Thursday, 28 February 2013

Oxfam: Beautiful Rice

Oxfam has a Beautiful Rice initiative to help rice farmers in Liberia to feed their families.

Rice has changed everything for Susana and her family - that's why she calls it "beautiful". You can watch Susana’s story here. Over the next year, Oxfam will be working with even more people in Liberia like Susana.

Oxfam urgently needs funds to open up their life-changing swamp farming project to 700 of Liberia's poorest families. 
As well as helping them to grow enough rice to beat hunger, your support will help these farmers to grow extra to sell, too. And that means 5,000 local people will be able to buy food at an affordable price. Watch Susana's story to see what a difference you can make.
Donate online to this cause:
£25 can buy enough seeds to help five families boost their rice harvests. New rice seeds provided by Oxfam mean that farmers like Beatrice Quayee can grow more rice. Thanks to the new seeds, she has doubled her family's rice harvest. A gift from you will help other determined, hard-working people to do the same.
£35 can train five farmers to grow enough rice to feed their families. With your help, we will train farmers like Garrison Seoh in new farming techniques, water management and pest control. Your generosity means people like Garrison will be able to feed their families long-term and earn a better income to pay for school fees and other essentials.
£113 could irrigate a swamp farm so rice crops thrive in all conditions. Unpredictable weather makes it difficult to grow rice in Liberia. Before Oxfam helped communities here to set up swamp farms, rice plants used to burn in the sun. Your donation will provide canals and dams to irrigate nearly an acre of land - helping families to control water and protect the crops growing on their farms.


Ronell x

Rice feeds the body, books feed the mind, beauty feeds the soul” {Imelda Marcos}

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Oxfam: Enough Food for Everyone IF…

1 in 8 people go to bed with the pain of hunger. It's a scandal. We can be the generation to end global hunger IF we make our politicians pay attention and Oxfam aims to make this happen!
Sign up to the campaign and you can help the world's poorest people have enough to eat by persuading your MP to act.
After you sign up you'll have the option to email your MP and ask them to raise the issues of aid and tax with the Chancellor George Osbourne ahead of the UK budget.
Let's make 20 March - UK Budget Day - the day that delivers aid to help the poorest families feed themselves and highlights the tax dodging that keeps millions of people hungry.
We have the power to help end the global hunger crisis IF we act today.

Everyone can have enough food IF world leaders act now and we can make it happen!
This year, many of the world’s most powerful leaders will meet in the UK. They must change the future for millions of people who live with the day to day struggle against hunger. But that will only happen IF we get together and make them act.
So sign the petition now to take a stand on this issue.
Ronell x
We must go, live to feed the hungry
Stand beside the broken, we must go
Stepping forward, keep us from just singing
Move us into action, we must go”
{Tim Hughes, God of Justice lyrics}

Monday, 25 February 2013

Take Time to Listen

I have been researching a lot about how to make a difference locally and how to be effective. So straight away you think about giving money, or spreading the word about a cause, or setting up a fundraising campaign, but often, we are not so quick to give our time. I was reading this post by Joyce Meyer today and was really challenged by it. She demonstrate how, often, people are grateful for financial and practical help, but often, the thing they crave the most is your time and attention: feeling valued.

Understand [this], my beloved brethren. Let every man be quick to hear…slow to speak… —James 1:19
A friend of mine lives in a large city where homelessness is a huge problem. One winter night she was coming home from work and walked by a man asking for money. It was cold and dark, and she was anxious to get home.  Not wanting to pull out her wallet in a less than safe situation, she reached deep into her purse fishing for change.  As her fingers searched in vain, the man started telling her that his coat had been stolen in the homeless shelter where he’d stayed the night before. Still trying to come up with a couple of quarters, she nodded and said, “That’s too bad”.  When she finally found the money, she dropped it into the man’s cup.  He smiled and said, “Thank you for talking with me.”  My friend realized what meant the most to that man was the fact that someone had heard him and responded.
We have a team of people from our ministry who try to help people living in the tunnels under the downtown bridge.  They have found that each of these people has a story.  Something tragic happened to them that resulted in their present circumstance.  They appreciate the sandwiches and clean clothes, but mostly they appreciate someone caring enough to actually talk with them long enough to learn about them. 
Let me encourage you to take time to listen.
Love Others Today: Do you know someone who simply needs a person to talk to? Be the one who will listen.
{From the book Love Out Loud by Joyce Meyer.}


Ronell x

Open Doors Movement: responding to the cry of the persecuted church

Tonight at church we took up our monthly charity offering. This month, the charity is Open Doors. They are doing incredible work with the persecuted church all over the world. Too often we take for granted the fact that we can freely go to church, read our Bible, pray, worship or access limitless Christian literature online. We forget our brothers and sisters in Christ around the world who are being placed in concentration camps and killed for their faith!

Open Doors is responding to this cry and reaching out to the persecuted church. Help fund this work by visiting their site.


Ronell x

Sunday, 24 February 2013

The fruit of sin vs the fruit of the Spirit

I have been seriously challenged by these verses (this week in particular) to check my reactions to others in challenging situations, so I thought I would share them with you! :)

{Galatians 5:19-24}

"When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God. But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there."


Ronell x

Saturday, 23 February 2013

Continue Taking Steps of Obedience

At the moment, there is a very difficult home situation that I am dealing with. Something happened that I thought I knew what my reaction would be; what I would do and say; in fact, my whole family thought the same, but when the situation arose, I reacted in totally the opposite way. This shocked everyone, and most of all it shocked me. So why did I go against what I naturally would have done? Obedience. I simply felt led to react in a different way and so I am, but I tell you what.. it is NOT easy!

I don’t know why God is asking me to choose this path, but what I do know is that He requires obedience. I may not be able to see the end, but He knows and that is good enough for me.

I read Joyce Meyer’s online daily devotional and it happened to be on obedience today, so I thought I would share it. I hope it encourages you!

Whatever He says to you, do it. —John 2:5
Jesus' first recorded miracle took place while He was attending a wedding celebration. When the marriage couple ran out of wine to serve their guests, Mary asked her Son to do something about the situation, telling the servants, "Whatever He tells you to do, do it." Jesus ordered them to fill up several huge water pots. When they had done so, He directed them to draw out of the vessels the water which by then had been miraculously changed into wine (see John 2:1-11). Because of their obedience to Him, the physical needs of many were met that day.
If you are looking for a miracle in your life, make sure you are sowing seeds of obedience, because the Lord has promised us that if we do so in patient confidence and trust in Him, we will eventually reap: And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint (Galatians 6:9).
Sometimes when things are not working out the way we think they should or we are not receiving the answers to our prayers as quickly as we would like, we get the idea, "Well, since God's not doing anything, why should I? Why should I be obedient if it isn't producing results?" In such times we must realize that God is always working. We just may not be able to see it, because He usually works in secret.
{From the book New Day, New You by Joyce Meyer}

Ronell x

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Sevenly: Seven Days of Change

Imagine a Reality TV show that follows the weekly challenges of Sevenly, a 30 person, for-profit company in Orange County, California, that runs a different campaign every week to raise funding and awareness for charities that are changing the world. Well, Sevenly is now aiming even bigger than before and attempting to reach even further to make a positive impact on the world. They are in fact planning to expand into the realm of reality TV and to create a show unlike any other show out there! They believe that TV can change lives and are currently raising money to create a pilot to pitch to the big networks.
The show will be called "7 Days of Change". The concept is to get inside the lives of people living through the world’s hardest issues; witness the Sevenly team implement a life-changing solution in seven days—what normally might take months to accomplish. Rally behind charities as they passionately come beside everyday heroes who are struggling and pressing forward, failing and succeeding, and celebrating – as they fight, for Seven Days of Change.

The show will focus on the challenges facing the Sevenly team, the charitable organization being featured, and individuals affected by the cause. By weaving these three stories together, the show will invite the audience to participate in an inspirational series of hope, activism, and change. 
* For press & network inquiries email:
6 Example Episodes:
1.   Get inside the homes of severe Autism and help strengthen the families at their breaking point.
2.   Raiding brothels in Cambodia and the construction of a new Safe House.
3.   Enter the hardships of Child Cancer & share the burden of extreme medical bills.
4.   Uncovering the Domestic Sex Trade and bringing restoration to its victims
5.   Breaking the chains of Domestic Violence & building Freedom Homes for the rescued.
6.   Provide life-saving surgeries for the outcast communities of Haiti.

Watch the trailer here or contribute financially online (and receive a perk!) to support Sevenly’s latest venture to change the world!


Ronell x

My Guardian

There have been a lot of changes and challenges in my life recently. This week I have been given two band setlists for church, both of which contained the song Guardian by Ben Cantelon. This song has been really encouraging and reassuring in this time, so I thought I would share it.

You can watch the video here and I will post the lyrics below:

Verse 1
King of love and grace, my Guardian
All my hopes and fears are in Your hands
I’m in Your hands

Verse 2
Where you go I’ll go show me the way
Every step I take be now my guide
God on my side

You go before me. You’re there beside me
And if I wander, love will find me
Goodness and mercy will always follow
You go before me. my Guardian

Verse 3
When I hear you say trust and obey
I will walk by faith and not by sight
God of my life

You are God our Great Defender
Strong in love forever faithful
We are yours and we will trust in You

I hope this encourages and blesses you!


Ronell x

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Forward Edge: Ordinary People with Extraordinary Purpose

Forward Edge International exists to share Christ’s love with those affected by poverty, disaster and sickness in the U.S. and around the world. By mobilizing hundreds of people each year to participate firsthand in their long-term, need-meeting projects, they help to empower individuals, churches, campus fellowships and businesses to be "the hands and feet of Jesus" in a world desperate for His touch.

To illustrate their mission, Forward Edge founder and president, Joseph Anfuso, often tells the story of a man with a bucket of water approaching a building engulfed in flames. Near the building is a row of sleeping firemen. The man must make a choice: Does he throw his bucket on the building, or on the row of firemen? Forward Edge International has made its choice: they are waking up the firemen!

Forward Edge International ‘wakes up the firemen’ and addresses urgent needs around the world by mobilizing volunteers to help initiate and sustain long-term projects and relationships. They believe everyone should have an opportunity to change a life.

Forward Edge mobilises hundreds of volunteers each year to alleviate suffering through disaster-response work, health care projects and programs for vulnerable children. Since 1983, more than 15,000 volunteers have served with Forward Edge in 35 nations, including the U.S.

So what does partnership with Forward Edge International offer?
    Life-changing Adventures—individuals are encouraged to step out of their comfort zones and into a deeper and more meaningful relationship with God.
    Decades of experience— they have been organizing short-term mission trips since 1983! 
    Long-term ministry partnerships—deep relationships built on trust with key ministries in the locations they serve.
    Customized Trips—plan a trip that matches the gifting and calling of your team.
    Training and administrative support—proven training materials and complete logistical coordination before and throughout your trip.
    On-site, knowledgeable Field Staff—dedicated servants who support your group leader(s), ensuring all your team’s needs are met while on-site.
    Worldwide service opportunities—we have relationships throughout the world and can help you answer God’s call.

No matter who you are, where you live, or in what stage of life you currently find yourself, God can use you! Get in touch with Forward Edge International and let them know how God has called you to reach out to those in need and they will do all they can to help you meet that calling.

Here are some ways of how you can help:
Serve on a Team—join a short-term missions team! The mission teams are available to anyone who wants to reach out to local and global communities. They are generally one to two weeks in length. Why wait? Begin planning your trip today!
Pray—join their Global Prayer Team! Become part of a global community of committed prayer warriors for the people and projects Forward Edge supports. Add your voice to the chorus of voices already raised in prayer.
Volunteer—there are many opportunities throughout the year for volunteers in the Portland/Vancouver metro area.
Partner—share your passion in a way unique to your skills, resources and personality that will inspire others to follow.
Sevenly are selling tshirts, jumpers and hoodies to support Forward Edge as their chosen cause this week! Buy online here!

Remember: You Really Can Make a Difference!
Ronell x

Monday, 18 February 2013

Sevenly: Help Rebuild Homes Destroyed by Hurricane Sandy

By creating weekly cause campaigns where people can purchase lifestyle products that benefit a partner charity, Sevenly has successfully unlocked a way to not only raise major funding but huge awareness too. This week on Sevenly, your purchase helps Forward Edge to rebuild a family’s home destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.

The Problem: Superstorm Sandy affected 60 million people, many of whom lost their homes and are now displaced. While most Sandy victims had homeowners insurance, flooding damage was not covered. Although over 525,000 people have applied to FEMA for disaster assistance, many have be turned down due to a severe lack of funding, leaving them homeless.

The Solution: This week, Sevenly is partnering with Forward Edge International to provide financial assistance to repair and rebuild the homes of Sandy victims. For every $10,000 dollars we raise, they will fund the materials and labor to repair the home of another family who was affected by the storm! With your support, they will rebuild not only people’s homes, but their lives as well! 

So please support Sevenly by buying clothing online or by spreading the word via facebook or twitter.


Ronell x

Keep Your Promises

by Joyce Meyer - posted February 17, 2013

Let your Yes be simply Yes, and your No be simply No... —Matthew 5:37
In 1867, a little girl named Marie was born in Poland to a pianist and a professor. Early in life, the child demonstrated an interest in education and a remarkable ability to learn.
After she excelled all the way through secondary school, she wanted to continue her education, but her father could not afford to do so because he lost much of his money in an unwise investment.  With her dreams for further study crushed, Marie took a job as a teacher and soon thereafter, as a governess.
Marie and her sister, Bronia, decided to help each other. Marie agreed to finance Bronia’s continuing education with her earnings from her governess job. When Bronia completed her studies, she would pay for Marie to attend university. Both sisters kept their word to each other.
In 1891, Marie began her studies at the world-famous Sorbonne in France. She lived in a tiny, cramped dormitory and survived primarily on bread, butter and tea. She married a physics professor in 1895 and the two of them dedicated their lives to science. She was Marie Curie. In 1911, she won a Nobel Prize for chemistry.
Marie Curie could never have made her groundbreaking contributions to the human race without the promise she and her sister made to each other. Because both of them kept their word, they were each able to fulfill their dreams. 
Love Others Today: When you make a promise to someone, keep it. God always keeps His word and we should keep ours.
{From the book Love Out Loud by Joyce Meyer.}