Thursday, November 27, 2008

So Blessed

Happy Thanksgiving y'all! In case it's a challenge for any of us to think of things to add to our thankful list, here's an excerpt from a letter my in-laws sent who are missionaries working at an ophanage in India right now. Read this, and see if anything changes on your thankful list.

"There is a brother from church who has for the past 8 yrs been taking children into his home & working to get accredited by the government. We knew his situation was quite desperate so we visited his "Seventh Star Home for Destitute Children" yesterday. He & his wife have 36 children there, 2 of their own, in two small concrete huts. I cannot even describe the primitive conditions -- an outhouse under construction, a small kitchen with gaping holes in the roof & rain pouring in, no stove, only gathered brush & sticks to make a fire to cook the rice & very limited food which they eat. The children sleep without pillows & possibly without blankets, all huddled together on about 6 rolled out bamboo mats about as thick as a cardboard box (they cluster & spoon together for warmth). Electricity is out much of the time in their rural area. Most of the children attend school during the day & are at Paul's place just in the morning, evening & weekend. Many do not have shoes or sandals. He & his wife are trying to teach the children the Gospel but most only speak Tamil. They have no TV, no radio, no toys, no books (except for what they bring home from school), no music, no scriptures but Paul's, no transportation except for Paul's 2-wheeled motorcycle. Yet as we visited the children were all sitting in neat rows quietly on the concrete floor. They sang, "I Am a Child of God," and listened & smiled as Paul had us speak to them & tell them of our lives & mission & family and then translated for them. Our hearts are touched by this good man & his wife & their efforts to help these children, and we will certainly try to enlist some help. Apparently Paul does some translating for the church from English to Tamil & gets some money for that. He also receives 17,000 rupees per month from Judge Sheffield, the major sponsor of Pathway -- but that means that on months when translation work is slim his "family" lives on about $350. (To give you a measuring stick, we pay about $450/ mo. for our town apartment the two of us occupy half time)."

Shall we count our blessings?

Here's what I'm thankful for today:

1. a comfortable home
2. food in my fridge
3. employment
4. affectionate, energetic, sweet, smart kids
5. a patient, hard-working, dedicated husband
6. a Heavenly Father who loves us
7. a Savior who loves us

What are you thankful for?

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