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Saturday, November 3, 2012

Swaziland to Taiwan - we are all the same, just different.

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It’s Saturday morning and I am in South Africa on my last leg of an 11-day trip to Taiwan.  While it was a wonderful trip visiting old friends and making new ones, there is no place like home and I will be home soon.

The past eleven days has been spent raising money through the 2nd 100 KM Walk for Water campaign with the students of Changhua Senior High School and other students from Canada, Japan and the United States who joined in.  It was encouraging to see so many businesses join together with students from around the world to help us with funding for the water dam at Project Canaan.  I also enjoyed the opportunity to share about Heart for Africa with the teachers and students from Morrison Academy and applaud all they are doing to serve the Lord and point their students to a life of serving Him. 

I hesitate to attach those first two paragraphs with the rest of the thoughts on this blog so please know that these two topics are not connected in any way other than geography and time. _____________________________________________________________________

Now a few other thoughts from last week.

On the surface, Taiwan and Swaziland appear to be vastly different worlds. Taiwan is stacked high with people living in densely populated high-rise buildings, tens of thousands of motorcycles and food being cooked up and down every street you see.  The opposite is true of Swaziland where 90% of the people live in rural homesteads, walking is the primary mode of transportation and food is scarce due to drought, poverty and unemployment.

One of the similarities of the two nations is the kindness of the people.  I find the Taiwanese and the Swazi people to be kind, gentle, polite and very loving.  There are people in both countries whom I would consider dear friends and those who are family to me.

But on this trip to Taiwan I discovered another similarity and one that was unexpected, and disturbing. 

While sharing with people about the challenge we face in Swaziland with the increase in “baby dumping”, I learned that there was a challenge in Taiwan of a similar, but different nature.  It is abortion.  A couple of women working with Pregnancy Crisis Centers (which are few) told me that it is reported that 90% of all single women who get pregnant have abortions, and many of these women have multiple abortions in their lifetime. It is a growing problem and the total estimated numbers are staggering as women continue to be educated, enter the work force and have options that weren't always available to them.

Unwanted pregnancies are not a new phenomenon and neither is abortion or child abandonment, but the growing awareness of these things must bring us all to our knees in prayer for the mothers, fathers and babies.

If you read my blog dated May 23, 2012 you will know that I am adopted and that my birth mother was 15-years old when I was born in 1963.  As we continue to receive babies in Swaziland who have been dumped I am reminded daily of the gift of life that I, and our new babies have been given. Once again I give thanks that my birth mother chose life for me.  Now I have the opportunity to help others choose life.   

I am thankful that I have the opportunity to meet people all over the world so that we can share our challenges with each other and pray for each other. People are people no matter where you go.  We all have struggles in our lives, in our families and in our communities.  We live in a world full of pain and suffering, but we must remember that there is a God who sees all (El Roi) and loves us through our pain and in spite of our sin.  For all of you who are followers of Jesus and who read this blog, please join me in praying for the children of this generation all around the world, that they will rise up to be strong leaders for righteousness and show love towards others.

Live from Swaziland … I arrived home on the top of the mountain at Project Canaan in Swaziland and am thankful.

Janine 


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