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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

A Respectfully Somber Kind of a Day

A Respectfully Somber Kind of a Day

 By Lisa Sales


Carlos and I separated from the team, with Tabitha as interpreter, and set out to a village to install a well and minister to the women and children.  I prayed as we drove out to the village, “Lord, you know me.  I like to be a part of a team.  I’ll encourage Lori as she dances with the women or help Christine as she organizes the children coloring, or assist Elaine as she teaches the women to sew.  I don’t know how I’ll manage all of that alone. Show me what this village needs.”
This village was different.  No greeting of song and dance from the women and no playing children today. There was a funeral yesterday and the village was to remain respectfully, somber.
Tabitha and I sat where we could watch the women work, hoping a few might get a chance to visit.  A kind women suggested we sit on the front porch of one of the village homes.
Then, without a plan or a program, women started to gather and they seemed to want to talk. Tabitha, our Reaching the Hungry Partner, interpreted while we talked about the funeral the day before, what happens after death, what are their hopes, are they afraid.  “I have no doubt I’m going to heaven when I die.  Do you want to know how I can be so sure?”  The women listened attentively as I explained God’s plan of salvation for them and they eagerly agreed to pray with me. After the prayer the mood changed instantly and they were obviously in no hurry to leave. So I asked… “Are you curious about Americans? You can ask me anything!”  We talked for hours. We talked about the expected age of marriage, what women look for in a husband, what women do if their husband leaves and what women do if they can’t find a husband.  My favorite question came from a beautiful women who asked where my husband was, she said she was going to try to take him.  When I told her she couldn’t have him, she asked if we could share.  Everyone had a great laugh at that, even though I suspect her question was a real one.
The next day our whole team came back to that village to finish the well and play with the children and color with the women.  Today we had our time of singing and dancing!  The 30 women that prayed with me the day before gave the Angels in Heaven something to sing and dance about, they just didn’t know it.

The Lord knew I needed, “a respectfully, somber” kind of a day. The Lord knows us.   He graciously and lovingly stretches us and even uses us when we’re willing.  Please prayerfully consider going with us on a Reaching the Hungry Trip.  You won’t regret it, your life may be transformed forever.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Partnering In The Philippines



Contact Carlos@Reachingthehungry.org (760) 523-0777 if you have sometime to serve in our RtH Warehouse in Escondido, CA. 

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Witchcraft to Cult to Eternal Life with Christ


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 Nicaragua Team - March 2017     
RtH Team hits the streets of Diriomo, Nicaragua to reclaim the community
for Christ. God used these faithful warriors to lead hundreds to Christ
and to help launch a new church! 
Amazing Week 
Jose has been a taxi driver for over 30 years. As he shared the history of Diriomo, I can see the sadness in his eyes. He recounted what it was like growing up in a city known for black magic and witchcraft. He said, "We just got caught up in it. As a teen I went deeper and deeper into spells, sacrifices, and abuse. I watched the way this darkness changed my city into one of  prostitution, drugs, and corruption.  About 30 years ago hundreds of Americans came and shared their testimonies of God. Many of us grabbed onto the hope they gave us and were delivered and saved  from the depths of hell.

As we continued to talk with Jose and share Scripture with him we begin to hear discrepancies in his beliefs about Christianity.  He was confused as to why we placed such emphasis on Scripture.  By the time we read Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death and the free gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."  Jose was weeping. He said, "Now I understand the Truth.  I haven't been a Christian these past 30 years, I have been involved with a Cult."  We lead Jose in a simple life changing prayer that day. We believe he's going to be instrumental in reaching out to his friends who have been similarly deceived. 

Each day our team divided into 6 smaller teams. Two Americans and a Nicaraguan  translator.  We canvased hundreds of homes sharing the Gospel and we were led to pray with many.  Several evenings we hosted outreaches to bless the children and we saw a huge number of children respond to the Gospel.  The people of Diriomo were so receptive!  Each evening, the debrief time sounded like a chapter out of the New Testament, conversions, healings, dangerous adventures and divine appointments!   

Thank you for your prayers... your prayers paved the way for our team! Now, let's pray together for the church launching team as they follow-up on all those that gave their lives to Christ.   And, please pray for our friend Jose.  Pray that the Lord will use this 62 year old new believer to reclaim his city for Christ!   

Pastor Carlos Sales
Reaching the Hungry
www.reachingthehungry.org

(760) 523-0777  


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Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Birth Story - Strength By Gracie Sales


Slender, quiet, and composed she labored. As I checked the baby's heart beat the scar on her abdomen was unmistakable. It was large, taking up a long stripe from her lower chest to a few inches under her belly button. You could see the places the stitches used to be and how huge the wound must have been. When she was only 8 years old her brother was playing with a gun and accidentally shot her in her stomach. What pain she must have been in. I wondered how that compared to the pain she felt in her stomach now. She labored for over 25 hours and at 22 years old she had such strength and self control that I have never seen in a first time mom before. She silently cried at times but that was one of the only signs that she was in pain up until the last 15 minutes where she proved her strength even more. She held onto me as we both squatted on the floor and together through lots of blood, sweat, and tears guided her baby out. I wish I had a picture of her as I handed baby Kenji to her as she was still squatting there next to the bed. Pure exhaustion and exhilarating relief as she embraced her baby.
Baby Kenji you are blessed. You have been born to a fighter, a strong strong momma who already adores you. I pray you will know this strength as you grow and will know where it comes from. I pray that the Lord's strength will continuously be made known in your times of weakness. 

Sunday, February 12, 2017

STEP UP Basketball Outreach in The Philippines

Reaching the Hungry was able to donate these jerseys for this awesome ministry in Davao City, Philippines where Gracie Sales our Midwife Missionary is serving. Check it out!


Agdao Basketball Outreach new shirts 9 Feb 2017
This weeks basketball outreach to Agdao was another full house with over 100 kids attending and super fun as we were able to show the kids the new clothing donated! Its such an honour to be able to partner with folks from across the USA and Europe that enables us to reach these children with the gospel and discipleship every week. Thank you to all our friends, partners and supporters! #basketball #ministry #agdao #davaocity #philippines
Posted by STEP UP Basketball on Sunday, February 12, 2017

Monday, January 23, 2017

2016 Year in Review - By Grace Sales

Jan7.jpgWell, here I am in the final stretch of my commitment here in the Philippines. I can hardly believe I have been here for two years now. 2016 was one of the most challenging years of my life: physically, spiritually, and emotionally. Since being here in Davao I have been at over 150 births, hundreds of prenatals, and spent countless hours reading and studying midwifery books.


2016 has been full of surprises, here are a some highlights:
January
I welcomed babies and a visit from my parents and brother Chase :)

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February
I got to welcome my friend’s baby and spent Valentine’s day with big brothers and my roommate Emily <3

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March
I got to visit home for the month where I enjoyed cooler weather, lots of “Chase hugs”, and a ‘Birth Without Fear’ conference with my momma.

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April / May
I was back in the Philippines with this wonderful group of girls and meeting new patients and babies. Throughout April and May we had many power outages sometimes lasting for a majority of the day.
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We drank lots of anything we could find that was cold and tried to stay out of the house as much as possible as no power also meant no water.
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June
June brought more birth room shifts and some farewells as friends returned to the states.

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July
I continued to learn and grow in my care for my patients and I celebrated the 1 year anniversary of my first catch with flowers from a “secret admirer.”  ;)

August
I got to work a crazy busy shift with my roommates and the month wouldn’t be complete in the life of a midwife of course without working a few papsmear clinics ;P
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September
I was able to take a couple weeks to visit home for some much needed rest and filling up from my family. I also got to spend some quality time with my secret admirer.  ;)

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October
I was back to the Philippines and busier than ever with babies popping out left
and right and finding creative ways to practice neonatal resuscitation.

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November
I was busy with more babies, a trip to ER and week of the flu w/bad asthma, and visiting with a patient who had a stillbirth.
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We also said goodbye to more friends who finished their commitments here and are moving on to obtain their midwifery licences.


December
I celebrated my final Christmas in Davao with my lovely roomies, worked a night shift with my favorite classmates, and celebrated my 25th birthday.
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The Lord has blessed me tremendously in 2016, and I wouldn’t be able to be here serving the women in Davao without your support. Thank you all who have generously given to support my ministry and who have faithfully prayed through the storms with me this past year. I am eagerly looking forward to this new year and all the changes it has in store.


PRAYER REQUESTS
Here are some changes coming up in 2017, and some prayer requests that I’d like to ask you to pray with me:


  • Please pray as I finish my last 6 months here in the Philippines:
    • I have a lot of studying and midwifery assignments to finish up before I can begin my application in the US for my midwifery license.
    • Please pray for the patients the Lord brings my way that they would all be ones who need me, and whom I need as well to further my experience and growth as a midwife.
    • Please pray over my relationships with the girls who I study with and live with as we have all become very close over the last 2 years, and the transition will be hard for us. Pray that the Lord blesses our last few months together!


  • Please pray as I begin my transition back to North America:
    • In June, I will begin my goodbyes here in the Philippines.
    • Re-entry back into the US has always been hard for me in the past even when I’ve only gone on short trips. I usually struggle with feeling confused, out of place, and alone in a 1st world country after experiencing life outside North America.
    • After living as a missionary, fully funded by the support of my fellow Believers and church body, I will be entering back into a fast paced society as a 25 year old with no money, and moving back into my parents house. Please pray for opportunities and blessings as the Lord directs this next season.


  • Please pray with me for what lies ahead with my ministry:
    • Midwifery as my ministry isn’t ending here. As I have expressed before my opportunity to serve in the Philippines is a platform to further prepare me for the long term missions work I feel the Lord calling me to. After, I leave Davao I plan to go up to WA state for the month of July to gain further experience in midwifery, and meet requirements for applying for National Midwifery Cert.  After that, I will return to San Diego hopefully to take a couple classes at the community college to comply with CA state licensing, and my prayer is to have met all my requirements, and write my midwifery board exam by fall/winter of 2017.
    • Please pray with me for all the requirements, and the exam for licensing that I would be able to meet them and pass, and become licensed as a midwife by the end of this year!
    • Please pray with me as the Lord directs me further past my licensing as a midwife. How long to rest and recoup near family and where to serve next?