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Hoarding

Posted: March 24, 2020 by Patrice Miles in Patrice Miles, Prayer

90232580_10104191149566577_2718057018047856640_o“We should probably go to the grocery store. If you need me to go, I will. I think one of us needs to go because there won’t be anything left.” Lenny said after day 4 of Coronavirus pandemic. He had asked me everyday of the pandemic and every time he had brought it up, it overwhelmed me.

I wasn’t stressed because of the thought of crazy people fighting over toilet paper.

I wasn’t stressed over the thought that I might get Coronavirus.

I was stressed because I was being forced to buy stuff that we didn’t need right now. Just the thought of all that stuff in my house, overwhelmed me.

In Egbe Nigeria, we were so excited to be able to get novelties like cheese, milk, sliced bread, potatoes and apples that when there wasn’t any, we just didn’t have cheese, milk, sliced bread, potatoes or apples. We grew accustomed to having limited choices for snacks and food and just ate what was there. I didn’t realize how simple life is when you don’t have so many options until I came back to the U.S. and had so many options that it stressed me out to just make a decision on bread. White, Wheat, Honey Wheat, Stone Grain, Whole Grain, Sprouted Grain, Gluten Free, Organic, Round Top, Hawaiian, Sourdough, Rye, Multi Grain…..ahhhhh!

For the first time since Coronavirus reared its ugly head, I was anxious, stressed and overwhelmed.

What is wrong with me?

Why don’t I want to stock up?

What even do I buy and stock up on?

89179475_10221876737376090_3326374698131914752_nWe have plenty of meat because Lenny killed four deer this year. We have one loaf of bread, one gallon of milk, plenty of cereal, lunch meat, cheese, chips and snacks. We might be low on side dishes for our dinners, but they aren’t going to run out of vegetables and produce so I can go and buy those as we need them.

So, what exactly do I need to buy and why?

I mean everyone else is doing this, shouldn’t I?

Am I missing out on something, because I just don’t get it? If we run out of milk, bread, cereal, cheese, chips and snacks, then I guess we will eat something else.

I did end up sitting down and making a list of items to buy that I could freeze or keep and make later if America runs out of food. Honestly it is still only about one week of meals which is what I prepare for every week anyways.

Am I the only one struggling with getting all worked up over this pandemic?

Yes, I totally see the need to stop the spreading of this highly contagious virus by refraining from gatherings and washing my hands regularly. But the hoarding, stockpiling, purchasing of guns, posting on social media posts that instill fear, panic and anxiousness into others, I just don’t get it.

Am I weird?

Is this a missionary thing? Am I not anxious about a virus that is spreading in one of the most medically and technologically sound countries in the world because I spent 6 years in Nigeria where we experienced Ebola, regular Fulani tribal wars and community shootings? Or, is it because I am reminded in my quiet time this morning of Hebrews 2:7b – 8  you have crowned him with glory and honor putting everything in subjection under his feet. Now in putting everything in subjection to him, he left nothing outside his control. At present, we do not yet see everything in subjection to him.

So, what is your response to this pandemic?

“We need to take C.A.R.E. Africa outside of Egbe. There are so many voiceless and exhausted children in Nigeria and in Africa as a whole”

For two years this was a recurring statement in our team meetings in Egbe. How could we only help children in Egbe when there were so many children in other towns in need of help. We prayed and just never heard God tell us where, who or when.

Emma has had dreams for years of our expansion into other countries but I have always been the one to put God in a box and keep C.A.R.E. Africa small. About six months ago several of us started having dreams of expansion and felt God clearly directing us to the town of Oke Ere. So we put the word out that a team from C.A.R.E.Africa would be coming to Oke Ere. If God wanted us to open the doors of C.A.R.E. to other towns then He would have to bring the children.

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In February a team went to Oke Ere not knowing if the word had gotten out and if anyone would show up. Over 100 mothers, grandmothers and children were there waiting on us! The need was so overwhelming. We were able to interview 12 families and make home visits to about half of them. This town with only three small churches and two schools has poverty unlike anything I have ever witnessed. We had one little boy who hadn’t eaten in days and when given food he ate like a dog. It brought tears to my eyes.

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I thanked God for bringing the children. Now I needed Him to bring the sponsors!

Almost all of these kids are extremely behind in their studies. Many cannot read or write. A few don’t speak English. We are in the process of hiring special teachers to work directly with the Oke Ere children. We hope to catch them up so in September when the 2020/2021 school year starts, they will be able to cope in the classroom.

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We need your help both prayerfully and financially.

We need to find sponsors for the children of Oke Ere. The need is great!

If you already sponsor a child I ask you to prayerfully consider sponsoring a second child. I also ask that you forward this blog to as many people as God brings to mind. Tell a friend, post on social media and pray for these children and their families. Also pray for the teachers that will work directly with them as it will not be an easy task. This work would not be possible without your faith, prayers and continued support. Thank-you!

 
Click on any child to learn more about them or visit our giving website at https:/give.icareafrica.org to see all the kids available for sponsorship.

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If I die tomorrow, I have no regrets!

Posted: March 4, 2020 by Patrice Miles in Uncategorized

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I was supposed to get up this morning at 5am and have my quiet time and then head to the gym …..that didn’t happen.

I was so tired last night that I went to bed at 8:30am and yet still couldn’t wake up to keep up with my new exercise regime. I want so badly to get this whole exercise and eating healthy routine down. It’s my constant battle and idol at times.

I love the way my body feels when I am in my routine of exercise and healthy eating. I have energy, my clothes fit great, I can eat what I want within reason and I am focused and alert. These things are all good but trying to do it all and shower before 8:30am when my first conference call with Nigeria starts, is taking away from my time with the Lord.

Screen Shot 2019-08-19 at 5.16.32 PMI need, crave, and must have this time with him. It’s where the legalism, stress and busyness all get put aside and the beautiful women he created comes out. I think, dwell, and hear so much during that time. It is so beautiful compared to my to do list and stress of diet and exercise.

I am reading Jackie Chan’s Crazy Love and Ecclesiastes right now. Both talk about how short life is and how we need to enjoy it more. So, when I stress over diet and exercise, I get mad because if I die tomorrow then what was all the restricting of delicious food and getting up early to work out worth. No, I don’t want to be miserable while I am on this earth. I don’t want to be uncomfortable in my clothes or tired and lethargic from eating Krispy Kreme doughnuts every day.

So where is the enjoyment of life but self-control of the flesh?

How do you complete the to do’s but not stress over the who, what , when and how so you sleep well?

How do you enjoy every person, place and thing you experience today whether it is good, bad, stressful, annoying or mediocre?

How do you say, “If I die tomorrow, I have no regrets?”

Screen Shot 2020-03-03 at 4.37.17 PMI think for some people it is easier than others.

An “S” on the DISC profile or a 9 on the Enneagram (Peacemaker). I am sure you find these things much easier as God created you with a must softer, sensitive, laid back personality.

But what about people like me? The “D” in DISC and 3 on Enneagram (Achiever). I naturally wake up early every morning needing to Dominate, Direct, Accomplish and Shine.

 

I would love to know how you have found the happy-medium ground in your life…….

How do you balance life on earth with an eternal focus?

How do you live life comfortably saying “If I die tomorrow, I have no regrets!”

I know none of us can honestly say we are 100% there but what have you done or are doing to get there? Please share with us all so we can learn from each other and grow!

“There are so many opportunities to serve here in Egbe that would really make a difference and nobody really knows.” This was the topic of conversation when I visited Egbe a few weeks ago. Since I left Egbe, Nigeria in 2017 for Jos, Nigeria, the ministries there have been growing as fast if not faster than C.A.R.E. Africa. It was amazing to see them all a few weeks ago and hear the needs. From teachers, music instructors, medical doctors and nurses, to robotics, auto mechanics and construction the needs are plenty.

As I was putting together the C.A.R.E. Africa flyer for the Mobilizing Medical Missions conference I am attending in Houston this week, I was encouraged to share with you the opportunities to serve in Egbe short term and long term. See the list below and please tell everyone you know that God can use the gifts he has given them to make a difference in this small town of Egbe, Nigeria. Email me for more information at patrice.miles@sim.org.

Pray for our team from C.A.R.E. Africa and also ECWA Hospital Egbe this weekend as we scout out Houston at the M3 Mobilizing Medical Missions Conference for volunteers wanting to answer the call of Matthew 28:19 to go and make a difference.

                                                                    
C.A.R.E. Africa
Nurse Educator
ElementarySchool Teachers & Trainers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ECWA Hospital Egbe
Family Medicine Physician 
Ophthalmologist
Dentist
Physical Therapist

Anesthetist & Nurse Anesthetist
OBGYN Specialty Surgeons
Physician Assistant
Hospital Administrator
Construction Manager
Maintenance Manager
Electrician
Plumber
Auto Mechanic
Hospitality Manager

 

 

 

 

 

 

Centenary Computer Center & Music Academy
Music Instructors
Art Instructors
Computer Teachers
Hardware Engineering
Robotics Teachers
Stem Advisor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fulani Bush Camps
Elementary School Teachers & Trainers

Words and pictures cannot describe the fruitfulness of our 1st trip of 2020. God used all of us and the gifts he has given us to encourage all the kids, caregivers and staff at C.A.R.E. Africa and Foundations Academy. Take a peak below and pray about joining us on my next trip in June. Email me at patrice.miles@sim.org for more details.

Another beautiful post by Titi!!

via It’s Our Testimony Not A Source Of Frustration. — Plantains Please

It’s dark in here. The shadows slowly creep in.

Its slithering tentacles slowly wrapping itself around the last of my resolve. It’s hard to open my eyes, it’s dark in here.

My heart is racing, pumping useless adrenaline through my body, increasing my crippling anxiety. The part of me that is of the darkness fights the light and I struggle as I will not give in to the darkness.

But for how long? How long before the shadows seep into my unconscious self?    How long before I lose myself?

Why is this so hard? Why can’t the whole of me desire the light? I need it, this light.

Of what use are my desires anyways? They sing to the messengers of the dark like a siren’s song craving destruction, seeking to drag me to my demise and away from whom I have only ever bared my soul to.

He who showed me what it means to love, the one who I engaged with in pure love. I want it, this light.

The one that completes me, the dregs of my being cry out for him and his light. My nothingness cries out for his fulfillment, my heart longs for moments not clouded with sin.

My will falls apart everyday, it’s harder to build it back up. I crave it, this light from my savior.

Is our choice between life and death, a blessing or curse? My dejected self longs for destruction, my flesh is the epitome of foolishness as it continues to crave misery. It is a constant battle, draining and exhausting.

Yet I will keep fighting to see and live in his light, this light will permeate through the darkness of my heart.

Ara mi gbōn, okan mi gbògbé, iye mi wuwó! sugbon otí mumi larada!

(My body is weak, my heart bleeds, my mind is heavy but you have saved me!)

Fear not, my dejected self, if only you would completely surrender. For the thick and deep shadows fail to stop his light from shining through.

One day! One day! He will come back and we will forever be free from this growing weight.

It is a testimony, It is your testimony, embrace it for He embraces you- the whole of you.

books donation 2Starting January 2020, our school started an after school reading program. Many of our children are behind in reading due to lack of an education or the quality of the education they were receiving before they came to us. A few days after starting the reading program we received a call from the hospital that we had boxes to pick up that had come on the last container shipped from the USA. We were so encouraged and surprised to find a large donation of children’s books!

afterschoolThe next day our staff went through all the books. There were so many that we are having more shelving built for the library. The icing on the cake was that there were multiples of the same books. This may not sound like anything special, but for us it was! Now, at the after school reading program, all the kids can have the same book and read along as others read. This will help speed up their reading and comprehension skills as they are able to follow along and not just have to listen or read on their own.

We are so grateful for this donation and encourage anyone and everyone that has books they would like taken off their hands. We will take them!! Email patrice.miles@sim.org.