Christmastide Season and New Year ’21
“I believe that you, you and I, need to surrender and submit to this … ” (Nora quote)
15 days into my 21-day Covid-19(C-19) quarantine in Beirut, Lebanon, and part of a 31-day trip, Nora said the above. Wasn’t she the one I was always asking prayer for, in my travels? Yet, I was the one struggling through moments of pain-anger, stuck in a hotel room, wanting to bust out? She turned a huge corner! It was so refreshing to my heart. Wow, were we glad to see each other again !!!
Thanksgiving found us C-19-prevention gathered as a family. All hands-on-deck as each of us helped in the kitchen under the Commodore … Nora.
“Commodore” is no random word. We’re learning a whole new vocabulary, as Eliana signed up for the U.S. Navy. So hard to believe, our 19-year-old daughter, youngest of our kids, and last to leave home, ships off to Naval Station Great Lakes, 3 January.
Travel has been an eggshell-walk this year. You may recall, we just got back from the Middle East in the Spring, some five days before C-19 era travel ceased altogether (escape, whew!). Even that trip, entering Iraq, they took our temperatures at the airport twice. October/November, we window-squeezed into Iraq and Lebanon, with much accomplished on the ground in both countries, only to have our last two days in Lebanon putting me into C-19 positive quarantine in a Beirut hotel (captured, got me!).
Looking back on 2020, and into 2021, we are amazed at accomplishments, amidst what sometimes seemed like our blunders and naive raw acts of faith and love. It’s impossible to capture here, all that’s happened on the field, in our hearts, and in the hearts and lives of others.
Tamara, with her husband(Sam), are such examples of those we’re privileged to partner and serve. War-torn(post) Armenia, in its darkest hour, has such a light as they. Tamara, and her volunteers, have now:
* started a Community Center teaching sewing and postcard making
* built an outhouse and updated the Center
* taught and counseled many serving IDP (Internally Displaced Persons)
* distributed bread-making ovens to 10 homes and 25+ family entities
* gained closer proximity to IDP camps and teaching sewing skills there,
* organized distributions of blankets, hygiene supplies, bedding, and children’s school needs materials.
Tamara “gets” TCD-Transformational Community Development !
Iraq and Lebanon trips recently found us, once again, opening new doors, as we served in familiar places like refugee camps among Yazidi and in the Beqaa Valley among Syrians. Children were able to start school, as we distributed basic education starter-kits for Yazidi children. TCD education moved ahead as the team purchased and taught mechanical sets principles. Our dear friend, Joseph, in Beirut, made it back from the brink of severe C-19, is now doing very well. We are so grateful for his healing and restoration.
Another miracle … !
During my Beirut quarantine, minor-brief-cursory conversations began with Joseph, Mike (my colleague), another “anonymous Mike”(aM), and myself. aM has political, relational, and external financial connections. Joseph has political and relational connections. Regular Mike and I have … well, limits in these areas. Things happen when people of faith and love step out, just saying. In five weeks, all the extremely complicated financial, logistical and relational pins fall into place to unlock the metaphorical lock. As you read this, Joni&Friends, bent over backward to help us all expedite 1000 wheelchairs +++, which arrived via ocean freight in four 40’ containers in Lebanon. I’m tell’n ya, this kind of crazy good stuff has been happening all year, in the Middle East, Armenia, and other places we work, smack in C-19 times and territory !!!
Nora and I cannot thank you enough for your part in all this, and in our personal lives. Good is happening and bursting forth and moving ahead, regardless of politics and social upheavals.
Typically, 20%-30% of our annual and additional monthly financial needs are received and/or added in these final days and weeks of each year.
If your heart so moves you, we would love for you to participate. Relationships, prayer, financial, participation in trips, and more, are all intricate in these wild steps of faith and love we can all step into in 2021.
Affectionately always and a Joyful Christmastide Season and New Year to you …
Daniel and Nora
Global Hope Network International
934 N. Magnolia Ave. Suite # 310
Orlando, FL 32803-3840