Monday, May 30, 2011

Mindful of Us

STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO: Picture Praise, 5/30/11

I took this shot out of a train window traveling through extreme western China on our way to Kashgar. The man in the photo looked so alone in the midst of such an expansive grassland. If you look closely at the photo, you can see that he is holding a sickle in his hand.

photographer: Nancy Todd, US. "My husband, Terry, and I are on staff with Barnabas International. We are privileged to do pastoral care of global servants living in Asia and Africa."Link

from the pages of the May/June '11 issue of the WOTH onlineMagazine:

"I'm Not Interested in Getting Married: The Joy of Serving as a Single...Really!" by Hahassah, Asia.

One reader's response from the Message Board: "Thank you for the clarity and insight which you brought to the topic of marriage and singleness in this article. I will be showing it to several friends."

Monday, May 23, 2011

Hey Bro!

STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO: Picture Praise, 5/23/11

This picture captures two aspects of life here:

1) Ben's [my son] happiness at having a good friend. He'd felt rather friendless after some of the friends he'd had when we first moved here moved away to other mission assignments with their families. Ben had really been struggling last year in school and with deep sadness. This picture captures the essence of healing, a glad heart, and joy. For me, it was good to see my son smiling and happy. "A glad heart makes a cheerful face..." (Proverbs 15:13).

2) The second aspect this picture captures the essence of our life here in the Philippines—DIVERSE—filled with wonderful friends from many nationalities. We are blessed. This picture was taken on the track and field day at Faith Academy, an international Christian school for missionary kids he goes to here in Davao.

photographer: Beth Symanzik, Philippines. “We moved overseas over 4 years ago. This is our first time overseas. Our oldest daughter was 12 when we moved here. Now she is 16 and loves it here! Our family has been through many changes and stresses. We came over as a family of 5 and are now a family of 7; we’re in the process of adopting twin boys. We've had them since they were 9 weeks old. They are 3 years-old now. My husband works as a software developer in our mission organization. I have been guest house manager and hospitality coordinator. Currently I am being a full-time mom and also working on a masters degree in counseling.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Grand Faith

STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO: Picture Praise, 5/16/11

Doña Concha loves her children and grandchildren. She has been a grandmother who gives affection as well as discipline. We see her here with one of her many grandchildren. Pedrito is a bright, inquisitive child always on the move, yet all that activity stops when it is time for a hug from his dear “Mama Conchita.” How reassuring are frequent hugs throughout the day. He will often intertwine his hands in her long silvery braid, as so many young children naturally do with the hair of their mothers and grandmothers.

photographer: Denise Aulie has called Mexico home for 34 years and looks back at a significant life of ministry in evangelism, discipleship and church planting with her husband, Ed, and their five children. Denise teaches, public speaks, writes and has an ongoing ministry of hospitality. Photography has an indispensable place in her heart as a means of interaction, outreach and giving to those she has the privilege of knowing. This beautiful tool has literally opened doors for conveying the Good News. She and her family are part of Last Frontiers -

Monday, May 9, 2011

He Cares...He Really Cares!

STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO: Picture Praise, 05/09/11

This beautiful little wild flower was growing up between the concrete blocks of our back patio where we hang the laundry. It was a huge reminder to me of God's sovereignty and infinite care. As Scripture reminds us..."and if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you.”

He cares that I am still in the turmoil of cultural adjustment as we've only been living here for seven months. He cares that I still don't understand the language. He cares that I miss my friends. He cares for my kids as they attend a Spanish-speaking school even though they don't yet speak Spanish. He cares that I can't find Cheerios in the grocery store. He cares that we have left everything familiar behind to follow Him into the unfamiliar.

That single flower growing up in an unlikely place served as a reminder that God cares and He is walking this journey with me and my family as we seek to love and obey Him in Nicaragua (Central America).

photographer: Bethany Bracht, Managua, Nicaragua

Monday, May 2, 2011

Bread Alone

STORY BEHIND THE PHOTO: Picture Praise, 05/02/11

Psalm 104 splendidly describes God's greatness, generosity and amazing creation. Living in rural Europe, I can relate to this psalm...clouds, mountains, livestock, wine and bread. Once I was watching the Jesus film (in Italian) with the daughter of cross-cultural workers.

"Man shall not live by bread alone!" she translated.

"Oh?" I asked.

"You should have wine with it!" she quipped.

That's a European MK for you! I’d be happy to have just bread, if only I could find a good hearty one here in the U.S. After a year of home assignment, I can't wait to get back to Bauernbrot (farmers’ loaf) and chewy crusts!

I have friends who compare Europe to less developed locales and feel I live in “Disneyland.” Yes, Europe is clean and quaint, but it is still a needy field. says about Germany: "The Church is sometimes perceived as irrelevant and marginalized. There is increased open hostility to anything Christian, and the occult and a New Age worldview are on the rise, but evangelicals are slowly growing in numbers." That's why I feel privileged to serve at a Christian school, in Germany, ministering to children of cross-cultural workers to Europe, Africa and Asia.

Mari Ellen Reeser, Germany.


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