My beautiful sister and her husband Dave are finally here. It so great to have a full house and people to share my days with. Angie is playing Aunty Angie most days and babysitting little Charlotte when I'm at work. Dave has been working with John concreting at the children's home and helping with the water deliveries. The other night at worship it was so good seeing Angie and Dave in amongst all the kids. It is such a blessing to have them here to help us and Destiny Rescue! Now time just needs to slow down, because I know it will seem like as soon as I blink they all be leaving to return back to Australia.
Our vegetable garden is going amazingly. We ate our first harvest of rocket today in our salad, and most of our other vegetables are growing well. Our zucchini vine in particular appears to be on steroids and has taken over the garden. Its one of my favourite times of day when Charlotte, Angie and I go into the garden, do the daily weeding and then sit on the bench and just look at all the greenery and new growth. Its so relaxing and the beauty of it takes my breath away.
Our little family and future farm has had a thermomix generously donated to us by family and friends back home. It has made our kitchen a much "funner" place, and we are starting to experiment with things like chutney, hot sauce, relish, sauces, mayonnaise, mustards, jams, pickles and stock pastes. Hopefully one day The Little Farm Thailand will have a product range available in Chiang Rai. We are even in the process of designing a logo to go on the jars (recycled of course!).
John's fish farm is going well. He has about 500 fish in a pond nearby. He only has one problem - he can't get the adult fish out! None of them will take his bait and when he threw the net into the pond there were so many fish in the net he couldn't pull it in! Sorry John, but I just had to laugh when you came back with your net and not one single fish. I'm sure he'll go back soon with some reinforcements and we'll be able to have fish for dinner.
John is currently working with a young couple in Myanmar who house over 12 kids in a safe home just across the border. They take in and care for abandoned kids who then become beggars and street children. He is welding them 6 sets of bunk beds. It is so good to see John being able to use his skills to be a blessing to others.
The Thailand Government is still in a lot of turmoil. First there was curfews and all government facilities being shut down. After a week or two the curfews were lifted, but there is still a significant army presence. The Coup is still in effect and there have been noticeable effects on EXPAT's here in Thailand. The Chiang Rai Labour department in particular is starting to deny a lot of work permits and visas. Luckily so far as a Case Worker it appears that my job, work permit and visa is safe. Unfortunately for others here that is not the case. Please pray for the people here that have had their worlds turned upside down by having their known future pulled out from under them. Pray that God gives them peace and shows them His Glorious Plan for their lives.
To finish I would love to tell you about the girls graduation day. I had the honour of helping to wash the feet of the girls in our current After Care Program. Sitting there with their feet in my hands watching the tears running down their beautiful faces was the most humbling experience of my life. I could tell it took every ounce of their will to sit there as we washed their feet. I pray that they will begin to look at themselves and see what we see. They are strong, kind, generous, resilient, loving, funny, smart and most importantly they are daughters of the Most High. Each girl that comes through our Program is so amazing - I cannot even begin to tell you how much. They absolutely blow me away with their personalities. I hope one day you can meet some of these young women and hear their testimonies.
Until the next blog,
All our love John, Heidi and Charlotte Sopawanalai
Written by Heidi.