Thursday, November 7, 2013

When Those Who Have NOTHING Reach OUT to GIVE...



This last week at Girls With Vision, we had to make a new rule.
"If you come drunk or high, you can't work on beads that day.... 
 Tough for us that we even have to go there!"


We EMBRACE and LOVE each lady that comes.... 
Just as she is!
We NEVER demand a change in behavior - 
We only introduce each one to GOD'S abundant GRACE and LOVE - and sit back amazed, as He works in hearts - 
and lives change!


But, the 4 that have been coming "under the influence" have been causing some conflict and struggles within the group.  So now, we have a rule.  "If you come drunk or high, you can't work on beads that day.... 

Shiku is one of the 4.  Actually, her improvement has been incredible!  We have marveled at her growth over these last 2 weeks...  Almost every morning before 8:30, she is at our center, ready for Bible study then bead work.  But, she still has a ways to go!


Read her story here...The day we met Shiku...
  

Yesterday, our "Firm Foundations" Group met - the group that has walked together for almost 3 months now.  They have shared, wept and encouraged each other through hungry days, stories of abuse from a drunk husband, a burnt house, and many more struggles.  And, they have LOVED Shiku - who probably hasn't had a bath in all those months.  

One friend approached Shiku as the meeting started.  She was cold and shaking.  The rains have started - she has no place to sleep!  The bath stall she has been using as a "home" over the last months just gets soaking wet inside with the rain.  And it will be rainy season for some time now!  So, Wednesday morning, Shiku was chilled, wet, hungry and tired.  Before even starting, Mama Wambui bought her something warm to eat.


Shiku's "house" - just a stall from an unfinished bath house.  Her father occupies one, she sleeps in the other.
Shiku's father in his adjoining stall

Then, her friends began to encourage her.  "Shiku, you have to stop drinking completely!  It's time for you to give it up!"  

She looked back at them.  You don't understand!  When we leave here, YOU ALL GO HOME.  You wash your clothes and cook.  Where do you think I go to?  I have NO PLACE!

The group paused.  The truth struck hard.  

Then, one lady after the next began to speak.  We need to find you a home.  One offered a suggestion and they all discussed - deciding on the perfect place for Shiku to live. - A home where the gate is locked at 9pm - so that you can't just stay out late and get into trouble.  Two ladies took the job of finding her a home. 

Because of where she stays now, Shiku does not own anything - it would just be stolen from her little stall.  So, the ladies slowly began to offer.  One will bring a jiko (cooking stove), another offered sheets, another cups and bowls.

I still get goosebumps as I ponder this moment of love and generosity.  
We know these ladies!   
Many of them have come to us in the last week, hungry, desperate. 
 They are not sharing out of their excess!

Once again, I am humbled.   I learn SO MUCH from each of these ladies!  

We are planning a big party within the next few days.  We will burn what is left of the things in Shiku's "stall".  And, we will shower her with blessings that will help her to start a new life.... in a real home... yes, it will be a tin shack - but one that has been filled by love and sacrifice from true friends!

And, her friends all spoke to her - Shiku, we will be watching you!  If we see you with a man, or one of your old friends in your house, we will chase them away!  If we seeing you drinking, we will ask you what you are doing!  

My question for myself and for many of my friends - who the ladies at Girls With Vision would consider very RICH...  Why do we so often think that we need to get ourselves "organized" - to catch up on our own finances - to be in a better place - before we can GIVE?!  If these ladies can give out of their true poverty, how much more can we?

These verses sting a little... what are we saving toward?

1 Timothy 6:17 - 19 

Tell those rich in this world’s wealth to quit being so full of themselves and so obsessed with money, which is here today and gone tomorrow. Tell them to go after God, who piles on all the riches we could ever manage—to do good, to be rich in helping others, to be extravagantly generous. If they do that, they’ll build a treasury that will last, gaining life that is truly life.

 

And, a special note - amazing how GOD works...  just last week, Alyssa Reinoso had her birthday party.  Instead of receiving gifts, she asked her friends to help toward something special at Girls With Vision.  So, Alyssa raised over $300.00!  We will use those funds to supplement what the ladies donate - so that Shiku can settle in and have EVERYTHING she needs! 

Shiku, reading Scriptures to the group