Final Post from Yei

28 01 2013

???????????????????????????????So many ministry opportunities, where did the time go? We’ve proven the cardinal rule of trips to Harvesters true again—plan for all you’ll do, but be flexible in case plans totally change. Sometimes God’s plans are a bit different from ours, but it’s always a pleasure seeing what’s around the next corner at Harvesters. If you’ve missed it in prior posts, here it is: everyone has something to offer at Harvesters. Skills, talents, perspectives, blessings . . . we’re all different and we’ve been happily surprised to see how we’ve been able to use how God made us in ways we’d never planned for during this trip.

20130123_112257We conducted VBS (music, story, games, crafts, etc.) for a gazillion kids (from Harvesters and church Sunday School classes); performed dental assessments and provided fluoride treatments for nearly 150 orphans here; our ladies had bible time with house mamas and cleaners and cooks, and blessed them with foot washing, stories, goodies and scarves; we’ve painted the exterior of the church; taught a ton of new worship songs to kids who love to sing; worked with the girls here on mending clothes; conducted financial planning for the laborers and several teachers; we’ve cleaned up and updated 3 laptops; we’ve repaired one bench and built a new one; we’ve enjoyed a chicken feast with the kids and staff; removed the time-worn, memory-filled boards from the kids’ area and replaced them with new bench boards; we’ve done a bunch of “honey-do’s” in the dorms (fixing shutters, dresser drawers, cabinet doors, etc.); built a new kid’s bench; cleaned, updated, and made a bunch of staff computers faster-higher-more-reliable; dug some of the holes for the clothes line “farm” (think enough clothes line for 125 kids and staff); we’ve donated blood at the hospital, named a baby and delivered another baby; we’ve participated in home cell groups, worship time, and prayer meeting; have gone on many, many walks with a different kid holding each finger; have had multiple little ones fall asleep on us during Friday movie night; and are wishing there were more days in which to pack even more.

20130125_152458At the same time, we’ve been reminded of the brevity of life. Hearing death drums for a woman, learning of parents who will bury for an eighth time, seeing the number of grave mounds grow where we’ve visited before, and missing a member of the family as we visit a prior acquaintance. These are the things that are common here, causing pain but not so much surprise, and it reminds me of the passage about life being but a vapor.

???????????????????????????????As our time here draws close to an end, I’m reminded of the amazing work of rescue that God is performing here at Harvesters on a daily basis. So many stories of children rescued from a likely death, and provided with food, shelter, training and love. More importantly, I see the fruit of Harvesters’ investment—the payback for sweat and tears, as some of the kids adopted early on are growing up and moving to school beyond South Sudan. The kids here have been nourished in the Word, and though we see some of the same challenges we face with kids in our church, we see what discipleship looks like and watch as the oldest orphans teach God’s word to those right behind them, who in turn are watching after the younger ones. Much to praise God about here and much to pray for.

As the teams come home soon, we hope you’ll ask us about the trip and let us share with you personally about the efforts here and how God can change you while using your unique gifts to bless children, staff and a community here in South Sudan.

Brent Curtis

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3 responses

28 01 2013
Robbie Rodgers

Robbie, Buck’s sister, here. Been following the blog, appreciate the pictures and writeups which make your journey real for us back home. Much love and prayer has been coming your way – from everyone, I’m sure! I’m hoping this gets to Buck, because all of his family here in Virginia are sending him a big hug for his Birthday, January 29th. If you see this in time for his birthday, please give him a big hug for us. Even if you see it late, give him a big hug!!! Blessings to you all.

28 01 2013
Tamara Krause

Praying for you all to have a smooth and safe trip back home. I have enjoyed reading all the posts. Look forward to hearing more stories. Yall must be bringing the warm air with you since it is supposed to be in the 70s on Wednesday.
Tamara Krause

29 01 2013
Erin

Happy birthday, dad! Enjoy your day. Good work. Safe travels to the Yei people.
-Erin

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