Monday, September 25, 2006


This little one is 9 months old, believe it or not. He is a very small nine month old. His arms and legs are very thin, and he doesn’t even cry when he is hungry, because he is used to being hungry. His mother left him with a go-go and an older sister. The mother shows up now and then. The baby is not getting milk. The only thing that the baby is fed is soft porridge. When they brought the baby to me that day, it was 3pm. He hadn’t eaten since 10am. He was not crying or fussing.

I was teaching the health care workers an update on how to do a physical exam and they brought this baby to me to do an exam on. He was full of scabies, and so dirty that I could hardly stand the smell. He needed a clean diaper desperately, but there was not one around. One of the ladies that cooks at the CarePoint is trying to help take care of this baby. When I heard that he was not getting milk, it broke my heart.

This baby is very malnourished. I gave the lady that was helping take care of him some medicine for the scabies, and told her that I would bring some milk. The next day, when I brought the formula and mixed it for him, there was no bottle, so I put it in a cup. The baby gulped the milk from the cup like there was no tomorrow. I wanted to cry, I knew that this little one had not had milk in a long time. I tried to take the cup away, and he reached for it. Milk was going everywhere, but he didn’t care, he wanted that milk. It was gone in no time. I told the ladies at the CarePoint to feed him 5 or 6 times a day while he was there, and send some formula home. Later that week, I came and the baby wasn’t at the CarePoint. They said that the mother showed up and the baby was at home with her. I sent formula home and showed them how to mix it. I pray that we can keep this one healthy and help the family take care of him. I know that the Lord loves this little one more than I can imagine. Please pray for me that I will have the wisdom that I need to know how to handle this situation, and many more like it.

Friday, September 15, 2006

One Year Anniversary

It was one year ago today that we started our journey here to Swaziland. (Of course the preparation started way before that.) It is humbling to look back and see where we started to where we are now. I don’t think anyone in our family could imagine where we are now versus when we first arrived here. Stepping into a culture that is soooo totally different from what we were used to. I would never make it out like we have “arrived” and are at home or even comfortable here. There are countless reminders every day that this is not our home. Abraham (Hebrews 11:8-10) comes to mind: a stranger in a foreign land; and like Abraham we also look to our permanent home.

I can remember going into the Spar (supermarket) or CashBuild (Swazi Home Depot) and being so intimidated by everything. Now it’s no big deal. Police roadblocks don’t bother me as much as they irritate me now.

So what have we accomplished in the past year? Teresa has been making weekly visits to the CarePoints to provide basic health care. We’ve taken responsibility for the CarePoints at Makholweni and Madonsa: meeting with the cooks, teachers, and Bible Club teachers to make sure the goals Children’s Cup has set for each area: food, health care, Bible Clubs, informal schooling, and anything else that you can think of. Trying to get each group or individual to work together to meet the needs of the children. And I’ve been the front man for Children’s Cup construction. Now trying to coordinate at two different sites all the material and workers. Doesn’t seem like much when you put it down like that. But I was driving home from Makholweni this evening and all the kids at the CarePoint and all the kids along the road that had already left were laughing, shouting and waving “Bye Bye”, “Bye malungu (white man)”, “Hello how are you”, “I’m fine, how are you”……. Smiling happy kids. Who had a good meal and learned about Jesus. That says a whole lot more than trying to describe what we’ve been “doing” and says a lot about what has been accomplished: by God’s grace only.

I look at the transition our kids have made and am so proud. They were literally thrown into a new environment: new schools, new friends, and new soccer teams. Like us: new everything. They have done exceptionally well. All are doing well in school, if not excelling at a curriculum (if I can say it) is harder than what they had in the States. They’ve started Bible studies, led other students to Christ, and been lights to their campuses. We couldn’t be more proud of them and their witness here.

So where do we go from here? While we are looking forward to visiting family and friends in December, our hearts are set on continuing the work here: to reach more kids and to be there as they grow: to see them reach maturity in Jesus: which is their (and this countries) only hope.

A special thanks to all our friends and family for you prayers and support. We couldn’t have done any of this with out you. We pray God’s richest blessings on each and everyone of you. You share in each victory and blessing here.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Final Push

We start our final push to complete the Mission of Mercy CarePoint at Madonsa and Nurse's Station at Makholweni this month. Our kids helped paint a little at Madonsa between the school terms. We took last week to leave for a short break as well. There were two Swazi national holidays last week also so we thought it would be a good time to go rest and relax before the kids go back to school for their final term for the school year. We spent a few days at a beach in Mozambique north of Xai-Xai. The (Children's Cup) Rodgers' and the (Baptist Mission) Poe's went with us for a great couple of days.

We're back now, the kids start school tomorrow, and we at Children's Cup have to push to complete the CarePoint and Clinic before October.