First Prize

images-1 (1)Prit and I are in Fayetteville this weekend, so we decided to attend Northwood Temple Church’s special 4th of July production. Northwood has been one of our main supporting churches for years, and it always feels like coming home when we get to be a part of their services.

After the production, everyone was treated to a special lunch of hots dogs, baked beans, barbecue, potato salad, slaw, and dessert. Knowing there was going to be a cobbler contest and that the judges were going to hand out three prizes: $25 (third place), $50 (second place), and $75 (first place), I decided to try my hand at winning one of them. My goal was to use the money for one of the many needed projects we’re working on in Haiti.

With a little help from Paula Deen, I made a butterscotch caramel peach cobbler. Prit and my in-laws were only too happy to serve as my “taste testers.” Since they all returned for seconds, I thought maybe, just maybe, I could win. I made a second cobbler, this time sprinkling in chopped pecans.

This morning, however, when I dropped my dessert off at the church’s kitchen, my heart sank. I counted 15 different cobblers on the table and knew there would be more women dropping theirs off, too. Northwood has some great Southern cooks and I knew the competition would be stiff.

Third, then second, then first prize were announced. Just as I suspected, there were other cobblers far superior to mine. Even Paula Deen couldn’t save me! However, I was happy to see our dear friend and a faithful supporter of Rehoboth Ministries, Maggie Andrews, receive first prize.

As Prit and I went to congratulate her, she looked at us and said, “Wait just a minute.” Placing her money-filled envelope on the table, she quickly scribbled, “In honor of Connie Jones for the sewing project.” Connie was a friend of hers who passed away a little over a year ago. Maggie then took it, handed it to me, and said, “Please put this towards your sewing center  project.” You can only imagine my surprise, joy, and thankfulness all wrapped up into one!

So, as far as being the first-prize winner – I wasn’t. But, having a first-prize friend donate her first-prize money to our ministry was even better!

If you would like to join Maggie in helping us with our sewing center project, read our previous post, Project #6: Sewing Center.

One Month Down…

images-1Due to the compassion and generosity of our supporters and friends, we have already received enough money to cover the first month of the upcoming school year’s feeding program.

Due to the rising costs of living in Haiti, in addition to the everyday maintenance of keeping this program running, the price has risen to $5,300 a month to feed the students in all three of our schools. This feeds over 1,300 students, teachers, and workers two hearty meals a week. Now that’s a God-sized vision!

Here’s a letter we received today from a friend who also included a check for the kids.

“Dana & Prit,

I am sorry it took me so long to get this check to you. You are doing a great work in Haiti, and I pray for you both and your ministry there. Love and blessings to you both!”

Thanks to all of you that have joyfully responded to our invitation to help us in this endeavor. You know who you are. One hurdle crossed, nine to go!

Water from the Rock

7735180734_1fa97723f7_z“And they tested God in their heart by asking for the food of their fancy. Yes, they spoke against God: they said, Can God prepare a table in the wilderness? Behold, He struck the rock, so that the waters gushed out. and the streams overflowed. Can He give bread also? Can He provide meat for His people?”

“Therefore the Lord heard this and was furious; so a fire was kindled against Jacob, and danger also came up against Israel. Because they did not believe in God, and did not trust in his salvation.” Psalm 78:18-22 (NKJV)

I have been reading through the Psalms lately. A couple of days ago I read Psalm 78 and it seemed to hold the answer to so many questions that have been swirling around in my head. Most of these questions began with the word “How?”

“How in the world are we (you) going to raise $50,000 to feed approximately 1,300 students next year? What about the money for the new church building? How can we (you) possibly raise $150,000 when there are so many other projects vying for our attention? What about the sound equipment for the church and the materials for the Bible institute? Where are we (you) going to get the money to pay professors’ salaries this month when the parents and Bible school students can barely pay tuition?” The conversation in my mind played on. “What about that new pickup? Where are we (you) going to get $30,000 for another vehicle?”

Are we not often guilty of the same sin of unbelief that the Israelites demonstrated in the wilderness? Yes, they had already seen the Lord’s miraculous deliverance at the Red Sea, but they (just like us) lost sight of what was behind them when facing what loomed ahead. When the immediate pressures of the “here and now” threaten to squeeze the very life out of us, do we not react in the same way?

A wise person once said, “If we read the Word, it will read us.” A greater truth could not be spoken. I sensed my thoughts were being discerned while I meditated on verses 18-22 above. The churning in my spirit began to quiet down as I was, once again, reminded of God’s faithfulness and the conversation in my mind began to switch tracks.

Hadn’t he brought my husband out of a 26-day coma, healing his damaged brain when there was no hope of recovery? Didn’t he hear the prayers of so many intercessors around the world who pleaded for Prit’s release from a gang of kidnappers? Hadn’t he healed me instantaneously on my hospital bed in 1985? Hadn’t he always met our most desperate needs as well as the small, insignificant ones? Well, didn’t he?

Once again, I remembered the one who prepared a table in the wilderness for over a million people. I also remembered a people whose clothes and shoes never wore out over a span of forty years. I imagined children dancing around in streams of water that gushed from a rock, laughing as they lapped up the cold, refreshing drink. I tried to imagine too how it would be to watch manna raining down from the sky.

So…it was time to refocus, remember, and rejoice! Never mind that we were now believing God for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Never mind that the bank account empties as quickly as it fills. Never mind that the prices in the marché have increased again. We look forward to not asking “How?”, but exuberantly declaring “Wow!”

She Opens Her Hand

600-06452117tWe would like to share a beautiful testimony with you. We know you will be blessed!

Recently, a generous friend was deeply moved upon to send us a check to help out with our children’s feeding program. Our friend had decided to give a lump sum of $642. Just after she had planned to sow her seed into this ministry, she was laid off from her teaching job at her school. It was a complete surprise to her. Not knowing what her future would hold, and now jobless, she could easily have forgotten about hungry children in Haiti to deal with her “here and now.”

However, on a Saturday, she sat down and wrote a check to Rehoboth Ministries anyway and mailed it. Imagine her surprise, when the next morning, a lady walked up to her in church and handed her an envelope. Tears in her eyes, the lady told her, “I knew I was supposed to give this to someone, but only your face came to mind.” The envelope contained over $400! The Lord honored her obedience.

There is a special place in Jesus’ heart for those unable to help themselves. Widows. Orphans. The downtrodden. Barren women. God’s Word reveals this over and over.

We send a special thanks to the dear sister who, even in her time of lack, gave anyway. We believe the verse below would be applicable to her beautiful spirit.

She opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy. Proverbs 31:20

Would you like to make a special gift to our children’s feeding program or to one of the many projects mentioned on this website? Your gift can make all the difference!

Project #6: Sewing Center

IMG_1874Project #6 involves equipping young men and women with a vocation, thereby providing a much needed income for themselves and their family members. It is our earnest desire to provide the means to give a “hand up” to those individuals that are willing to work hard to provide for themselves. This is preferable to merely doling out money as a temporarily “fix” to poverty. It serves a dual purpose of instilling a sense of pride in one’s own work, as well as eliminating a welfare mentality.

On the Sainte-Philomène compound is a small, dilapidated building. It would never catch anyone’s eye, except for its ugliness. This small building badly needs renovation, but possesses a powerhouse of potential. We wish to renovate the part that’s standing, as well as add another section to create space for the students.

This could be a great opportunity for our aspiring young people. Here are several reasons why.

  • IMG_1875Practically all the schools in Haiti require their students to wear uniforms to class. Thus, there is a great need for tailors and seamstresses. In other words, there is a market for this type of work. 
  • It would provide a salary for two teachers who would give ”hands on” instruction to these students.
  • Several sewing machines were left on the compound by the missionaries who lived here before us. We already have a head start!
  • These students could teach their trade to others and pass on their knowledge to others.

The sewing classes would be offered for three months since most of these students are in school during the year. It appears that, due to the present economic problems in Haiti, the schools will not reopen until October. Therefore, (provided the money is made available in time), these classes could be from July-September.

Costs for building: $2,778

Salaries for 2 professors: $375

Total: $3,153

*This will complete the first phase for the sewing center. There will be additional minimum costs of providing chairs for the students, lighting, and sewing materials for them to use. Would you like to help us provide a future for these young entrepreneurs?

 

Happy Anniversary!

anniversary

In case you’re wondering why there have been no updates lately, it’s because Prit and I have been spending this week in Boone, North Carolina. Due to the generosity of a dear friend, we have and still are enjoying our wedding anniversary in her condo.

Thirty-two years ago, we came to Boone for our honeymoon. It’s been great to return to this beautiful part of North Carolina to relax, read, and pray.

Thank you, Lord, for preserving us all these years and also for great friends who help make life easier!

A Round of Applause

imagesEvery successful organization consists of a first-class team that diligently works together in order for it to perform at its best. This is no less true for Rehoboth Ministries.

So to all of our wonderful supporters, we applaud you. Can you hear it?

Prit and I are so fortunate to have an All-Star team behind us. We really couldn’t do it without you! Thanks again to those of you who…

  • …send regular support every month
  • …helped us meet our $10,000 challenge
  • …said an affirmative “Yes!” to help with the feeding program
  • …said, “I’ll pay for that new sink and door for the mission house.”
  • …have been sending an extra $50 a month to help a bereaved, widowed father in Haiti
  • …pray in the early hours of the morning and late at night for the work in Haiti to succeed
  • …came to Haiti to see the work firsthand and left a lasting impression of love and sacrifice to the Haitian people
  • …encouraged your women’s group to help us tackle a project
  • …have spurred others to give

Would you like to join our team and do great things for God? We need your help!

Project #5 – Grand Conference Room

Project #5 presents our goal for a Grand Conference Room which would be located at the Sainte-Philomène compound. The main building on these grounds presently consists of classrooms for our third church-school plant during the first part of the day and our Bible institute in the afternoons, plus additional offices. On the second story of this complex are two rather large rooms which run parallel with each other. (58 ft. x 19 ft.)

Presently, Pastor Lefort and his family are living in one of these rooms until he can complete the home he is building in Petite-Anse. The other room contains many stored items that we brought over from our previous home. After we find another place for our stuff, it will become a much needed conference room for Rehoboth Ministries. It’s a miracle waiting to happen!

Why is this project unique?

The Grand Conference Room is an altogether unique project. What sets this project apart from the others? Unlike the other needs represented in our ministry, our intention for this room is to make it a source of revenue for the overall mission. In addition to having a state-of-the-art meeting place to hold conferences, marriages, graduations, concerts, and funerals for our own work, we will also make this room available to outside Christian organizations that wish to rent a low-cost facility. It will be much less expensive than the hotels in town, yet very accessible to those that are both in and outside the city of Cap-Haitian. (Sainte-Philomène is located just outside the main entrance to the city.)

The funds from this special project will be funneled to other much-needed projects. It would also provide a salary to one of our responsible workers who possesses a good business mind, thus providing an income for his family.

Another advantage to having our own meeting place is that this would enable us to eliminate the expenditures for renting a hotel conference room every time we need a nice place to meet..

What will it take?

One part of the room is already squared off for a couple of restrooms. Everything from the toilets and tile, to the doors, light fixtures and mirrors are included in the price below. What was once a small storage area will be totally renovated to serve the conference guests as restrooms. The remainder of the floor area will be tiled as well.

Costs for Phase 1

  • Total for materials: $4,300
  • Labor costs: $1,820
  • Total Price: $6,100

*Phase 1 will prepare the way for Phase 2 which includes a paint job, purchase of chairs, a podium, light fixtures, fans, and two air conditioners for the main area.

You Can Make a Difference!

IMG_1088Here are some responses from the wonderful folks that have agreed to partner with us in the children’s feeding program. Thank you for helping us make a difference in these children’s lives!

Would you like to partner with us? $40 feeds a child for an entire year. We have a L-O-N-G way to go. (Check out the previous post for details) But, you can help us make a difference!

  • “Yes please add us to the list and I will mail the check tomorrow! We love y’all to and feel it is an honor to help with this project. Thanks for thinking of us. God bless you.”
  • “Dana: I would like to start making a monthly donation (it won’t be much) to your ministry. Who should I mail those checks to? You can use it as you see need.”
  • “We will send a donation. Great to hear from you!”
  • “Definitely! One of the points in last Sunday’s sermon was the importance of caring for the poor. God’s timing!”
  • “Yes I would!! I love feeding the children. God bless you in all you do for the kingdom of God! I pray an abundance of wealth on your lives to meet every great work. II Cor. 9:11”
  • “I asked my husband if we could add a monthly gift to the Feeding Program and still continue with the other ministries that we already help support. He said that would be fine, but if it is ok, he would rather give it as a yearly gift. I will get the check off this week. I will continue to lift this ministry up in prayer. God bless you both!”
  • “It’s dear to our hearts as well and having been there I can say that this is truly worthy of our support. Keep up the great work and another cheque is in the mail!”