Friday, February 27, 2009

I Finished It!


I just finished an online course in grantwritng. I took it in hopes to someday write a grant that would be awarded to Lawra Methodist Orphanage in Lawra, Ghana. It breaks my heart that these kids don't even have fresh meat, fresh fruit or fresh vegetables to eat. They live a VERY modest lifestyle because there is no money for extra clothes, shoes, toys, etc. At times there isn't even money for the necessities like dried fish or rice or school supplies. So, my prayer is that someday, they will have more than enough, that their cups will be overflowing!

To learn more about the orphanage, check out my web site at www.suekolljeski.com

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Seasons of Life


Seasons of life...I've seen so many of them lately. I have been invited to a baby shower. I went to a wedding. Friends of mine have died. Others have had surgery, some doing well, others having a harder time. New neighbors are moving in.

As I prepare to travel to Ghana, I wonder how different life will be when I return. Life is always different, for one cannot be the same person after experiencing the joys and sorrows of life in a poverty stricken area. But, I wonder...who will be married when I return? Who will have died? Who might be expecting a child? Who will be preparing to move?

Our lives are always in the midst of change. There is only One who stays the same, no matter what season of life we are in at the moment. Scripture says, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever."

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Hope


hope verb to wish for something with the expectation of its fulfillment; to have confidence, trust
-The Free Online Dictionary


Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and
certain of what we do not see.
-Hebrews 11:1

Friday, February 20, 2009

Teenage Friends


I just returned from having lunch with two teenage friends. I almost didn't go because I had "stuff to do." I am so glad I went. I feel so privileged to have teenagers in my life that aren't embarrassed to be seen in public with a 55 year old woman. I did a couple of errands with them in addition to eating out. I am so glad I went. They keep me young. And, in some small way, I am impacting their lives. One of these two - the boy - even called me up on Saturday to wish me "Happy Valentine's Day!" How sweet is that?


Also this week I had the opportunity to shop with another teenager. I needed something for my trip to Ghana and needed her input. We stopped at three stores to find the best item, then went to Starbucks. It was such a good couple of hours.


So often I tend to stay home by myself. Once I'm out, I'm ok, but it's getting out that's hard. Maybe it's because right now it's so cold out. Maybe it's because I travel so much I like to stay home when I can. The problem comes when I don't go out to be among friends for more than a week or so. Then, depression can set in. I tend to sleep too much at those times, and shun others.


That's not how God made us. God made us to be relational beings. And, even though it might be hard to step outside some days, I'm always grateful I did. So, to my "Favorite Four Teenages"...keep calling!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Psalm 62:11

"Stregnth comes straight from God."
Psalm 62:11 The Message

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Grantwriting Class


I am taking an on line grantwriting class. It is my hope that I will be able to use what I learn to find some funding for the orphanage that I will be working with in Ghana. As I read and study, the more I realize what I don't know. The Ghanaian culture is so different than ours. I doubt if this little orphanage has a mission statement or a list of goals and objectives. They only have 3 paid workers who spend their time taking care of the kids. Right now, their goal is to make sure there is food and clothing and clean water.I return to this orphanage in a month. I'll try to find out the information I need. I'll talk with people, ask lots of questions and see where it leads. Maybe there will be an opportunity to fine tune some of these items that would be needed if I ever write a grant. Money for food, clothing, electricity and worker's salaries is so desperately needed. Before they are taught to "fish for themselves" they need the basics of life. I pray that I may be used to help make this happen.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Prophecy?

About 12 years ago, a dear friend of mine gave me a Scripture verse that was matted and framed. It was Jer. 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, Plans to give you hope and a future." I clung to that verse for quite a long time.

Yesterday, while working on a project for work, I needed that verse. But, I was being lazy and didn't want to look it up. So, I took the framed verse off the wall and copied it. As I did, something struck me that was totally amazing. The background of that verse is an old world type map. And, the part of the world depicted was Africa! Was God beginning to prepare me for something 12 years later? I have to believe He was in a very quiet consistent way.

I wish my friend were alive so I could share this with her. I had to settle for calling her daughter instead. We were both amazed at God's plan and how it is unfolding.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Who Holds Your Future?

I live in western Pennsylvania where Puxsutauny Phil is a hero. He is a much loved groundhog whose sole purpose in life is to do a yearly weather forecast on February 2nd. People gather around his groundhog hole, some many party, but all want to know the future of the weather.

I have to admit, I like the folk lore of Phil although I don't trust him with my future. When I was young, if I was told if Phil saw his shadow there would be six more weeks of winter. If he didn't, there would be 42 days of winter. What's the difference? Phil really can't forcast the weather. I know the One who made the sun go still, the One who calmed the storms and the One who caused the sun to go backwards.

Phil is a legend. He might be correct in his forcast, he might not be correct. But, you can always trust the Lord God Almighty. He is always right, not only in dealings with nature, but in all the ins and outs of our lives. He is the One to trust for the future - not a groundhog!