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26 Apr

I came across a paper my son wrote about Compassion.  There are so many papers always on our table that I am surprised I even saw this, but I did and I am so touched by my son’s words.  He is listening and he understands where my heart is.

“Compassion is caring enough to want to change something.  If you really cared about something you wouldn’t go along talking about it or learning about it; you would go out there and make it better.  My mom has started to learn more about orphans around the world and now she wants to change those children’s life to give them a brighter future.  My mom has that drive to make the world a better place so much that she is going out to Africa this summer to feed and care for the orphans there.  Alot of people are donating for children like these and yes that is very helpful but if you really cared enough you would go out to the heart of the problem and actually help them.”

Tina Millican
“This Light of Mine”

Ordinary Lives; Amazing Results

16 Apr

Over the past two weeks I have been blessed with the opportunity to meet several new friends who are currently doing work in Africa or have done work in the US that has impacted this starving and mostly impoverished continent.  Their stories shed new light on the culture, struggles and everyday living in Africa.  I have read a tremendous amount about the various countries but never really grasped the myriad of horrific challenges that Africa as a whole faces. While these stories sadden my heart, I am not discouraged but rather have a strengthened conviction in my calling to transform and positively impact the lives of vulnerable children and struggling mothers and women.  Big or small, locally or abroad there are so many ways for each of us to make a difference. Our ordinary lives can produce and influence such amazing results.

I have been touched by the work of both ministries and individuals who have given so much to help impact poverty, abandoned orphans, hopelessness, disease, maternal care and hunger. They are my inspiration to continue on my journey and inspire others to join in on their own unique journey.  There is so much work to do!

Christ has no body on earth but yours,

no hands but yours,

no feet but yours.

Yours are the eyes through which Christ’s compassion for the world is to look out;

yours are the feet with which He is to go about doing good;

and yours are the hands with which He is to bless us now.”

 ~ Saint Teresa of Avila

What is your heart telling you?  Are you willing to open your heart to God’s will for your life? Everyone has a little light to share in an increasingly dark world!

Thank you Tay for sharing your heart and vision!  Thank you Jannekah and Martin for taking time out of your busy schedule and limited time in the States to share your stories, knowledge and passion.   Thank you Visiting Orphans, Katie Davis, Christian Ministries in Africa, World Vision and Eastside FourSquare Church for your tremendous collection of experiences and actions you are taking to help change the world. I will follow in your amazing steps, vision and work.  And finally thank you to my dear friends who are so supportive and encouraging.  You are my rock in this journey.

Let’s light our candle together and really illuminate this world by giving hope, spreading love and creating peace.

Tina Millican

“This Light of Mine”

My Purpose in Life is to Love

27 Mar

Just to preface, please read this post in its entirety!

I always get “goosies” (thanks Jennifer Lopez), when two disparate paths come together and bring wisdom, inspiration or direction.  I was recently connected by my sister-in-law to a young woman who is traveling to Kenya and Uganda this July, with an organization called Visiting Orphans. Her friend, Katie Davis is in Jinja, Uganda, and started her own ministry simply loving and helping children called Amazima. She is also the mother to 13 Ugandan children, and she is 22. Yes that’s right 22!  She moved to Africa as soon as she graduated high school and has been there since doing amazing work.  I am reading her book right now titled “Kisses from Katie” and simply can’t put it down.  I wish there were more “free” hours in the day.  I was brought to tears by a passage from her book and I wanted to share it with you.

Six-year old Derek, a shy little boy with the face of an angel, fell and bumped his head.  He looked so determined not to cry-here children are taught to be “big” and tough – but against his best efforts, tears began to flow.  I pulled him into my lap, and almost as quickly as they had started the tears stopped.  But what was left, the sorrow in those eyes beyond the tears, I will never forget.  The eyes that peered out of the six-year old face were a hundred years old and had seen more tragedy in their short lifetime than most ever will.  I was filled with grief for this beautiful boy. I cradled in my arms a child who had seen his parents and siblings killed and had more than likely been forced to kill others himself in the war in northern Uganda. This child had known what it meant to be truly starving, to be totally lost, to be utterly hopeless. 

And in the same moment of sadness,  I was blown away by the greatness of the Lord, by the fact that God in all His mighty plans had cared enough for this child, had cared enough for me, to put us together in that moment. …God had put me in the right place and given me the privilege of loving this child, gently rubbing his back and holding his hand, in a way he had not been loved in a long time, if ever.  By the grace of God, I was blessed with the gift of being able to hold and hug this child, eventually tickling him until those sorrowful eyes brightened a little, and Derek threatened to erupt with laughter.  We sat there like that for some time.  When I asked him if he wanted to go play now, he shook his head and looked at me with a face that read “No, can I stay here forever,”  and when we finally got up for dinner, those big brown eyes were full of gratitude.  God reminded me again that day that I have one purpose, in Uganda and in life, and that is to love.  I could ask for no greater assignment. 

Katie Davis, may you continue to inspire me through the pages in your book (Kisses from  Katie) and your work with children who are hungry and alone (Amazima).  If I could, I would hug you right now!  Your light is shining so bright.

Thank you Donna for connecting me to Tay and thank you Tay for lighting my life with Katie’s story.  I hope our paths connect on this Journey.

Tina Millican
“This Light of Mine”