Monday, August 14, 2006

Capping off the summer

Josh and I just returned from a week with our teens at the headquarters of Child Evangelism Fellowship in Missouri. We had a great week working hard along side the kids!

As you know, I read quite a bit, and this week was no exception. I want to share some of the books I read and things I learned from them.

Let me start with Sold! I sat up half the night reading, and then weeping over this book. It tells the story of a girl in Nepal who is sold by her stepfather into the sex trade and then transported to India. I normally would shy away from a book like that, but it was written for teens, and the author had researched the topic thoroughly, even going so far as to travel to India and interview survivers from the Brothels. I couldn't believe that before I read this book I was totally unaware of this HUGE global issue, and all I wanted to do was HELP! I felt shallow, silly, selfish, gluttonous, rich and conceited. I have been searching ever since to find a Christian organization that specifically targets rescuing girls from the brothels and evangelizing them and teaching them a trade that will enable them to make something with what is left of their lives. I am having a hard time finding such an organization! Is it possible that that is an unchartered mission field?

Then I finished Don't Waste Your Life by John Piper. I cannot recommend this book enough! I finished reading it and wanted to PURGE my life of all the unecessary garbage, and PLUNGE headfirst into adoring and savoring Christ supremely! I could go on forever, putting huge quotes from the book, but instead I will just put one short one: "So I urge you in the name of Jesus, to wake up, and enlarge your heart, and stretch your mind and spread your wings, mount up above your limited life and see the great and thrilling big picture of God's global purposes for the history of the world."


Sarah said...

You and Josh are so cute--a model couple, really.... :-)
Are you coming for Alumni Day? YOu can stay with us if you want!(or if you want quiet, cleanliness and sanity, you may choose a hotel.) :-)
I love it that you guys take your teens to so many cool ministry opportunities--I desire to build our youth group with things such as that, but we are limited in our administration of it all.

Gretchen said...

Yes, I remember you telling me a bit about that! I can't tell you how sorry I am. Our youth group still has quite a ways to go. Tonight we had an art night for some of the girls in my Sunday School Class, and we made paintings. It was cool, some of those paintings turned out really great.

We would LOVE to stay with you guys! Can we tell you yes with the only reservation being if Kari and Lukas come, we would feel like we would have to split a hotel room with them. But we would rather stay with you! Tell me what we should bring!

Gretchen said...

besides books, of course! :)

Sarah said...

You don't need to bring anything! It will just be fun to see you guys. Josh will probably not be around, but the girls can entertain your Josh.
That is fine if you guys need to stay with K and L though....just let me know.
I don't know if Elise deserves any more books--she has been grounded from them because of how rough she is with them. :-( But Ellie is doing fine....

Gretchen said...

Maybe I will just bring very DURABLE books for little E. :)

I'm sure Josh will be very entertained with the girls.

Hindto said...

Gretchen--I had spare time today (this NEVER happens) and so I was catching up on some Blogs and went to an old post of yours and saw this. I've never heard of or read the book 'SOLD' but in answer to the question about finding an organization that helps girls get out of brothels, did you ever find an organization?

Becky MacDonald (a 2nd generation missionary to Bangledesh) is doing something right now like that--getting girls who have been sold (even by fathers/guardians) into the sexual slave trade in many different countries.

I get her newsletter--the next one I receive--if you are still interested, I will contact her about putting you on her list. Her stories of late have been just amazing to see how God is working.

Their ministry is called: Closed Door Ministries