Thursday, January 8, 2009

Final Thoughts & Thank You

Wow, I can not believe that 18 weeks ago tomorrow, a group of us meet with Tim & Monica Cypert about Lost Orphans and a potential trip to Vietnam. I remember the fire in Tim's eyes as he shared the mission and the details of the emerging organization. I knew then that I was to go on the trip, but was too scared to admit it then. I remember Tim saying that if 4-5 people commit to go the trip would be on.

Funny that 17 weeks later when we finally reached the community, there were 20 of us. I am thankful that I am surrounded by a group of friends that help me see clearly. I have always said I am a better coach than player; I like to challenge people, but people like Bill, Aaron, Mike, and Brian are good at throwing it back at me. It was clear to several of us that we were being called to go, but all had doubts, that is until He, decided to squash them in a matter of hours.

I have learned so many things on this journey, many I still have not been able to digest, and others that I don't know what do with yet. But the one thing reinforced in my life is never put Him in a box. I am now challenged with what to do in my daily life to continue to live true faith. Going on the trip and being faithful is one thing, while there you have very little to distract you from the mission, but at home, well, we all have a million things to do. I think the next step for me has to be to care for the "least and lost" in my everyday life that I typically ignore and to work us unto Him so as to be a good steward with the many blessing I have.

Below is a note I wrote to a few people who supported us on the trip, however I realize that there are so many more that supported us in thoughts and prayer, some of whom I may not even know. so this is for you as well and thank you.

I just wanted to say thank you to all who have supported this trip. Your donations and prayers are very appreciated and went to a great cause. I invite you to check out my blog at to see evidence of the work God is doing in Vietnam through your support.

Over 400 families received food and money provisions; we were able to give every family at the food distributions a 22 lb bag of rice, 1 lb of sugar, 1 liter of fish sauce (protein), and a 5 Lb box of noodles. This along with the equivalent of $6 US will feed a family of 4 for 2-3 weeks. We also gave much needed clothes and shoes as well as balls and small toys. We also handed out over 400 Vietnamese Bibles.

All this was in addition to the supplies and love we shared with the kids at the Community in Vietnam. That community is the orphanage that the Lost Orphans organization supports. There are currently 49 children there and 1 expectant birth mother. There are also I believe 5 ladies who have recently had babies that are living and working there and will probably leave their babies there, because they have no way to care for them. The day we left another young lady stopped in who was expecting and agreed to give her baby over to the Sisters who run the community, this girl had the baby yesterday and they asked Tim Cypert to be the god father, sponsor the baby, and name the child. We had so much fun loving on these children and spending time with the them. We were able to provide them with some new clothes, shoes, took them for ice cream, and to the beach.

I was encouraged after seeing the community, these kids may or may not get adopted at some point, but regardless they will have the best care. They get a very nice home/facility to keep them safe, they get to eat 3 meals a day, they get to go to school (which is not free and many kids in families to do even get to do this), and the organization is working on a way to send them to college. The Sisters provide love, education, discipline, and teach the children about Christ's love. In many ways these kids have more opportunity than a large portion of the children living with families in Vietnam. Some of the older kids were left at the community as toddlers or young children and have heart wrenching stories. 4 of these children, the oldest are girls ages 5-7, they were the hardest to reach at first, but gradually came to trust us. These girls are beautiful and I am hopeful of a bright future for them. The rest of the group was either born into the community or left there as babies. It was awesome to watch the way God organized the team, with a diverse mix of people with different talents and passions. Everyone had a place that they naturally fit, so all aspects of the trip and the service were covered.

I again appreciate you willingness to be part of this, and know that I was blessed far beyond anything I could have imagined. I know that we don't have to travel literally to the other side of the world to see what I saw, but there is something to serving the least and the lost outside of our comfort zone. It challenges in ways you can not anticipate and removes barriers and strips you bare. I hope you all have been blessed in supporting us, that is my prayer for you, and I pray that God shows you and your family favor.

We are all called to give, pray, and go, though not everyone can do all at the same time, so I challenge each of you to continue to get uncomfortable and answer the question " wanna go?" as often as you can. Also please let me know how my family can support you as your walk down the roads God has put you on.

In Him

Michael Henry

Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Gal 6:9-10

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