‘Give With Your Heart’, reminds me, I am a vessel, a servant.   I am also aware that one who has nothing, has nothing to give.

‘Create in me a clean heart, O God ……..’ Psalm 51: 10. Do I possess a heart of diligence for the hungry, desperately poor and terminally ill and am I touched, challenged?   Is my heart one of duty, submission, willing to say ‘Yes’? Do I desire to grow deeper in my love, my passion for the lost and dying?

In my own private devotion this morning, I read the parable of ‘The Good Samaritan’ who when he ‘SAW’ him, went back, bandaged his wounds… A few days ago I received the following quote from my friend Barbara. The first question the priest and Levite asked was ‘If I stop to help the man what will happen to me?’ The Good Samaritan reversed the question. ‘If I do not stop to help this man, what will happen to him?’ (Martin Luther King). A discerning heart!

As I unlocked the door of room 205 very late on Monday evening, in the darkness, there on our hall table, beautiful pink roses had been placed; attached was a little note: ‘Welcome Home, we have missed you, you are loved …..’ My heart was so moved by this expression of love. As I write, there are nine bunches of Roses, Tulips, Lilies, Orchids, Snowdrops, all lovingly brought by my girls from their heart to mine.   Why am I sharing this with you? I am so blessed, so privileged to have these Jewels grace my life. They fill my heart and give me so much joy. BUT GOD, God knew I would need to feel their heart beat, the week ahead would be emotional as I would come face to face with the reality that not everyone knows the joy of being loved or wanted! Others are weighed down by the heat of the day.

As I entered the hospital ward of the Abandoned Baby Unit, ‘Adam’ (my special treasure) smiled, stretched his little arms for me to hold him. He was pale and had lost weight since I last held him. Other little darlings, so beautiful, yet crying just to be held, to be loved, to be wanted. I am reminded of the beautiful hymn penned by Bernard of Clairvaux:  ‘O hope of every contrite heart, O joy of all the meek; To those who fall, how kind Thou art, How good to those who seek. But what to those who find? Ah this, Nor tongue or pen can show, The love of Jesus, what it is, None but His loved ones know’.

The words ‘To those who fall, how kind Thou art’ kept pounding in my heart. Returning home some hours later I questioned in my mind ‘What price is love?’ I began to wonder what the Lord Jesus was like as a baby, a little boy. We read He was full of wisdom for He was chosen, favoured by God. He knew the love and security of a humble home. And so I accept God’s placement FOR SUCH A TIME AS THIS, and thank you for standing with me with a heart of compassion, as we reach out and touch ‘Even One’. Together as we journey may we know who walks with us, who calls our name. May we feel something stirring in our hearts. May we, as those who walked the Emmaus Road, walk together throughout 2017.

Marinela (Director, Emanuel Hospice) and Monika (Director, Casa Grace) have been spending time with me discussing various needs, urgent medical aid, monthly food provision. We as a team are trying to define the important from the very important. As I visit and share the Word of God, I pray ‘eyes will be opened’ and that they may know there is forgiveness of sins for all who call on Him. I will visit two days (Hospice) one with Estera, one with Daria. Two days with Monika (Casa Grace) one day Hospitals and Child Life Romania. Saturday is a day I will visit individuals i.e., Violeta, Manuela and Baby Andreea (I will be visiting Manuela on Saturday, 25th March in Cluj), Denisa, John.   Monika’s Uncle who recently had eight toes amputated and will be admitted to a special hospital for one month to learn how to walk again. One important visit to my Dora who will be thirty on 14 March. She is asking John, her father, ‘What day is Shirley coming?’ Monika and I are planning a special Birthday Party with two of my girls (Oana and Silvia) joining in the celebration. A memorable day for her as we have many birthday gifts to share.

I read in the Book of Joel ‘I am sending you grain and wine and olive oil, enough to satisfy your needs’. That is all we require, just enough to satisfy the needs we encounter each visit. All different, individual, yet real! We need to tell them that out of their brokenness can come blessing as they turn to the Lord. I ask you to hold me in your heart in prayer as I visit families with many children, (perhaps even twelve) all struggling to survive. Sister Dorina is waiting for my visit and many others whose time is short. During this mission trip I will visit many new patients and contacts – please pray for wisdom and guidance. I will share specific needs and prayer requests as directed by the Lord.

Brother Tommy and Sister Jacqueline Wright who built and packed the pallets have confirmed they are on route – contents of blessing, provision – God is so faithful. Five Hundred Cadbury Cream Eggs covered with an Easter Chick or Bunny etc. Medical, Clothing, Filled Handbags, Backpacks. Carla was discharged from hospital two days ago and I patiently await the arrival of the pallets to take the beautiful duvets, pillows, pj(s), coats to this precious family in the village of Mahai Bravo. A lot to accomplish, the need is great, the challenge greater. No free days until our return. There is a cry from the heart, there is a cry for help. ‘When we can’t trace God’s hand, we can trust His heart’. Warren Wiersbe.

The Lord has given Hamilton and I different ministries, a partnership, a role Unto Him. We share breakfast together, sharing at the close of each day our designated roads of service. It is vital my husband leaves a legacy behind.   The Theology students, eager to learn with a heart and passion for the lost, need to be taught by Godly mentors and as I prayerfully remember the Faculty who serve in Emanuel University, I am thankful for these dedicated servants who train the Army of Tomorrow.

A knock at the door, a telephone call, former students of Dr. Moore (IBC) now pastoring in Romania, take time to contact their ‘Professor’, their ‘Friend’. Pastor Catalin Croitor, Suceava and Pastor Ovi Hanc, Arad. Many young Theology students calling at 205 ‘Welcome Home Sir’. O may all who come behind us find us faithful.

The third publication on the Book of Galatians is well underway ‘Glory In The Cross’. There is need for this instruction and teaching. Pray for all planned publications and the completion of the translation of the book on the Pastoral Epistles, soon to be released in Romania.

Join with me in thanking God. £1,500 has been given to Emanuel Hospice and £1,500 to Casa Grace to cover February, March and April. We are trusting God for the remaining eight months of Give With Your Heart appeal. All I have needed Thy Hand hath provided. Great is Thy faithfulness.

Shirley, 04 March, 2017