Friday, April 26, 2013

Dreams turned into Reality

I can imagine the joy and excitement of welcoming your child into the world.  But I can't imagine the pain of hearing that your unborn child cannot survive in this world.

This is what was facing Steve and Nancy Peifer.  As they painted the nursery for their son, they also planned his funeral.  Stephen Wrigley, was born with Trisomy 13, a genetic defect described in the medical literature as "incompatible with life."  This normal family of four welcomed Stephen into the world on March 4, 1998, and said good-bye to him eight days later on March 12.

As the family grieved the loss of Stephen, new life was taking place.  A new way of living would be there forever, yet it was going to bring this family to a place they never thought about.  As  Steve, Nancy, along with sons, JT and Matthew experienced God's healing, they gave themselves to the people of Kenya.  This is the story about a remarkably normal, yet remarkable family going into the world and making an amazing difference.

This is a story about how God led this grieving family to Kenya, and today they feed 20,000 Kenyan schoolchildren -- enabling these children to stay healthy, and get an education.  The Peifers made a one-year commitment to work as dorm parents at Rift Valley Academy, a school for missionary children tucked in the high elevations north and west of Nairobi.

Just prior to returning to the United States, Steve visited a Kenyan school.  He saw schoolchildren, in the classroom, lying on the dirt floor, and didn't understand.  The teacher told Steve, "This is Thursday.  Most of these children haven't eaten since Monday. If they try to stand, or even sit up, they will faint."  WOW!

That broke Steve's heart and after returning to the United States, they realized their hearts were still in Kenya.  So, they returned and have made a tremendous impact on the lives of the Kenyan people. 

I highly recommend reading this book.  I received a free copy of this book and have given an unbiased opinion of this book.

I review for BookSneeze®

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Sent: Trading in the American Dream

What happens when an ordinary family living out the so-called American Dream comes to realize what they thought was their destiny, no longer is reality?  This is what happened to the Alan family.  It's an interesting story about a family's journey and calling to become missionaries.

Sent is told through the eyes of Hilary Alan, the wife and mother; who felt called to give up the ordinary American life, to become missionaries in Southeast Asia.  Hilary writes about the journey as the family had to make many decisions, including the decision to uproot the family, sell their possessions, try to explain 'who, what, why, where, how and when' to their family and friends.  The decision to take on this calling impacted Hilary, her husband, Curt, and their two children.

Not all were excited about this new journey in their lives.  The Alans' believed they were good, obedient Christians, but when God called them to serve in this manner their lives were turned upside down.

What makes this story better than the average story is that it is true and Hilary Alan does not try to give us the impression that her family was perfect.  She talks about the successes and the struggles.  She talks with stories and paints a picture of opposition which occurred along the way as well.

This is an honest story about one family's journey from normal Christianity to a new normal.  Life was good and convenient for these 'good Christians.'  Their new normal created many changes, but many good things resulted. 

This was a very good book, one I would recommend.

I received a free copy of this book from Waterbrook Multnomah in return for an objective review.

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