Friday, April 29, 2016

So Many Miles



So many miles…
1,989 + 6,238 + 382 + 487 + 1,587 …

A family of 5 traveling approximately 11,000 miles to various destinations and living out of suitcases for 31 days should make us expert packers, right?  After the first week our best laid packing plans unrolled into possession chaos:
   “Where’s my toothbrush?”
   “Those are my socks!” “
   “I know I packed that shirt…who took it?”
Plus, our generous family and friends added warm clothes to bless our un-acclimated bodies to the chilly temperatures…
   Hats.
   Scarves.
   Gloves.
   Sweaters.
   Jackets.
   Boots.
Yep, time to get a trailer (or some warmer weather)!

After sorting through our compound in Kenya and transitioning ministry to the Resource Center at the local church, we began our long adventure over the ocean and across the USA to see family, visit friends and share stories of God’s amazing grace to those living among the least in Kisumu. We’ve received many warm and big-hearted welcomes.  THANK YOU for loving us so well!

We are happy to report the Kisumu Resource Center continues to prosper. A church in Ohio recently provided funds to build one porcelain toilet system for the elderly/physically challenged and two flushing squat potties. The Kenyan advisory board and management team provides unified leadership for ministry programs so those living in poverty have opportunity to belong, to contribute and to serve – just like the Bible teaches. 
 
 Kisumu Resource Center Family Day

As we settle into our Pagosa home for the next 5 months, our personal goals include:
  1.  Preparing Tavin to graduate from high school and investigate his next step. 
  2.  Helping Taleah reintegrate into a community she left over 5 years ago.
  3.  Navigating immigration rules and Henry’s path for healthy development.
  4.  Participating in some family debriefing sessions. 

Our speaking schedule takes us to Texas in June so please connect if you would like to know more about how we “equip developing-nation churches to biblically minister to people living in poverty, specifically widows and orphans” Does your organization or church support missions that need sustainability tools? We can assist. Working together creates caring churches.

"Hey, has anyone seen my mittens? I’m freezing!" 

Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o 

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Just Check'in In...


Just check'in to share a quick update –

After living in the chaos of separating, packing and moving and packing some more, we are on our way to USA – with Henry. It feels surreal to write these words; after 2 years of “unknown” for this little orphaned boy (who’s grown tall) and consistent ministry with those living in extreme poverty, we are more than ready for furlough. We will miss our good friends in Kenya but we are EXCITED to see family and friends back home.

Serving in Kenya for 5 years reaped beautiful fruit of transformation. Culturally relevant discipleship programs built healthy relationships. Those living in poverty now serve in their communities. Victimized widowed mamas feel empowered to raise their children. Clean water is shared with the gospel message in villages and the slums. A functioning Resource Center equips the local church to biblically minister to those in need. Only God can take a seed of a vision and cause it to mature into meaningful reality.

If you’d like us to share some of our experiences of seeing God moving while living among the least, please be free to contact us and we can set aside some time to visit.  We can also present at churches, small groups and organizations. Below is our itinerary:
  • March 28th - 31, Washington DC.
  • April 1 -7 Buffalo, NY
  • April 8 – 17 Columbus, Ohio
  • April 17 -21 Driving to Colorado
  • April 22 Staying in Pagosa Springs (but can still travel to share)
Our time frame for returning to Kenya In not scheduled yet, but it will probably be in late December.

Please pray for us:
  • International travel with Henry -  a first for this boy!
  • Continued health and provision. (Taleah's still dealing with a painful tooth ache.)
  • Continued unity and effectiveness for the ministry in Kisumu.
The Resource Center Advisory Board, Management Team and some of the mamas.

We certainly appreciate all the prayers, support and encouragement.
As we say here in Swahili, “Asante sana. Nema shakuru. Mungu akubariki sana.”
“Thanks you so much. We are grateful. God bless you so much.”

hugs from the haugers Ooo0o

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Oops! In all the excitement we forgot...


Oops! In all the excitement, we forgot our last post for “Week of Water.” What excitement? We have Henry’s non-immigrant visa to visit the USA! Yea Jesus! Thanks for all your prayers.

Below is the missing water post and prayer requests.

 
Meet David Otieno. He’s our “water guy” - the person in charge of constructing, delivering, and informing his community about bio-sand water filters. His own story helps share the importance of providing opportunity to access potable water...

“She’s sick again” David hung his head when we asked about his little girl. Three-year-old Mary was fighting diarrhea and fever for months. Consistent medical expenses to treat her were draining the family’s small income.

David and Nancy both grew up as orphans, raised by guardians. Neither knew the close care and comfort of a mom and dad. Mary’s chronic sicknesses made them feel helpless, instigating a root of rejection and threatening loss.

“Let’s pray.” We joined with David requesting God to intervene and show us the cause of Mary’s weakening condition.

In the following weeks David and Mark worked on bio-sand water filters, transporting them to widowed mama recipients. As we discussed the benefits of the filtered water, David had a thought… “Mary’s continual illness could be related to contaminated water.” David lives in a flood plane of Lake Victoria and many children suffer because their small bodies cannot effectively fight water-borne illnesses.

On a warm Sunday afternoon we delivered a bio-sand water filter to David’s humble home; since then, Mary’s health has dramatically improved.

Clean water ministered to this family - bringing health, income and assurance that their Heavenly Father knows how to care for them.

This “sustainable story” was seed funded by your generous donations.


Please join us in praying for…
  • Our travel plans.  We should be departing Kenya at the end of March for a stateside furlough. While there, we hope to visit with as many people as we can to share the vision of biblical ministry to those living in poverty.
  • Ministry in the Resource Center to function with unity and integrity found in God’s amazing grace. We’re excited about the advisory and management teams!
  • The widowed mamas who still need school fees to send their very bright older children to school. The mama’s are not just given funds. They contribute volunteer services to show appreciation for the help they receive.
  • Continued heath, provision and protection.


Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Week of Water 3: Do you know the Living Water?

Our third post in Week of Water shares the tract we 
use to explain the gospel message with those who 
are gathered to watch the process of setting up a 
bio-sand filter in a community.  
Do you know the Living Water?


LIVING WATER 
Both natural and spiritual life requires water… God created human beings to enter into the world in birth through water.  We need clean water to sustain our lives - water free from parasites, harmful bacteria, and toxins.  Drinking water that is not clean makes you and your children sick with runny tummy that brings death. Also, not drinking enough water will make you feel weak and confused. If you miss water for many days, you will die.

Our physical need for water reflects our need for spiritual water.  The Bible says we all thirst for Living Water.  John 4:7-13 says a Samaritan woman was at a well, drawing her daily water.  She was embarrassed by her life because she had lived with many men.  Jesus walks to the well, asks the woman to give him a drink. She was surprised that Jesus, a Jew, would even speak to her because Jews and Samaritans disliked each other.  Jesus explained that if she knew who He was, she would ask him for Living Water. Jesus said, “Whoever drinks this water will be thirsty again.  Whoever drinks the water that I will give him will never be thirsty. The water that I will give him will become in him a well of life that lasts forever.”

Have you felt the Jesus won’t speak to you because of who you are?  Have you felt a desire for Living Water to satisfy your thirst for truth? Jesus can cleanse you from fear, shame and evil .  Ezekiel 36:25 I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you.   John 7:37 If any man thirst, let him come unto  (Jesus), and drink.  He that believeth on (Jesus), as the scripture says, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.   This promise is made to you and your children as it says in Is. 44:3 “I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour my Spirit upon your offspring, and my blessing on your descendants.”

Who do you say that Jesus is?

John 3 says there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus.  He came to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, did you come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”  Jesus answered, “ I say to you, unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”  Nicodemus said, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?”  Jesus answered, “ Unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.  That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.  Do not marvel that I said, ‘You must be born again.’  The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear the sound of it, but cannot tell where it comes from and where it goes. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”  Nicodemus answered, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.”
Isaiah 12:2-3 says we should draw water with joy from the wells of salvation.
Do you want Jesus to cleanses you from every act of wickedness? Do you want to be saved from the grip of evil? Do you want to know how to draw living water from the wells of salvation?  Do you want the life God intended for you?
1.  Accept that you need spiritual cleansing and acknowledge Jesus alone can bring you new life.
2.  Believe that Jesus, perfect in goodness, died on the cross, He suffered a horrible death - a penalty that should have been ours for the evil choices we make.  Jesus willingly suffered that penalty Himself so He can cleanse us with His precious blood. By Jesus Christ sacrifice you are washed clean from sin and free to have relationship with God Almighty.
3.  Confess aloud for God to forgive you, to wash away your old life and birth you into a new life in Christ. Thank Him for rescuing you with His amazing love.
YOU ARE BORN AGAIN! Live your new life by reading the Bible, praying and attending a healthy Bible - believing church.  May you drink deep from God’s endless Water of Life and grow into everything He created you to be.
Aunt Rose giving water cleaned by her biosand filter to children in the village.
There are four filter in this community and one more to be placed later this month.
That's five areas the gospel of Living Water is being proclaimed and disease-free water 
is available.


But now, because of your help, the number is decreasing 
and people hear the truth about Jesus.

Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o

Friday, February 12, 2016

Week of Water 2


Since we are posting for this week about water in Kenya, let us explain what a bio-sand filter is, how it works and benefits to the communities where they are placed.

First, what is a bio-sand water filter?
It is a water treatment system using a slow sand filtration process. Bio-sand filters remove pathogens and particles from water using biological and physical processes that take place in a sand column covered with a biofilm (a layer of germ eating bacteria). It is a concrete container a bit larger than a office water cooler that is constructed by Kenyans (with Mark n our kids) using locally sourced materials.
Next, how does it work?
After the concrete case cures with an inset plastic pipe, it is filled with layers of washed sand and gravel. Dirty water is poured into the top of the bio- sand filter, where a diffuser plate (made by our Kenyan friend, Steve) evenly distributes the water over the sand bed layer. The water travels down through the sand bed, passes through multiple layers of gravel, and collects in the plastic pipe at the bottom of the filter. The clean water then exits through the plastic piping for a family to collect in clean containers.
The removal of contaminants and disease causing agents is possible due to a mixture of biological deprivation and natural filtration. The organic material in the dirty water is trapped at the surface of the sand bed, forming the layer of germ eating bacteria, which actively removes pathogens and contaminants. The water produced with the bio-sand process is tasteless, clear color, odorless and safe for drinking.

Finally, what are the benefits?                                                                                            
Studies have shown the bio-sand filter can remove more than 90% of bacteria and 100% of parasites, dramatically reducing the occurrences of water-borne diseases. Because of the filters’ effectiveness at increasing the safety of water, the ease of use/maintenance and lack of reoccurring cost, it is considered a suitable water treatment for developing countries.
Globally, hundreds of millions of people are trapped in a poverty cycle of chronic disease because they lack access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation. The statistics are unsettling: over 1.8 billion people are drink contaminated water, while 2.4 billion people lack access to basic sanitation. We are helping Kenyan use bio-sand water filters, coupled with the gospel message of hope in Jesus - the Living Water - to bring affordable, sustainable potable water solutions with a focus on salvation through Christ.

Any questions?
There's a quiz next week. ; )
 
 Interested in more info?
 Send us an email at
mlthauger@hotmail.com.

Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement!
hugs from the haugers. Ooo0o

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Week of Water 1


Over the next 7 days we plan to post “A Week of Water” and tell stories about the importance of water in a developing nation like Kenya. Hope you’ll engage with us!

The African sun scorches Kisumu this time of year, putting an abrupt end to the stormy El Nino rains. Seems like overnight our compound has gone from lush foliage to baked brown grass. Hot afternoon winds layer grimy filth across everything. When the weather gets like this, water becomes like liquid treasure to many who amble along the dusty parched roads.  That’s where our story starts…

Jackie and Dorine are widowed sisters. Together they raise children in a place where opportunity is small and wages are smaller. When they realize a bio-sand filter has been donated to their household situated along a busy access, the idea of selling clean cold water to thirsty passersby initiates. However, these Christian mamas know that water is not the real need, but offering occasions to share Christ, the Living Water is their ultimate goal.

The plan: Fill new plastic bags with pure water from the filter and place in them with ice in a used cooler purchased from the market. Outside their gate, under the shade of a Jacaranda tree, chilled water will be sold for 10 bob a bag (10cents). They asked us to help design a small Swahili tract that tells the gospel message, which they will offer with the disease-free water.  

The bio-sand water filter donation provides potable water for the family, a small business venture, and a platform for sharing the Hope that lives within them.  Want to join these mamas for some real thirst-quencher? Please pray for their meaningful success, for the tract to be culturally appropriate and touch the hearts of those who read it.










Bwana Asafiwe! (Praise the Lord!) 
We have a date for Henry’s non-immigrant visa appointment at the USA Embassy 
in Nairobi – February 18th. Please pray with us for favor. Thanks for standing with us 
through this amazingly long process. It’s beautiful to see the lengths 
God goes to welcome a son into a family.


Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Reminded to Remember


I’ve been reading Hebrews and am stuck in chapter 11. I’m not stuck as confused, but stuck like God is trying to imprint something in me…

When I think of the things we’ve walked through over the last two years of consecutively living in a developing nation, and than I compare it to the prodigious people who experienced incredible challenges without loosing trust in God, I’m obviously awed and humbled; but, it’s chapter 11 verse 40 that stirs my heart…

All these people earned a good reputation because of their faith, yet none of them received all that God had promised. For God had something better in mind for us, so that they would not reach perfection without us.”

Their faith is part of a bigger story. It becomes intertwined in ours and together we become part of God’s Great Story that culminates in Jesus. Their patient endurance, in the midst unimaginable trials, is not for comparing but for remembering. I am “reminded to remember” that God was with them. God gave them faith. God gave them courage. God gave them strength to “overthrow kingdoms and make justice work,” to even embrace a martyr’s death. A presumptuous outcome didn't justify their faith. A submissive and focused perseverance in God’s providence made their faith legendary. 
  
So regardless of what we encounter - be it a horrific crisis or daily frustrations - "let us run with endurance the race God has set before us by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith.”

We remain grateful for prayer partners and supporters like you who continually encourage our faith. This month found us delivering water filters and sharing the gospel, facilitating bible studies, meeting about the Resource Center, praying, preaching, parenting and navigating the final documents of Henry’s adoption. Below are our current requests and some important information.
Please pray for:

1.     Healing for our local pastor’s wife, Mary who has been diagnosed with benign but painful tumors in her abdomen.

2.     The Lord’s provision since a few of our widowed mamas’ children need school fees.

3.     The young adults of some of the mamas to stay strong in the Lord and resist the pull toward evil gain and drugs.

4.     The Resource Center to be managed with integrity and the team to make unified decisions that benefit the community. It’s ready to open for ministry next month after the inside is painted.

5.     Henry’s documents to be completed without unnecessary complications.
We thank God we received his adoption and birth certificates.  The Lord also      removed an impossible barrier when we tried to apply for Henry’s Kenyan passport. Yea Jesus!

6.     Our family:
·       Kids’ schooling to successfully continue. They have all been very diligent.
·       The packing process - we need wisdom on what to store, transfer and gift to others.
·       Cost effective and straightforward travel plans.
·       Restored health. We’ve experienced various infections that tend to linger.
·       Provision and Protection.

Working together, combining faith.

Telling stories, sharing faith.
Reaching out in faith for salvation.
A bubuzela in worship? Expressing faith.
Kenyan church.
Our 18 year old getting ready for his next step in life.
Our animal lover.
Can I travel yet?
We plan to take a 10 month furlough for over due medical check ups and Henry’s assessments, to investigate Tavin’s future school plans and raise awareness/funds for the ministry. Please pray about continuing your support during this time and having us share with your church, Bible group or organization. Feel free to contact us - mlthauger@gmail.com

Asante sana for your prayers, support and encouragement.
hugs from the haugers Ooo0o