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Home sweet home

We landed uneventfully in Atlanta and are heading back to EVANS. We are grateful for Melissa Ana Courtney for driving to get us and ALL OUR BAGS! (Yay for luggage they arrives on time!)

Thank you for praying for us.  

We love you and we love home! 

Until next year...

KG

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France!

Whew. That was a long flight. But we have safely landed in France!  💚 we have about a three hour layover and then we will be off to ATL.

xxx

KG

 Jack tied his head to the seat 🤣 

Jack tied his head to the seat 🤣 

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Sunday funday!

It’s almost time to board the plane.  

Our morning was quite sweet. We attended ENSW and it felt like home...as it always does. I had a chance to greet the church and share for a few moments about why we come to South Africa. Let it never be said of us, IFC, that when Jesus looks for workers there are few! Let’s put our hands up and be willing to GO...trusting God for the timing. Amen and amen. 

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Jack got to attend EN Kids this morning! He said it was a blast! (Even though it was 94 degrees?!) 

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After a Nando’s lunch, we spent some time this afternoon gathering our things together and readying our house to depart. The beach across the street from us was SLAMMED with folks enjoying the day...and the traffic was AWFUL...

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We are now at the airport waiting to check in...Believing God has positioned us to be shiny even on these eternal flights. ☺️ Would you pray us home? 

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We have had a life changing experience. Yet, we have missed home like crazy! As I said today and the team agrees, “I know who I am and I know where I belong!”

Its time to come home. 💚🇿🇦

KG

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Work hard, play hard!

Well, hey fam! 

Today was a day in Cape Town as mentioned in the blog yesterday. After a drive through traffic, on the opposite side of the road, with a lot of lane changes, funky stop lights and people walking everywhere, WE ARRIVED downtown. After parking in the tightest parking deck ever, we walked to the Green Market and the souvenir shopping (for you all!!) began!  

  “Riding along in my automobile!”

“Riding along in my automobile!”

Bartering and “‘wheelin’ and dealin’” ensued! Some of us are better at it than others. (I am AWFUL at it, in case you’re wondering. Everybody gets almost full payment from me! Grrr.) This team is so ‘others centered’ and spent thoughtful time picking things out for their loved ones and supporters. 

After the market, we walked a bit and found ourselves at The Waterfront for lunch. We even ran into a couple of the pastors from ENSW! That was a surprise treat. We stopped for some fun photo opps:

 

  What a fun team!

What a fun team!

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After being ‘hand to the plow’ all week, it can be difficult to go in to the city to sight see and shop for things. After being in the midst of poverty and lack, it can be difficult to see the excess. But we know one thing is for sure...any soul, whether rich or poor, is dead without Christ. Every soul needs to hear the good news of the gospel. Every soul is valuable to God. This team has ministered this well!

Our day ended with a meal hosted at a Thembalitsha Board members home. We felt so at peace as we rested well together. Pierre and Helena Smith, ENSW pastors and some other friends of the ministry joined us! Take a look at these photos!

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  Jack was dying to jump on this float…so he did.  And it was hilarious.

Jack was dying to jump on this float…so he did. And it was hilarious.

We talked about “trip take aways” tonight in our team meeting. I can’t wait for you to read each persons insight (it’s below)! For me, I honestly can’t say enough good things about this group of our people. They have served, sweat, worked hard, played hard, prayed for others, considered themselves less than others, and all around LOOKED LIKE JESUS. They have made this leader’s job a joy! I absolutely adore being in SA (it’s my second home) and loving on all the people here, whether in manual labor or face to face encouragement. BUT, my take away from this trip has been how very much I have loved this team. I have loved every minute of being with them and watching them shine. Watch out, you IFC peeps, these folks may have come timid or afraid but they are coming back BOLD AS LIONS! God has transformed us, sanctified us, and taught us. What an honor to have been here for “such a time as this”. My heart is full.

Love,

KG

P.S. I will update as we begin traveling home tomorrow. We leave Cape Town at 6pm your time. Layover in Paris and on to ATL!!

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Trip take away at this moment: 

  • Sarah- how important it is to be encouragers, listeners and prayers — not just doers.  

  • Amber- be grateful for where I do serve. I have it so easy at home and it’s not ok to become easily frustrated.  

  • Anjelica- you cant really know what it’s like to love a brother or sister across the earth until you’ve gone. You can’t just look at pictures. You have to GO to see the hope that’s here.  

  • Carla- don’t be so busy that I can’t take time to look up and really see people.  

  • Patti- I’ve been reminded this year how much it means to people here that we come back. I’m blessed to have come so many times.  

  • Don- the power of words. The power of encouragement. Literally speaking life into others. People want to be heard and know they aren’t forgotten. It is powerful to join our prayers with those that are crying out to God.

  • Meredith- I’ve seen SA from a distance for many years but to get to come and have my heart knit here is special. Being here puts faces to ministries. All of this renewed in me the passion to do something in Augusta.  

  • Jack- I’m reminded how important community is and how much we need each other. i.e. even this team, we all have different gifts and strengths/jobs for the trip and thats what makes it family.  

  • Kyle- In our every day to day lives, hospitality and serving others is so important. Encouraging others is so important. Being attentive and seeing people is important. 

  • Aaron- Power in prayer this week was special. I haven’t ever felt and seen fruit like this.  

     

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Paradyskloof!

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Fam!

Ok people! What was Jack doing in the blog “grocery store feet” photo last night with the red broom?! Truth be told...we had a mouse in the kitchen so I was on the counter with Amber avoiding the rodent. Jack, Crocodile Dundee, was positioned to catch the mouse with the broom in a sneak attack. But at that moment he had picked up a rouge earring with the broom and was trying to hand it to me. The halariousness of it all was unmatched. :)

 yep. dang mouse.

yep. dang mouse.

Back to the blog... 

You wondering what the title means?  Well, it means PARADISE CLIFF, but it has become a word that Pastor Jack has adopted to use in every way.  Then he adds all of our names with ‘kloof’ on the end.  Yeah, it’s funny. Anyway…

Today has been simply amazing. We started the morning quietly at the house gathering ourselves for the day. As we have each day, we prayed together and asked Holy Spirit to go with us and fill us up. It’s been a sweet way to start the day.

We divided up today! 💚💚💚

Jack, Anjelica, Aaron, Sarah and myself went to Agape Preschool at EN Zola to love on kids, to do painting, and a larger project of building a cover for their sandbox. (They have to keep certain regulations for sandboxes at the schools so this was aiding in that effort.) Wait until you see the photos of this gorgeous, functional, amazing piece of work designed and executed by Jack!! When the principal of the preschool, who is also our EN pastor’s wife Thabisa, saw the finished product she was undone. She said “This is the best thing that’s happened to me all year!” ☺️

Kyle, Meredith, Patti, Don, Carla and Amber drove over to Stellenbosch and went to a different preschool called Graceland. Meredith was gracious enough to write a synopsis of their day at Graceland (and she is my hero for it!!!): “At Graceland we spent time looking around the property and seeing all the special spaces set up for the children. Elizabeth works hard to ensure the children get everything they need in order to be successful in their future education. It was awesome to hear her story of perseverance, she was taken out of school at 12 years of age and later in life took equivalent to GED and then pursued her university education in early childhood education. Her dedication and heart for the children at Graceland is so very obvious and her joy comes straight from Jesus. For all the work she has been called to here she trusts God. Patti ministered to Elizabeth and gave her a beautiful black pearl necklace to remind her that she too is a pearl of great cost. Jesus gave up everything in order to buy us back from the grips of sin and death. We are his pearls of great cost. We are grateful for this reminder throughout the week.

The children at Graceland are aged 3-5 and we had so much fun playing soccer, jumping on the trampoline, having our hair styled and spending time with the girls and boys here. We also got to hear their beautiful voices sing the South African anthem, “I’m in the Lord’s army,” “zaccheus was a wee little man” and a South African nursery song.

 Graceland is doing a “Tour of Nations” on Sunday to fundraise for the pre-school. Kyle and Don helped transport tables and chairs to support this work. This will bring in significant funds for the school and we are praying that it is everything they have asked for in Jesus name.

Elizabeth and Leon were blessings to both the men and women, and they are a true example of a couple whose hands are on the plow and they’re looking ahead to whatever God has for them. We love Graceland!

We ended our day with dinner at a local restaurant! This team earned every treat and calorie and time of peace at dinner! We enjoy laughing together and conversing...we just love being together! 

Tomorrow we will spend the day in Cape Town and see another part of this precious nation.  

Until then... 

xxx

KG

P.S. Picture captions will tell more of today’s details :) 

 We absolutely love Pastor Linda and his wife, Thabisa. We love EN Zola and Agape Educare!

We absolutely love Pastor Linda and his wife, Thabisa. We love EN Zola and Agape Educare!

The following are A LOT of photos from this project so you can see the progression of this task. Amazing…

The reveal of this project was so special. Thabisa was overwhelmed. Her staff was overwhelmed! They just kept shouting and smiling and thanking God. Isn’t the before and after stunning?

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 We are traveling the world together for Jesus!

We are traveling the world together for Jesus!

 Let us in to play with the kids! :)

Let us in to play with the kids! :)

 Can you find Sarah!? She’s in her happy place! :)

Can you find Sarah!? She’s in her happy place! :)

 …and again.

…and again.

 Hard working girl, this one.

Hard working girl, this one.

 Nap time. This was amazing!

Nap time. This was amazing!

 Anjelica worked in this bathroom tirelessly. BEFORE AND AFTER!! Thabisa was thrilled to have a bright bathroom in her office! Kyle and Jack also changed out light fixtures and fixed the switch so they would actually turn on. What a team!

Anjelica worked in this bathroom tirelessly. BEFORE AND AFTER!! Thabisa was thrilled to have a bright bathroom in her office! Kyle and Jack also changed out light fixtures and fixed the switch so they would actually turn on. What a team!

 Anjelica said that painting the bathroom today was a highlight. She commented on how peaceful it was to have this task :)

Anjelica said that painting the bathroom today was a highlight. She commented on how peaceful it was to have this task :)

 Aaron brightened up this ceiling for the Agape office!

Aaron brightened up this ceiling for the Agape office!

 Graceland has a special place in the hearts of IFC peeps.

Graceland has a special place in the hearts of IFC peeps.

 The reunion between Patti and Elizabeth was 6 people’s JOY and JESUS for the day! They have been friends since the very first IFC trip to SA in 2007. God knits hearts! He has friendship for us!

The reunion between Patti and Elizabeth was 6 people’s JOY and JESUS for the day! They have been friends since the very first IFC trip to SA in 2007. God knits hearts! He has friendship for us!

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 This lady never grows tired of loving on kiddos. We all want to be like her when we grow up!

This lady never grows tired of loving on kiddos. We all want to be like her when we grow up!

 Mr. Kyle is a good dad…all over the world.

Mr. Kyle is a good dad…all over the world.

 Hair salon. Carla and Amber are good sports!

Hair salon. Carla and Amber are good sports!

 I mean seriously, what more elegant up-do could you ask for? Amber is ready to take on the world. :)

I mean seriously, what more elegant up-do could you ask for? Amber is ready to take on the world. :)

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 Mama C.

Mama C.

 “When I Praise Him” dance party!

“When I Praise Him” dance party!

 Don busy at play!

Don busy at play!

 Play with me!!!!!

Play with me!!!!!

 

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What a day!

Family! 

What can we say? Our time here just gets better and better.  Today was no different. :)  The guys and girls were separated today and the pictures will tell the story for the most part! 

  • The guy’s day —

    • Themba Training — painted, repaired desks, arranged furniture, moved industrial sewing machines, and helped prep stuffing for the Themba stuffed animals (cut MOUNDS of scraps out of old wet suits). 

    • Mama Themba — painted, installed an air conditioner unit, repaired a roof, and a few more handyman jobs.  “The site maintenance man was so appreciative of the hard work.  He told us that the work we did today would’ve taken him a month to get done.”

  • The girl’s day —

    • Mama Themba — we were so encouraged by the staff there and hope we were an encouragement to them.  Praying for the mom’s in labor, recovery and coming for a check up was the highlight for our day! 

    • Themba Training — we got to meet a couple of the contracted young people who make the beautiful items you can purchase.  (I bet your loved ones bought something!!!)

Our day ended with John and Rona Miller, Thembalitsha Board Members, coming to our guest house for dinner and sharing many nuggets of truth with us.  You can read about them at www.themillers.bike to see what AMAZING people they are as they love Jesus and spread the word about Thembalitsha. Here are some nuggets that we think you will enjoy:

 “The devil isn’t going for the blood of the lamb, he is going for your testimony. And your testimony is your message to the world!”

“You can not say ‘NO’ to the Lord. If you say ‘NO’, you can’t call Him ‘Lord’.”

“What is in your hand? Whatever is in your hand you can put to use!”

“Enjoy the journey; there will be ups and downs, heat and cold, good and not so good.”

“Be thankful and demonstrate trust. Communicate and persevere.”

“There’s no baby Holy Spirit. There’s no juvenile Holy Spirit. He is.”

“It’s good to know what your strengths are, and it’s good to know what they’re not.”

“As Christians, you are moving thru this place called Earth. You’re destination is heaven. Where you stay here is just hotel rooms.”

“Take time to stop for the one.”

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Funny quotes: 

Kyle asked Marla, Project Director for Themba Training, “Where does South Africa end and the next country begin?” Her gracious response: “At the border.”

When at dinner this evening a few folks were sharing photos of their kids. It’s ONLY happenstance, she says, but SARAH asked Aaron at about this same time “Do you really have a picture of your Xbox on your phone?!”  

(Funny coincidence!)  

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We love y’all.  We have some big projects set for tomorrow!!  We can’t wait to show you the photos and tell you all about it!  For now, enjoy the photos from today and come along this journey with us!

xxx

KG

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 Getting supplies together to pack in to bags. Every mom they see gets a bag of items from Mama Themba.

Getting supplies together to pack in to bags. Every mom they see gets a bag of items from Mama Themba.

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 Bag packing at its finest.

Bag packing at its finest.

 Susie and Lindy, Project Director for Mama Themba, receive a donation from a generous giver.

Susie and Lindy, Project Director for Mama Themba, receive a donation from a generous giver.

 Just wow.

Just wow.

 Lunch!!

Lunch!!

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 Jack drinking his Hulk drink. Anjelica too.

Jack drinking his Hulk drink. Anjelica too.

 Lunch time between projects. We are so thankful for Krissy.

Lunch time between projects. We are so thankful for Krissy.

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 Themba Training!

Themba Training!

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 James and John Erwin, transplants from Texas! Also, Susie’s twin boys! :)

James and John Erwin, transplants from Texas! Also, Susie’s twin boys! :)

 Aaron is allergic to Earth. Just sayin’. And I’m not joking.

Aaron is allergic to Earth. Just sayin’. And I’m not joking.

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 Precious Themba Training contractors.

Precious Themba Training contractors.

 Themba Training orientation.

Themba Training orientation.

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 food of the sea yumminess!

food of the sea yumminess!

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 John and Jack roasting marshmallows!!

John and Jack roasting marshmallows!!

 dessert!

dessert!

 Cooking her own marshmallows.

Cooking her own marshmallows.

 Dessert was…SMORES!

Dessert was…SMORES!

 Grocery store feet in SA.

Grocery store feet in SA.

 Time with the Millers! (I swear I was listening!! Just downloading photos while I can since it takes 1374 hours!?!?!)

Time with the Millers! (I swear I was listening!! Just downloading photos while I can since it takes 1374 hours!?!?!)

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So much love for today!

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Fam!

I can’t even put in to words how incredible today has been. We spent the morning in Grabouw accompanying the Angels (previously mentioned in a blog post) into the community as they served their patient census.  We are overwhelmed and inspired, challenged and encouraged. I figure that hearing from each person about their township experience is better than hearing from only my words ☺️. So here ya go: 

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Sarah: The angels and everyone at thembacare are so joyful despite the hard, impossible situations surrounding them. They have a trust in God like none other. And the people in the townships are just normal people, doing everyday normal things - washing laundry, feeding babies, laughing, kids playing, kids helping with chores, kids wanting to play with their parent’s phone - it was so different than anything I’d ever experienced but important to see how other people live.

Aaron: The angels are a real blessing to Grabouw.  They are very caring and check on their patients rain or shine!  It was great to pray for those we visited and to see the Angels joyfully interacting with the patients and the patients' friends and family, whom they also examined if needed; it was an inspiring example of real community and others-service.

Patti: Being at Thembacare with the angels is always a highlight of the trip for me. They have become very precious to me and I loved being with them again.  I got a little emotional as they were singing because of the times I’ve shared this experience with them in the past.  I was very blessed to be able to share with them today and let them know how precious they are to our Heavenly Father.  It was a great day! 😊

Meredith: I loved walking with the angels today. As soon as Beauty asked me to jump in to help with blood pressures and blood sugars, I felt totally at home. The voices of the Angels singing made me feel like I was in heaven. It was a beautiful sound. ❤

Kyle: I was amazed at what the angels do on a daily basis in a area that is devastated with disease. They are a blessing to there community and have left a impression on my hart that I will never be forgotten.

Amber: I was overwhelmed with the presence of the Lord as I walked with the angels today. They are truly the hands and feet of Jesus every single day. They are a genuine blessing to their patients and to me! I loved today!!

Don: The ladies at Thembacare have truly earned the name angels. They go into difficult situations with meds and the love of Christ, no one is there cheering them on when the day is rough, but they continue to go trenches of people's   hardship. After a time of teaching, singing, prayers, and gift giving  Thembacare's manager, Taindi, gave the team the blessing that Aaron used to bless the children of Israel. It was a very humbling experience receiving this blessing from one who sacrifices her life daily.

Carla: The Angels that we walked with today looked like Jesus to me. I was so inspired to see them work with their patients with such kindness and care. I loved that they took their time with their patients, asking about their health, families and their lives. Day in and day out they go into to the dark to bring hope. It was such a blessing to be with them today.

Anjelica: The Angels we walked with had so much patience and showed genuine care for the people they went to check on. This is their normal and it is inspiring me to be filled with more grace and mercy towards others. And to not grow weary in the places God calls me.

Jack: I loved seeing how God is sending hope to the seemingly hopeless.  It was such a joy to see people receiving the care and attention they so desperately need.

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I can hardly contain my emotion when I’m with the Angels. Their dedication to the call God has on their life challenges me. I long to be so obedient without delay!  They also lead us in worship this afternoon at the TCG service. Heaven came down!! (BTW, Patti did an INCREDIBLE job teaching today.  Thanks for praying!) 

If our time in the townships wasn’t enough, we had a fabulous time at EN Zola this evening. Pastor Linda and his wife were so grateful for our ministry. Myself, Jack, Meredith, Aaron, Carla, Kyle, Anjelica and Don shared. And the entire team ministered in prayer and prophecy before we left. It was a life changing experience for all of us.  I truly believe a few of us that came to SA timid will return to the USA as BOLD AS LIONS!  My goodness! We haven’t even processed all God has done today. He is so good.  

Thank you for all of your comments and encouragement. You are dear to us.  

Until tomorrow... 

KG

(Thursday holds: serving at MamaThemba and Themba Training!)

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Funny quotes:  

Karla : “Why am I so hungry?  Anjelica: “Because at home it’s ‘eat o’clock’!” 🤣🤣🤣

Karla to Anjelica: "You know I could bite the skin of your elbow and you wouldn't know."

The photos today aren’t in order, necessarily.  Getting them posted to the blog was more importantt that their organization today.  The internet speed here is TURTLE SPEED...

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Manual labor, Meat pies and Megalodons...

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Hiya peeps!!!

First off, it is HOT HOT HOT here! Unseasonably so. (And we hear it’s cold at home!) we are hat wearin’, sunscreen applyin’ folk!  And before I go any further, I have to say how amazing this team is...with many changes and unexpected things thrown their way (even had a missing passport this morning! But it’s found!!!) there hasn’t been any complaint or grumble. 💚

Our day took us into Grabouw to serve at our clinic here in the community. Thandi, Project Manager of ThembaCare Grabouw, orientates our team to the mission and vision of this arm of Thembalitsha. Grabouw has the highest rate of TB in all of Africa. The caregivers (we call them Angels) of this facility help educate and serve the people of this area that are suffering. We are so thrilled to be with them for the next two days.

Angels. Why call them angels? These ladies are the hands and feet of Jesus to this community. They GO INTO to hardest places to serve those that are the overlooked and downtrodden. This paraphrased scripture comes to mind in the leaders of this ministry:

“When I was sick you helped me

When I was hungry you fed me

When I was without, you gave...”

The Angels are light in the darkness, hope to the hopeless and dignity to those discarded. (We will be walking through the communities with them tomorrow!)

Today, we help spruce up this clinic and bring bright spots to a place that has suffered much. Many deaths have happened at this hospice this year. Hope seems in little availability. Except we know it’s not! Bringing a garden and color where the patients can walk and rest is JESUS! He dignifies and SEES all that are His.

Thandi said to us, “I value you coming here and coming back. It’s invaluable.” The impact on this community when someone dies is great. And we get to be a small part of bringing joy today. What an honor.

So specifically, what did we “do”?

  • Freshened up the planting containers (little Minion faces ☺️)

  • Tilled and planted a meditation garden full of flowers, herbs and vegetables (This was not an easy task, mind you! We moved hundreds of lbs. of stone and brick, planted a lot of plants in blistering heat, and avoided heat/sun stroke!)

  • Sealed and painted a roof

  • Encouraged the workers and volunteers

  • Grew closer to Jesus and one another

As always, there are many photos for you to look at and love.  We are so grateful for this opportunity and what God is doing. 

Love, love, love!

xxx

KG 

PS. Pray for us tomorrow as we walk with the Angels in the community and lead the ThembaCare service at 2pm (8am your time!)…Patti is teaching! And, we will be ministering at EN Zola tomorrow evening as well. We so appreciate your prayers.

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 Thandi, Project DIrector of ThembaCare

Thandi, Project DIrector of ThembaCare

 Joyce!! We love Sister Joyce! She is the Nurse Practitioner of ThembaCare.

Joyce!! We love Sister Joyce! She is the Nurse Practitioner of ThembaCare.

 Lunch spot for the day.

Lunch spot for the day.

 moving bricks…assembly lines rock.

moving bricks…assembly lines rock.

 Local hardware store. Loading up!!

Local hardware store. Loading up!!

 BEFORE and AFTER!!! Back breaking work in this heat. We loved every minute of it!

BEFORE and AFTER!!! Back breaking work in this heat. We loved every minute of it!

 This precious team ended today whale watching and taking in the beauty of this land. We go to bed tonight exhausted in the best way. Good night!

This precious team ended today whale watching and taking in the beauty of this land. We go to bed tonight exhausted in the best way. Good night!

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27 Comments

Manic Monday...except not :)

Today was an awesome and full day! We spent the day at The Village of Hope. (And yes, originally we were slated to go to EN Zola this evening but because of some miscommunication we are switching our ministry time to Wednesday evening. When the service was canceled we decided to get ice cream and do more team building! We have earned these calories today...)

What happened at The Village of Hope today?

  • A fence was removed and replaced.

  • Kids were loved on and played with

  • Trees, literal trees, were dragged and stacked to create another layer of property perimeter protection (think tall thicket to prevent anyone from entering the boundary line)

  • Sorted and organized children’s clothes

  • Prayed with and ministered to the VOH employees and volunteers

  • Reconnected and connected with friends

  • Ate sack lunches on a dusty floor and it felt like heaven

  • Spent long moments praying over the VOH and Grabouw

  • Built this team even closer and stronger

  • Laughed until we cried

  • Struggled through the overwhelming emotion in every way when facing this tragic beauty here in SA

  • Got lost and learned new routes through this lovely place

  • Learning to relax more and more and go with the flow

  • Trusting Jesus deeply

  • Marveling at the goodness of God today.  He has been faithful to us. 

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Funny quotes from the day:

Anjelica:  While sitting in a township waiting to go through the locked gate for church, with a dead serious look on her face, surrounded by hundreds of people, Anjelica honestly proclaimed a new truth to us all, “I was about to say I feel like I’m in another country.” Bless it all, Anjelica. You are.

Don: “I thought I said something funny.”

Karla: While tossing sticks on the perimeter pile like a mad woman, “Man, I missed my calling as a javelin thrower.”

And almost everything Kyle says. :)

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Joy, Junk and Jesus moments from the ladies: 

SARAH: My joy was helping two little girls wrap blankets around them to carry Minnie Mouse stuffed animals on their backs like the women carry babies here. My Jesus was praying while we walked at village of hope and praying for the ladies there, especially for one who is pregnant and has about the same due date as I do.

ANJELICA: Junk and Jesus- I was able to encourage a little girl who was crying bc someone hurt her feelings. I talked to her the way I would talk to one of my girls. It also made me sad.

CARLA: Jesus- praying and worshipping on the grounds of VoH. It was a sacred and precious moment for me.

MEREDITH: Jesus-I loved being able to pray for village of hope house moms. Their stories broke my heart and I pray we were able to bring them hope and Jesus.

PATTI: My Joy today was seeing the house moms again and getting to love on them.

AMBER: Jesus- being empowered to pray for a girl living at VOH about being brave and not fearful. All the while...I felt very brave and it was like a prayer for me too. To step out and not be afraid of being bold.

KARLA: My jesus and joy today was prayer walking with Carla and Sarah. And then spending an extended time in prayer with a larger portion of the team for the VOH and all we love about this place. My cup runs over!!! 

***************************** 

What does Tuesday hold for us? Work at ThembaCare Grabouw gardening, painting, repairing and sealing a roof, and loving on all the patients and workers!

We love you all and miss you like crazy!

xxx

KG

Ps. Who is Marcus from the comments? Prater or Maldanado? We all want to know!

 A welcome to the VOH from Tim Afrika, the Director.

A welcome to the VOH from Tim Afrika, the Director.

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 Workin’ that fence.

Workin’ that fence.

 Mere is a BEAST!

Mere is a BEAST!

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 Starting our perimeter barrier.

Starting our perimeter barrier.

 BEFORE…

BEFORE…

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 AFTER! And this fence was LONG and uphill…not for the faint of heart.

AFTER! And this fence was LONG and uphill…not for the faint of heart.

 Longtime VOH volunteer and friend of ours from the UK, Barbara!

Longtime VOH volunteer and friend of ours from the UK, Barbara!

 Jack and KG had a chance to take a walk with Barbara and encourage her.

Jack and KG had a chance to take a walk with Barbara and encourage her.

Time to love on kiddos!!

 Silly Aaron

Silly Aaron

 Sweet Sarah

Sweet Sarah

 Tender Anjelica

Tender Anjelica

 Playful Karla

Playful Karla

 Intentional Kyle and Loving Jack

Intentional Kyle and Loving Jack

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 CG fell in love with this tiny one.

CG fell in love with this tiny one.

 Mama Carla

Mama Carla

 Wise Patti. it is truly an awesome thing to watch Patti Lechner interact with kids of all ages. She is amazing.

Wise Patti. it is truly an awesome thing to watch Patti Lechner interact with kids of all ages. She is amazing.

 Anjelica had some “God moments” with kids today. God SEES us, all of us.

Anjelica had some “God moments” with kids today. God SEES us, all of us.

 Joyful Amber

Joyful Amber

 Mommy Monica is a long time friend of ours. She has been at the VOH since the beginning. We love her.

Mommy Monica is a long time friend of ours. She has been at the VOH since the beginning. We love her.

 These ladies sorted and served :)

These ladies sorted and served :)

 Praying for VOH and Grabouw.

Praying for VOH and Grabouw.

 Other half of prayer team.

Other half of prayer team.

 This was a very powerful moment. All of us ladies got to pray for the house moms on duty today. Even across the ocean, our hearts beat the same. We love to love. And when we hurt, true sisters hurt with you. We hurt together today.

This was a very powerful moment. All of us ladies got to pray for the house moms on duty today. Even across the ocean, our hearts beat the same. We love to love. And when we hurt, true sisters hurt with you. We hurt together today.

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Old photo that didn’t make it last evening:

 ENSW :)

ENSW :)

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Flexibility!

Greetings folks!

Sunday funday! And fun it has been!  (Check out what we have been doing today through the following photos and words…)

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 Trying to figure out where to go! GPS apps are God’s gift to humankind :)

Trying to figure out where to go! GPS apps are God’s gift to humankind :)

We spent time seeing another part of this special nation as we get a sense for the culture and spiritual atmosphere here. We drove to Stellenbosch to spend the morning in this college town. We enjoyed one another’s company and built even deeper relationally as a team. God is doing a special knitting with this group and it’s a joy to be a part.

Because of some unforseen circumstances, we had to move out of the Village of Hope today. We have been relocated to a guest house in Strand (other side of the mountain from Grabouw, adjacent to Somerset West) and have re-settled in! We believe God has His eye and hand on us and we are trusting Him for divine appointments in this location. (We are also grateful for our team cook, Meredith, who is doing amazing and serving with such joy!)

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CHURCH!

Happy to be here.

 Justin teaching powerfully!

Justin teaching powerfully!

One of the highlights of our day was attending church this evening with our Every Nation Somerset West family.  What an overwhelming and inspiring experience to sing praises to our God across the ocean.  (We sure did miss IFC today and spoke of you all day long…wondering how things were going.  We heard wonderful things about God being glorified, the worship being fantastic and Pastor Adrian ministering in power!)  One of the cool things at church was the guest speaker — Justin Gray, Director of Every Nation Music, from Nashville!!  He ministered a timely word about True Worship.  He made one very important point that spoke to us specifically as a team on this journey, and I paraphrase - “…that when we worship in truth we not only have right relationship with God, but also one another”.  Our worship changes us and changes things around us!   

Every evening we end the day with a team meeting going over our “Joy, Junk and Jesus” for the day...sharing what was awesome, tough and inspiring from our day. Tonight you will get to hear from our guys (tomorrow from the ladies ☺️) :

Aaron: My Jesus moment today was walking around with the guys and sharing deeply with them.  

Kyle: My joy was walking around with the guys today and sharing “male camaraderie”. Also the Lord using a brother from Nashville to be used by The Holy Spirit to teach me something about myself. 

Don: My joy was hanging out with the guys! My Jesus moment was watching Meredith cook for the team! She obviously enjoys serving that way and it’s a joy to watch someone serve with JOY! 

Jack: My joy was the car ride, walking around Stellenbosch, and eating together. My Jesus moment today was going to church and being able to relax, be in the presence of the Lord and receive from Him. 

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We sure do love you all!  Until tomorrow… (serving at The Village of Hope and ministering at our EN Church in Zola is what Monday holds for us!!  Pray for Carla, Meredith, Jack, Aaron and Kyle as they prepare to speak their stories tomorrow evening at this service.  We will also pray for and encourage the church members as a team. )

KG

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Here are some extra photos from our day!  (I also plan to drop extra photos into a blog later on in the week that may not have made it to a post.  We know y’all love to look at your loved ones!)

 One of our Thembalitsha connections praying for us after church.

One of our Thembalitsha connections praying for us after church.

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This and that...

Hey fam!

We have had a great day!! You will find photos below that will hopefully help you get a taste of what we experienced today. BUT! Before you get to the photos, read what the team said when asked “What are you expecting this week?”

We love y’all!

xxx

KG

************************************ 

I expect to have a better vision for ministry when I go back home. -Anjelica

I’m expecting to renew relationships, encourage the workers here, and for God to do new things in and through me. -Patti

I expect new/stronger bonds with the team and Jesus and the people who live and work here. -Amber

Clarity on our direction with Thembalitsha. - Don

I am expecting for GOD to present his grace and mercy to me in a way that I would not be expecting. - Kyle

To show kids Jesus and play with them, to get out of my comfort zone, for spiritual renewal and for God to reveal focus and direction for future ministry with kids. - Sarah

I am expectant for building deeper relationships with Jesus, also within the team and with new friends here. - Meredith

I’m expectant to deepen relationships, encourage and love the ministries here in any way that I can, and to be renewed spiritually. - Carla

I'm expecting to see God work in ways that only He can. -  Aaron

I’m expecting to experience joy in this journey as we pour ourselves out for one another and the people of SA. - Jack

I’m expecting God to bond this team in a way that impacts our time in SA and also for future ministry at/thru IFC! - Karla

*************************************

 Heading to breakfast to start our day.  

Heading to breakfast to start our day.  

 The Elgin Valley. We are staying and ministering in this area throughout the week. The juxtaposition of the beauty against the need in this part of the world can be overwhelming.  

The Elgin Valley. We are staying and ministering in this area throughout the week. The juxtaposition of the beauty against the need in this part of the world can be overwhelming.  

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 Tired leaders 🤣 

Tired leaders 🤣 

 The guest house the team is staying in at The Village of Hope.  

The guest house the team is staying in at The Village of Hope.  

 Afternoon reading to prep for our week!  

Afternoon reading to prep for our week!  

 Capturing video of what God is doing here.  

Capturing video of what God is doing here.  

 Showing the current VOH kiddos photos of KG’s kids! Their toddler photos are on the wall and the iPhone holds their current photo. So thankful for this place.  

Showing the current VOH kiddos photos of KG’s kids! Their toddler photos are on the wall and the iPhone holds their current photo. So thankful for this place.  

 Pastor Jack doing what he does best...making kids feel amazing.  

Pastor Jack doing what he does best...making kids feel amazing.  

 Anjelica is a trooper! :) 

Anjelica is a trooper! :) 

 Big spiders aren’t our friends 😭 

Big spiders aren’t our friends 😭 

 Meredith is a beast! Getting her workout in during down time!  

Meredith is a beast! Getting her workout in during down time!  

Dinner time was a time of rich fellowship...and struggling to keep our eyes open...

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 Grocery shopping for the week! 

Grocery shopping for the week! 

 Carla got her bag!!!!! Praise Jesus and thank you for praying!  

Carla got her bag!!!!! Praise Jesus and thank you for praying!  

 So thankful Jack can make fires to keep us warm!  

So thankful Jack can make fires to keep us warm!  

 Ending the day with a team meeting! Sharing our “Joy, Junk and Jesus” moments, discussing our required reading (see next photo) and praying together.     

Ending the day with a team meeting! Sharing our “Joy, Junk and Jesus” moments, discussing our required reading (see next photo) and praying together.  

 

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 Calling home to those we love. Thank God for technology. For real.  

Calling home to those we love. Thank God for technology. For real.  

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We made it!!

After a long 24 hours of travel, we made it to Cape Town! 19+ hours on a plane is quite the test of endurance! ☺️

We have retrieved our bags (minus 1 - pray for it’s arrival!), rented cars (that was a lengthy ordeal in itself) and have settled in to The Village of Hope for the week. We are expectant! 

More than anything, we are honored to have the chance to just BE with people this week and encourage them with the love of God. Projects and tasks will get accomplished but the real work of relationship and loving others is our top priority. As we have been learning at IFC recently, we desire to be the hands and feet of Jesus...to bring peace where there it’s lacking...to walk the walk Jesus has called us to as His children. This week is gonna be good! 

We will be in touch!  

To God be the glory!  

xxx

KG

 

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More photos to come tomorrow!! 

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Safe to Amsterdam

We are safely to Amsterdam and have a 4 hour layover until our long flight to Cape Town! (We will arrive in Cape Town around 3:30pm EST on Friday!) 

All is well.  

xxx

KG

 

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To ATL and thru security...

 ...boarding the plane in about an hour! 

We will land in Amsterdam around midnight EST (but it will be 6am in Amsterdam!!). Pray us thru, fam. 💚

We are honored to be on this journey!  

KG

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Preparing to GO!

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Preparing to GO!

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Our team is leaving Thursday to head to South Africa!! Would you please be praying for us AND follow our journey here on the blog? 

We are excited to serve the Thembalitsha Foundation and encourage our Every Nation family. To God be the glory!

**************************************** 

Amber Smith

Carla Gay

Don Lechner

Aaron Boyd

Kyle Williams

Jack Bailey

Meredith Deas

Sarah Yadon

Patti Lechner

Anjelica Maxwell  

Karla Garrard

 

 

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Safely home!

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We have arrived back to the States! After 27 hours of travel, we are grateful to be back on American soil.

We experienced so much of Jesus. Our prayer is that we will never be the same! Thank you for journeying with us. 

Until next time! Our passports are already ready!  

Karla G  

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 

We heard this amazing poem at church while in South Africa. We wanted to share it with you: 

I am part of the "Fellowship of the Unashamed."

The die has been cast. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I won't look back, let up, slow down, back away, or be still. My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is secure.

I am finished and done with low living, sight walking, small planning, smooth knees, colorless dreams, chintzy giving, and dwarfed goals.

I no longer need pre-eminence, prosperity, position, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I now live by presence, lean by faith, love by patience, lift by prayer, and labor by power. My pace is set, my gait is fast, my goal is Heaven, my road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions few, my Guide reliable, my mission clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, deterred, lured away, turned back, diluted, or delayed.

I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediocrity.

I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I must go until Heaven returns, give until I drop, preach until all know, and work until He comes. And when He comes to get His own, He will have no problem recognizing me.

My colors will be clear.

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The end draws nigh...

Our last day here is drawing to a close. We leave here in a couple hours to head to the airport. We’ve enjoyed church and lunch, grabbed some last minute items from the grocery, our stuff is packed and we are hanging out in our accommodation with the kiddos from VOH. 

The grace is shifting to help our hearts get set for coming back home. We can hardly wait to hug our framily...all of you. 

Our hearts have grown in love for Jesus, South Africa, one another, our precious In Focus Church and every single place our feet stepped to serve Thembalitsha.  

Pray us home, people! We are headed towards ya! 

Karla G 💚🇿🇦💚 

 

 Photo speaks for itself :) 

Photo speaks for itself :) 

 

 What a wonderful morning at ENSW! “We must not be consumed with the anticipation of Christ’s arrival but the thought of it should stir us to zeal and joy.” -Pierre Smith  

What a wonderful morning at ENSW! “We must not be consumed with the anticipation of Christ’s arrival but the thought of it should stir us to zeal and joy.” -Pierre Smith  

 Encouraging and loving on our fellow EN pastors, Pierre and Helena Smith and their daughter, Alika.  

Encouraging and loving on our fellow EN pastors, Pierre and Helena Smith and their daughter, Alika.  

 Friends across the ocean!  

Friends across the ocean!  

 This amazing team loving on the kiddos and resting before we fly.  

This amazing team loving on the kiddos and resting before we fly.  

 Chris and Katrina playing “Keep it in the Air” :) 

Chris and Katrina playing “Keep it in the Air” :) 

 Dani lead a sing along for an hour and a half with aspiring stars!  

Dani lead a sing along for an hour and a half with aspiring stars!  

 Again, “Keep it in the Air” lead by John and Alan.  

Again, “Keep it in the Air” lead by John and Alan.  

 Ms. Irene resting up. She’s been such an amazing team mate and caregiver to all of us.  

Ms. Irene resting up. She’s been such an amazing team mate and caregiver to all of us.  

 The whoopie cushion strikes again!  

The whoopie cushion strikes again!  

 Barbara, long term VOH volunteer from England. We love her!!! 

Barbara, long term VOH volunteer from England. We love her!!! 

 Quote of the day: “The trees look like some serious delicious broccoli.” -Amy Farina, Team Vegetarian  

Quote of the day: “The trees look like some serious delicious broccoli.” -Amy Farina, Team Vegetarian  

Bye bye SA. We adore everything about you.  

xxx

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A day on the other side...

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Family- 

Greetings from our last nite in South Africa! 

We woke today to beautiful weather and a fun day ahead. We traveled in to Cape Town and spent the day seeing sights and buying gifts for all of you! :) (You can “see the sights” along with us in the photos below!)

It was quite different to see this side of this nation after serving all week long. The wealth vs the poverty is, honestly, hard to justify in many of our minds. Yet, we are reminded that at the foot of the cross the ground is level. We are all completely broken and desperate without Him. And in Him, we are all found and fully redeemed. He is the answer to everything, EVERYTHING, we need. 

We love you all. See you soon! 

Karla G

Ps. We are TIRED and some of the photos show it 😂 enjoy!  

 Red Bus Tour fun. We learned a lot about the history of South Africa 🇿🇦  

Red Bus Tour fun. We learned a lot about the history of South Africa 🇿🇦  

 Red Bus Tour moments! 

Red Bus Tour moments! 

 A stop at Table Mountain.  

A stop at Table Mountain.  

 Oh, the sites!  

Oh, the sites!  

 The Green Market and sites around town.  

The Green Market and sites around town.  

 Sleepers caught on camera.     

Sleepers caught on camera.  

 

Church tomorrow morning and then an afternoon at Village of Hope! We fly out at 12:40am here/6:40pm Sunday evening. Pray for us!

💚 

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We are a grateful people!

Family— 

It has been a day for the books for all of us. All of the pieces and vision of this Thembalitsha “puzzle” have fallen in place today. ThembaCare, Educare, Village of Hope, School of Hope, MamaThemba, Themba Training— everything is connected and impacts the other projects. The vision to reach this nation through community development to restore people to a place of self reliance is seen so beautifully in the outworking of each project. 

We have had such a blessed journey here. We have participated in all Thembalitsha projects and we have loved it all.

 The joy of the Lord has literally been our strength. 

Today brings an end to our serving the Thembalitsha projects, for the most part. (Hanging out with the VOH kids is still a possibility this weekend!) Tomorrow will be a sight seeing and “get treats for our supporters/family/friends” day! We so enjoy just being together and bringing the gospel of peace to this nation. We can’t wait to see more. 

Enjoy the photos and comments! You can expect the “cheese cutter” to be revealed AND a couple precious videos. 

Lastly, please pray for us. Pray for our hearts. Pray for vision, wisdom and discernment. We have seen a lot. Our hearts long for home at the same time they are broken for this nation.  

We love you! 

Karla G

 Graceland—there you are!!  

Graceland—there you are!!  

 Americans being Americans 😂 and the precious kiddos of Graceland.  

Americans being Americans 😂 and the precious kiddos of Graceland.  

 Elizabeth, Graceland principle, shares with the team.  

Elizabeth, Graceland principle, shares with the team.  

 Graceland kids  

Graceland kids  

 More of Graceland  

More of Graceland  

 Graceland goodness  

Graceland goodness  

 Mandy sacrificing her hair! 😂 

Mandy sacrificing her hair! 😂 

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 Dena and Karla had the chance to go to ThembaCare today for a Hospice Open House. we enjoyed seeing the faces of many that we love. Only downside? Very windy and very cold for us!

Dena and Karla had the chance to go to ThembaCare today for a Hospice Open House. we enjoyed seeing the faces of many that we love. Only downside? Very windy and very cold for us!

 School of Hope visit. Always such a powerful time to see what the kids do from learning to plant flowers, sport, academia, and more.  

School of Hope visit. Always such a powerful time to see what the kids do from learning to plant flowers, sport, academia, and more.  

 A windy spot for a photo shoot! Did I mention it was windy?  

A windy spot for a photo shoot! Did I mention it was windy?  

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 we are all feeling the love ❤️  

we are all feeling the love ❤️  

 evening playtime with the VOH kids. Anyone spot a cutie baby who once lived in SA?! 😉 

evening playtime with the VOH kids. Anyone spot a cutie baby who once lived in SA?! 😉 

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Our thoughts for today:

Kayla- The hearts of the house moms and workers show me Jesus. It’s selfless service.

Dena- it’s been quite a long day :) my joy was connecting with an old friend and seeing God’s goodness in her life.

Irene- the nature and beauty here points to God. Yet it contrasts so much with the poverty it surrounds.

Joe- joy for me is Graceland! The junk is also Graceland in hearing the abuse many of those kids suffer through. I just love it there! I could have stayed a bit longer...like about 12 days! 

Amy- this team looks like James to me. And James looks like Jesus to me...because he takes care of me. Thank you for loving me and helping me through!

Dani- my joy was seeing the School of Hope. I look forward to seeing how I can go home and help out. My Jesus was seeing the principal today—his love for the kids is so moving. He’s such a father to them.

Stephen- I absolutely love Graceland! It’s been on my heart since the last time I left here!! I’m so glad we got to visit. Seeing all the guys play with the kiddos was awesome.

Mandy- my junk is my allergies! They need to calm down. My joy is the kids!!! Seeing them sing and behave and play and GO was so awesome.

Chastity- my joy was Graceland today! (School of Hope too!) Seeing the kids jump on the guys was a lot of fun for me. My Jesus moment has been the entire week!

Katrina- my junk is being so cold all week long! My joy and Jesus was being at Graceland today. Running and jumping with the kids...giving the kids a few hairstyles...and more! It was fun and so inspiring.

Chris- my joy was Graceland and School of Hope for sure. All of the Thembalitsha workers put so much in to their jobs and have a glow about them...the out their all in what they do. They are always smiling. I want to be like that. I want to live like that.

CJ- I opened a letter today from KK—and she is my joy :) So that was my joy and my Jesus! The fact that my children know Jesus is amazin’. Also, being with the kids at VOH tonight was awesome. There was one little boy I got to sit with after all the little ones went to bed. Just sitting and hanging out with him was so awesome.

Alan— my joy was Graceland. The kids wrapping their arms and legs and everything else around me was so awesome :) The kids looked happy! They are doing a good thing at Graceland. A real good thing.

John— my joy today was seeing how everyone is putting the pieces together. From MamaThemba to Village of Hope to Educare to ThembaCare to School of Hope...it is all connected and the vision is coming to fruition. My Jesus is seeing how everyone prefers each other. This team is just amazing.

••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 

 And the culprit is??!! :) It’s what made it even more funny.  

And the culprit is??!! :) It’s what made it even more funny.  

:) we love y’all!!  

Until tomorrow... 

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Whew! Quite the busy day...

Family!! What. A. Day. So very special. We captured a lot of it in pictures for you. 

Jesus has been near to us...and we sense His presence with every step. 

I cant express how thankful we are to hear from you in the comments. We read them together in the evening...and as tears flow, we feel the bond across the ocean strengthen as we share this journey with you.  

There’s no place like home. USA and SA. We are forever changed and wrecked for this place. 

We love you! 

-KG

ps. The ladies were out all morning which left the guys to take photos themselves. Yeah. 

 

 Our morning started early! A trip over the mountain to Somerset West.  

Our morning started early! A trip over the mountain to Somerset West.  

 A reminder of God’s promises on the way in to town! 

A reminder of God’s promises on the way in to town! 

 Time at MamaThemba for the ladies.  

Time at MamaThemba for the ladies.  

 The ladies had the opportunity to serve MamaThemba this morning. A visit to the local hospital to pray for, love on and gift the mothers as they labored made a major impact on the ladies.  The doctor in charge of the unit had a powerful message to speak to us:     “We have the tendency to think that if we can’t see our impact that we have not done enough. However if you change the life of one person you’ve done enough.”

The ladies had the opportunity to serve MamaThemba this morning. A visit to the local hospital to pray for, love on and gift the mothers as they labored made a major impact on the ladies.  The doctor in charge of the unit had a powerful message to speak to us: 

“We have the tendency to think that if we can’t see our impact that we have not done enough. However if you change the life of one person you’ve done enough.”

 Helping Lindy, project manager for MamaThemba, get the bags ready for next week!  

Helping Lindy, project manager for MamaThemba, get the bags ready for next week!  

 Finishing up the paint projects at Educare!  

Finishing up the paint projects at Educare!  

 Amy, Chas, Katrina and Karla channeling their inner child.  

Amy, Chas, Katrina and Karla channeling their inner child.  

 It was windy and chilly...and then hot! But fun was had by all. :)

It was windy and chilly...and then hot! But fun was had by all. :)

 Amy worked quite hard on this project! Sanding and painting...sanding and painting.  

Amy worked quite hard on this project! Sanding and painting...sanding and painting.  

 Decorating the in patient unit at ThembaCare. Good job heading this up , Dani! 

Decorating the in patient unit at ThembaCare. Good job heading this up , Dani! 

 Finishing up the painting at VOH! Go team go! 

Finishing up the painting at VOH! Go team go! 

 Let there be light!! Giving this Educare electricity and shining the light of Jesus!  

Let there be light!! Giving this Educare electricity and shining the light of Jesus!  

 Ministering a message to the kids about their identity in Christ...and then giving them a treat! (See video below)  

Ministering a message to the kids about their identity in Christ...and then giving them a treat! (See video below)  

 Laundry is fun here! 

Laundry is fun here! 

 Braii (SA word for BBQ/cookout) with the VOH family.  

Braii (SA word for BBQ/cookout) with the VOH family.  

 Sharing our “highs and lows”  with the team from VOH. What a very special time! Here are some of our comments from the sharing:  Building relationally with all that we have encountered.  It’s important what thembalitsha is doing. You try to reach the kids when they’re little so they don’t end up with the struggle as an adult. Seeing they up front this week has been powerful.   It’s a miracle to be here. Being a part of this process has changed my perspective on a lot.   The light of Jesus is in these people.  The only low right now is thinking of the ride to the airport two nights from now. Until then, I’m happy!  This trip is like a European Buffett! All lush and delicious and full of the best items.  It’s been an eye opening week. Seeing living conditions and such are a low. But seeing things like that help change your perspective.  Thembalitsha is a high!!!  It’s hard to put one high over another, but I can say this...there’s nothing that compares to Thembalitsha. I’ve never seen anything like this.  It’s beautiful to see how everyone works together here.  This place has my heart. This experience has changed me.

Sharing our “highs and lows”  with the team from VOH. What a very special time! Here are some of our comments from the sharing:

Building relationally with all that we have encountered.

It’s important what thembalitsha is doing. You try to reach the kids when they’re little so they don’t end up with the struggle as an adult. Seeing they up front this week has been powerful. 

It’s a miracle to be here. Being a part of this process has changed my perspective on a lot. 

The light of Jesus is in these people.

The only low right now is thinking of the ride to the airport two nights from now. Until then, I’m happy!

This trip is like a European Buffett! All lush and delicious and full of the best items.

It’s been an eye opening week. Seeing living conditions and such are a low. But seeing things like that help change your perspective.

Thembalitsha is a high!!!

It’s hard to put one high over another, but I can say this...there’s nothing that compares to Thembalitsha. I’ve never seen anything like this.

It’s beautiful to see how everyone works together here.

This place has my heart. This experience has changed me.

 Evening shenanigans! And Joe serving selflessly by cleaning the floor!     •••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 

Evening shenanigans! And Joe serving selflessly by cleaning the floor!

 

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 Can anyone guess what actually happened in the funny video from last night??!!  (Hint in the photo above.)

Can anyone guess what actually happened in the funny video from last night??!!  (Hint in the photo above.)

Hmmmmm.....answer revealed in tomorrow evenings blog post! 😜 

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