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Saturday, November 16, 2019

Thoughts from 30,000 feet in the air - what is the truth?

CTV Ottawa with Egg Farmers of Canada CEO, Tim Lambert

On October 16th Ian and I left the comfort of our home in Africa and headed to North America for a month-long journey to build awareness of what is happening in the Kingdom of Eswatini, the developments on Project Canaan and to raise money for the project to continue.

We have flown 26,000 miles (42,000 KM), visited 14 cities (sleeping in 14 beds), driven 1,200 miles (2,000 KM) in rented or borrowed cars, spoken to hundreds of people, answered a million questions,  eaten too many good meals and braved the snow/slush/blizzards of a Canadian winter.


The highlight of our trip was, without doubt, spending time with Spencer and Chloe. We got to see Chloe’s new student housing at Brock University and meet many of her close friends, and then got to witness Spencer graduate from Queen’s University (Smith School of Business) with a double Master degree in International Business and Marketing Management).  I am very proud to announce that Spencer was hired by EY (formerly Ernst & Young) in Chicago, and will fulfill his dream of becoming a Marketing consultant there.  We are so proud of both of our children.


Having two grown children studying marketing, we often find ourselves discussing our past lives in the marketing world, learning lots of new things from them and observing what hasn’t changed at all. The question of “The media vs. The message” came up the other day, and it made me reflect on our 30 day journey. Were people responding to the media (Ian and me) or to the message of HOPE that we were sharing.


In some ways the trip was disconcerting because it seemed that people looked at us as Super-heroes having given up a life of luxury to serve the poor, but nothing could be farther from the truth, and the truth is what we were trying to share.

The truth is, we were called to serve the poor and the oppressed, and there is nothing that gives us more joy than to do that.  The truth is that I was homesick for 30 days and can’t wait to land in Johannesburg in a few hours (we are on our last, 15-hour, flight).  We will stay overnight (the border from South Africa to Eswatini closes at 10PM so we have to stay in SA) and then get up in the morning, grocery shop and then make the 5-hour drive home, with hopes to see the children before they all settle in for their dinner and evening routines.  The truth is, I miss our little ones.

Thank you to my dad's family for coming and supporting us.

It’s not an easy road to travel, but one that I wouldn’t change for anything, but it is hard to straddle between a world of abject poverty and despair to the a land of riches and plenty, especially when many who have plenty still think they are poor.

I am thankful for everyone who came to meet us, greet us, hear us speak, share in our joys and our tears, made a financial gift and/or prayed with us.  You were all a blessing to us and we are leaving North America encouraged that there are some people who DO care about “orphans and widows in distress” (James 1:17)

Canadian friends Leslie and Fraser Wilkinson

Tuesday is my birthday and I have the privilege of sharing it every year with three of our children:  Rachel and Leah turn 7-years-old (their mother died years ago after a long fight with Tuberculosis) and Maxwell turns 5-years-old (he was abandoned on a railway line and came to us with the name “Maxwell” on his health card!). It will be a day of fun, lots of cake and pure joy and I can’t think of anywhere I would rather spend my birthday.

Today I am going to make a bold ask of you the reader. Would you consider making a donation in honor of our birthdays?  We have a year end matching gift of $50,000 right now so any donation you make will instantly be doubled. Many of you knew Rachel and Leah’s mom and perhaps would give $7 for each of the twins or $70 or $700?  You could give $5.00 or $50 or $500 in honor of Maxwell or his very name?  And I will turn 56-years old, so perhaps you would like to give $56?  Or $560?  Or even $5,600?



Every dollar that you give will be matched and go directly to helping us feed more children, rescue more babies, employ more people and educate the future leaders of Eswatini. HOPE – that is what we are all about.

Thank you for being on this journey with us.

Live from 30,000 feet above the earth … on our journey home.

Janine

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