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Saturday, May 24, 2014

Hollywood inspires at 30,000 feet

While crossing the Atlantic Ocean this past Monday I was looking for a movie to watch.  I was thinking a romantic comedy would work but despite the plethora of options I didn't find anything in that genre as I began my search through what seemed like a hundred movie options.  By the time I got to movies starting with "F" A Few Good Men seemed like an acceptable option.  It had been years since I'd seen it.

I bet that for many movie goers the favorite scene in this movie is Tom Cruise's character getting Jack Nicholson's character to explode and confess that he ordered the Code Red on Willy Santiago, a Marine who wasn't quite keeping up.  That's definitely a 'rewinder.'

But the scene that keeps playing over in my mind is when Downey, one of the accused, is asking his fellow Marine, "What did we do wrong?  We did nothing wrong!"  And Dawson explains,  "Yeah we did.  We were supposed to fight for people who couldn't fight for themselves.  We were supposed to fight for Willy."

In April Adhanom sent this report from South Sudan, "In Akot my friends tell me that life has become meaningless due to fear from the armed people and possible attack from one of two neighboring tribes."   

When I think of Willy Santiago in A Few Good Men I'm reminded of the many people in the world today who can't fight for themselves and are suffering because of poor governance, ethnic hatred, religious persecution, and the list goes on and on.  Let's fight for the Willy's of this world who are physically weak, bullied, sexually abused, unjustly treated, and exploited.  


One of the best ways we can fight for the Willy's of this world is by praying for them.  By praying against injustice and hatred.  By asking God to use us.  Learn about prayer for transformation with Philip Renfroe (click on link for May 4-10) as he shares in WGM's Concert of Prayer.  

South Sudan Update ~
  • Adhanom was able to spend 2 1/2 months in South Sudan before returning to Kenya for R&R and to reconnect with his family.  During his time in South Sudan the country experienced continued fighting. Real peace is going to take a lot of prayer and changed attitudes. 
  • The people of East Rumbek County are busy planting their crops - a very good sign indeed! Pray that they will be so busy tending their crops that they will not be interested in fighting.
  • Despite the insecurity and daily fear men and women who WGM has had the privilege to connect with continue to implement and use what they have learned through trainings on Community Health Evangelism (CHE) and Biblical Orality.   
  • Because of the current insecurity we have not been able to hold surgery or cataract clinics this year.  It's still our hope that in the 2nd half of the year we will be able to send medical teams from Tenwek Hospital to bring healing and hope.  
  • Cholera outbreak:  So far 14 people have died and 395 are affected so far.  With the rainy season starting there is significant potential for cholera to spread throughout the newly created IDP (internally displaced people) camps.
  • The devastating conflict has left thousands of families facing hunger and under-nutrition. The UN has warned that more than a third of South Sudan’s population, or four million people, will be on the brink of starvation by the end of 2014 if urgent action is not taken.
I feel blessed that so many of you have made a commitment to pray for me and my ministry at least one day a week!   Welcome to all new prayer champions!  You will find updated answers to prayer and requests throughout my blogs and in the "Pray" sidebar.  Here is an excellent prayer for South Sudan - this can be used in your personal devotions or in church services to help you lift up the people of South Sudan.

Now you may be wondering why I was flying over the Atlantic!  I just returned from a trip to Greece and Spain.  In Greece I attended a Medical Continuing Education Conference targeting medical missionaries from Africa and the Middle East.  I thoroughly enjoyed the sessions for those involved in Community Health.  But more than that I enjoyed the chance to catch up with many friends and former colleagues from Tenwek Hospital . . . . like Beth White and Carol Spears . . . .




as well as meet new friends, and friends-of-friends.


A mutual friend wondered if the Jansen's, who work in Malawi, and I might be in the same place as he heard that we were both attending a conference in Greece.  

The education was stimulating, the networking rewarding, but the take-home message for me of this time in Greece is that God is still using the avenue of medical ministries and community health to build His Kingdom!

From Greece I flew to Spain to meet some of WGM's newer missionaries serving with the Missionary Disciple program.  After only a skype introduction earlier this year I was able to meet Nathan and Kenzie Vitatoe and their 2 adorable little girls.  They are working with an inter-cultural and inter-organizational team with outreach to immigrants from North Africa.



I'm still processing all that I saw and learned.  I was able to observe several English classes for children and enjoyed getting to spend time with their team.

Now that I've had a few days at home to do a few loads of laundry and get over jet-lag I'm headed south to Argentina for a week.  There I'll visit with veteran WGM missionaries, Don and Glenda Moon, who are involved in a Missionary Training School that sends Latin American's to serve some of the least-reached peoples in Asia, Africa, and the Middle-East.  Current trends show that missionary sending countries are moving to the countries of the Southern hemisphere.  I'm excited and intrigued to learn more about this ministry. 

As I wrote in my last post God is moving in my heart - letting me see into His heart a bit more.  Please continue to pray with me for the ministry in South Sudan during the coming days and months and pray for real peace as the country grapples with broken relationships.  Pray too that God will continue to lead me and show me more of Himself each day.  

What movie is inspiring you these days?  

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