a trained motorbike mechanic in Cambodia can provide a decent living and that’s why a Tearfund partner is behind a training project to help disadvantaged youngsters. The Cambodian Hope Organisation (CHO) literally teaches the nuts and bolts of motorbike mechanics.

Changes

Tei is 15 and has spent more than six months learning his trade with CHO so far, combining half his day working on bikes and the other half continuing his education at school. His newly acquired repair skills have already helped him get his neighbour’s bike back on the road and the money he’s earning is paying for his schooling.

Attending a CHO centre with other students, Tei also learns about the Bible, something he enjoys: ‘God has changed me to do good things,’ he says. ‘I will continue to finish studying motorbike repairs and after that to make a small business to support my education and my family. It’s great for a Christian organisation to come and develop my community.’

• Please give thanks that CHO training is bringing physical and spiritual change to young lives in Cambodia.
• Ask God to continue to bless this work and that it will bring transformation to more people.
• Cambodia is ranked 137 out of 182 countries in the 2009 Human Development Index. Pray for more of its citizens to be equipped to overcome poverty.

http://www.tearfund.org/

This is a wonderful example of generosity in training young folk to gain skills that will enable them to generate income for their families and themselves. [Global Nomad]

Global Nomad
07 October 2010

“The only gift is a portion of thyself.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson