God’s Handiwork.

“I know the plans I have for you…”

Imagine with me if you will.  The other night I was driving, the weather was perfect, a warm summer night with a clear starry sky above.  It reminded me of many summer nights growing up in Colorado.  I had my sun roof open (I’m not sure when it became a “moon roof”, it does point out how old I am/my car is though) and the smell of the night air was all around.  It is one of my favorite smells, it makes the world seem like a simpler place.  I was thinking about Swaziland as I frequently do, remembering conversations and future plans.

Then the Lord opened up a beautiful image to me.

The Lord showed me a small glimpse of how He is about the work of bringing healing to a hurting nation.  (Let me preface this by saying  that as soon as I think I hear the Lord… I race into “self doubt” and do a grand job of explaining it away, you know, my “active imagination” and all.  That being said, I have to be true to what I think I heard.)  In my mind’s eye I saw five fingers of a hand, palm up, fingers as if the hand were holding an invisible softball.  Strange, isn’t it?

Jenn and I aren’t the only people feeling called to the farm.  There is a young couple who are planning on moving to the farm for a time.  From what I understand she is a teacher with a concentration in agronomy, he is completing his doctoral studies in agriculture.  Also, there is a man who is currently discerning a call to live at the farm.  A charismatic man, his desire is to continue teaching a successful money management program to anyone who will listen, much like Peter Kopp does in Swaziland and in the surrounding countries.  This man also has been involved in local politics and has the kind of understanding that goes beyond what you get from just reading the newspapers.  To brag a little bit on my wife, Jenn really is a gifted teacher, the kind you hope your child gets in school.  She has a real yearning to help the kids that are all too easily “written off” and I love working with my hands, fixing things or building, helping people in the midst of despair to bring hope.

“plans to prosper you and not to harm you…”

Now, if you know about the farm at all, you might ask “Isn’t that what Peter and Mary Jean do already?”  The funny thing about farms is that things grow amazingly well in fertile soil.    Over time more orphans were taken in, more foster homes were built, more class rooms, more housing and support buildings.  More needs met, more people reached, more of the community lifted up.  What started off a decade ago as a big chunk of rolling hillside has become a pillar of a growing community.  In fact the only thing about the farm that hasn’t grown is the ground itself.

Imagine the impact that could be done for God’s kingdom if you could bring under the mentorship of Peter and Mary Jean Kopp the five people above.  Now close your eyes and imagine those five people becoming the fingers of a hand.  And imagine if there were three dozen children nestled in the palm of this hand- watching this hand at work, learning, growing, living among its fingers. Seated in the palm of this hand, protected by the strength of the God whose hand this is.  Can you see it too?

“Plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11

The night air does smell sweet sometimes doesn’t it?

Adventures and blessings,

PS.  Now it’s my turn to add on…

Please consider attending the Taylor event at Chapel Hill on November 6, after both services.  So many have already given and not actually heard the details of our call!  We will show a 15 minutes video, talk about the mission of New Life Homes, and answer questions.  The kids will be available for questions too, so bring yours!  You can have Craig’s breakfast for a great price between services or join us after the second service and have Tacos!  Whether you have already decided to contribute financially or not … or even somewhere in between … please come.  We would love to share with you this great news! ~Jennifer


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