Archive for the ‘Missionaries’ Category

It’s home assignment time again! So, what exactly is home assignment?

cousingirlsCason says “ It’s when we take a break from missionary work and visit family and friends and get to relax.” Jolie says “It’s our time we spend with our family and have fun.”

I am sure it looks different for every missionary family. This will be our third home assignment as we complete six years in Nigeria. The last two home assignments were very stressful as both times we arrived with a financial deficit of over $2,000 a month. This deficit meant we had to spend our home assignment fundraising at a high level before we could return to Nigeria.

IMG_6401In between the fundraising we tried to find time for:
1. Family and friends.
2. Needed doctor visits
3. Needed dentist visits
4. Restock on personal supplies for Nigeria.
5. Counseling, debriefing and spiritual renewal
6. Rest
7. New donors
8. Collecting resources for the ministry.
9. Shopping for needed clothing for the family
10. Eating everything we wouldn’t be able to have again for another two years.

We are blessed that this home assignment we are not arriving with a financial deficit. This will allow breathing room for more time reconnecting with family and friends, resting and re-envisioning what God wants for our family for the next two year term.

God has made it very clear that for the health and vitality of our family this home assignment needs to be longer than the chaotic three months spent on the road. We don’t know exactly what that looks like. We are asking you to pray along with us for clarity as to God’s plans for “Miles In Missions”. The video we made below will more fully explain the journey God has us on. Home assignment here we come!

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Yankari National Park, Bauchi State

Posted: March 27, 2019 by Patrice Miles in Miles In Missions, Missionaries, Nigeria

Last week was Cason and Jolie’s Spring Break. We decided to take an adventure to Bauchi state with several other missionary families and go to Yankari National Park. Since we moved to Nigeria we have heard so many great stories from missionaries about their great memories at Yankari National Park. Well…. I can say that we will definitely have memories that no one in our family will ever forget. The trip was a lot of fun because we went with great people and swimming in the natural springs that we basically lived in for two days was amazing. Although, accomodations, food, and service were questionable…HAHA! We made it, survived, and got the T-shirt!

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Safari

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Our Safari Guide

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Roan Antelope

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Warthogs

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Kilishi, Nigerian Beef Jerky

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Flat Tire

IMG_4266Every child should have the best chance for a successful future. But too many children in Nigeria aren’t getting the opportunity to reach their full potential.  These children eventually succumb to begging, lying and stealing to make ends meet because of so many economic barriers in their environment. You can help change that by sponsoring a child through C.A.R.E. Africa. Your sponsorship will give these children the gift of hope and a brighter future.

Nigeria ranks the highest in out-of-school children globally. Even though primary education is officially free and compulsory, about 13.8 million of the country’s children aged 5-14 years are not in school. 

All children, no matter where they live or what their circumstances, have the right to a quality education.  C.A.R.E. Africa supports children through “family based care” which allows them to remain in a family unit.  We provide them with an education and teach them about the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

DSC_0433When you sponsor a child, you achieve a special kind of giving that creates a relationship between you and the community where our C.A.R.E. Africa staff are helping to change the future. Sponsorship provides essential aid and education to the impoverished and improves the well-being of single and double orphans. It gives you the opportunity to see lives transformed. 

We have several children waiting for you. Through child sponsorship, you can be the hero in the life of a child today. You can make sure they grow up healthy, educated, safe and in a family.

Learn more about these beautiful children awaiting sponsorship by clicking on any of their pictures below or visiting our giving webpage at http://give.icareafrica.org

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Why is it that the first question after being introduced is always “so what do you do”?

45328000_10156746330298808_3825232954834026496_nIn the missionary world we are excited to talk about the great things we are involved in and how God is working in our ministry. We list the programs we offer, how many churches we have planted, how many widows, orphans and vulnerable people we have helped.

But we are so much more than what we do…..or are we?

The deceptive attitude that our worth is proportional to our job title or our achievements is predominantly found in Western culture. For the Western worker it means that hard work and more productivity leads to a promotion or a raise. For the missionary it means our accomplishments will lead to increased donations. Somehow our work has become our search for meaning in our life. In the process – many of us have forgotten who we really are and what brings joy to our lives.

Group-of-workersThe cashier, bank teller, missionary, doctor, construction worker and waitress are people with actual lives. They all have passions, goals, struggles, interests, hobbies, families, and qualities that define them and make them who they are. Everyone is more than their job, whether it’s the most admirable career worldwide, or a temporary position. We are all “something” but we are also “someone.” There’s a difference!

 

13416885_10154174756783808_3829576414355949085_oI would like to introduce myself to you.

My American name is Beth Patrice Miles. Beth in Hebrew means house, a strong structure. My Yoruba name is Modupe which means Gratefulness.

I am a child of God, daughter, mother, wife, friend, blogger, deep thinker, prayer warrior, Jesus believer, avid reader, clothing designer, honest to a fault, no filter, baker, coffee lover, innovator, sugar addict, visionary, question asking, exercise loving and don’t reinvent the wheel if someone has already done it -kind of girl.

I am a 3 on the Enneagram (The Achiever) an INFJ (The Advocate) on the Myers Briggs a DIC on the DISC test.

I had a complex childhood and my teenage and college years were not without their problems. I now live in Nigeria with two amazing kids, two dogs and a husband who loves me more than I deserve. My heart is big but there is a wall which only a few have climbed over. I am never satisfied unless I am helping someone or something grow or improve.

Missionary is what I do but I am so much more than that!

Who are you?

John 12:12 ~ child of God.
Ephesians 1:7 ~ forgiven.
John 15:16 ~ chosen.
Romans 6:6~ no longer a slave.
Genesis 1:27 ~ created in the image of God.
Jeremiah 1:5 ~ set apart and appointed.
1 Peter 2:9 ~ royal priesthood, God’s special possession.
John 15:15~ friend of God.
Ephesians 2:10~ God’s handiwork.
Philippians 3:20~ citizen of heaven.
Romans 8:37~ conqueror.
Psalm 139:14 ~ fearfully and wonderfully made.
2 Corinthians 5:17~ a new creation.
Ephesians 1:13 ~ marked with his seal.

Next time you meet someone and they ask you what you do, tell them who you are!

 

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“You chose the wrong girl God!”

I can only imagine that this was what Mary thought when she was pregnant with Jesus or when Queen Esther was told by her Uncle to save the Jews.

“You chose the wrong girl God!”

2018 was a hard year. Many times I felt inadequate to handle this missionary life. From problems in the ministry, to wondering if everything would collapse, fatigue and sickness that made me want to curl up and die, seeing needs without the finances to help, spiritual warfare taking its toll on my staff and having absolutely no clue what to do. I truly was stripped of everything I thought was important and my bare branches were exposed.

“You chose the wrong girl God!”

tumblr_static_winter_tree_by_epickittyness-d3dpj76“In spiritual winters, our fullness is thinned so that, undistracted by our giftings, we can focus on our character. In the absence of anything to measure, we are left with nothing to stare at except for our foundation. We begin to examine the motivations that support our deeds, the attitudes that support our words, the dead wood otherwise hidden beneath our busyness. Abundance may make us feel more productive, but emptiness has greater power to strengthen our souls.” Anonymous: Jesus Hidden Years…..my new favorite book!

In using my own strength to determine what I could or couldn’t do I inadvertently had removed God from the equation. Yes I loved Him, Yes I believed in Him, Yes I trusted Him and of course I spent time with Him everyday talking to Him about all these things.

So how did I get here?

How do I get out of it?

Look at how weak I am!

Look at my unbelief and how easily I am distracted and lose focus on You!

Why did You choose me to represent You to the lost when I am evidently lost myself.

2 Corinthians 12:9-11 But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Helplessness tests us and reveals what is really in our hearts. Dependence on God not self reliance is the true friend of our soul.

45328000_10156746330298808_3825232954834026496_n“My daughter, you are weak and that is why I chose you. Strength is not given, it is grown. Through Me you will help grow My kingdom and change lives. I chose the right girl!”

Personally, I do not know whether my dreams will be fulfilled or if my sweat, tears and prayers are just planting seeds for someone else to watch bloom. I do not know if like Esther, one day God will say, “I rose you up for just a time as this,” or if, like Mary the mother of Jesus, I will wait and watch my dreams be crucified before they know resurrection. I do not know……but then being all-knowing, is not my job.

Continue to pray for me and my family as we serve in Nigeria. If you would like to become a prayer partner and receive our weekly prayer requests click Prayer Partner. 

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I will give thanks to you, Lord, with all my heart;
I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
Psalms 9:1

2018 was a very fruitful year for C.A.R.E. Africa and we give all the thanks and glory to our Lord and Savior! When we look back at our 2018 goals, and check off every single one, our hearts are overflowing with thankfulness to God. Without him stirring people’s hearts to support us prayerfully, financially and physically, none of this would have been possible.

If you followed our blogs you know that 2018 was also a very hard year for us. Spiritually we experienced attacks like never before. Honestly, we were not prepared and that is why 2019 we will be better equipped. Watch for our upcoming blog announcing our 2019 theme and goals for C.A.R.E.

Join us to thank the Lord for what he fulfilled in 2018.
1. Foundations Academy Egbe primary school opened.
2. Monthly sports outreach started.
3. Began weekly Egbe community search for the vulnerable.
4. Three children graduated secondary school and one was accepted to University.
5. First, annual, one-week kids camp held. Three children accepted Christ.
6. First, annual, staff spiritual retreat held in Miango.
7. C.A.R.E. van purchased for children, staff and team transportation.
8. Hired an AWANA director who will also serve in pastoral care.
9. Two USA teams traveled to Egbe. They were instrumental in the school renovation and the TIV outreach.
10. Water well project for TIV camp started.
11. Significant increase in sale of C.A.R.E. products in USA
12. Caregiver microfinance program started. It is designed to support entrepreneurship and alleviate poverty.

As of today we have 55 children and 45 caregivers/foster parents registered in our programs. 

As we continue to walk faithfully please join us in prayer for the new year and new opportunities it will present.

 

DSC_0340At C.A.R.E. Africa we conduct one on one interview sessions with anyone who completes an application and meets our criteria. We use these one on one sessions to evaluate the applicant’s personal character and to see if what they filled out on the application several months ago is the same story they are telling us today. This process helps us separate those who would deceive us from those who are truly vulnerable women and children needing our help. After the interview we visit the home of the applicant. Their living situation will truly tell us if they are in need or not.

DSC_0268 (2)In July of this year C.A.R.E. Africa was conducting one of it’s interview sessions with a woman named Mrs Adeyemi. She had completed an application over a year ago. We had tried to call her but her number wasn’t working. Recently, her son tracked us down and gave us a note that read “Please help me, I want to go to school.” During the interview Mrs Adeyemi and her son were very quiet. Her body looked malnutritioned and her son, Michael, did not look well either. We visited their home and were saddened to see their living conditions. Inside was a 10×10 room that she and her two children slept in. The two mattresses were soaking wet and mold was growing up the walls. The smell was so bad I couldn’t even walk inside. I immediately wanted to take them into our program but at C.A.R.E. Africa we have a policy that we will do more research and pray for 30 days before taking anyone in.

DSC_0271 (2)My staff began their research. Mrs. Adeyemi’s neighbors reported that she would walk up and down the street yelling at them and used abusive language. Another neighbor explained how she was the second wife to a man in Lagos, Nigeria. He occasionally came to visit but didn’t take care of her or the children. We even heard that her husband was bringing marijuana for her to sell in Egbe. Overall the reports were not good and our staff were reconsidering taking her and Michael in.

What would people in the town say about C.A.R.E. Africa if they knew we were supporting a woman who shouted at her neighbors and sold marijuana?

What would our supporters think of their donations to our ministry if they heard about this woman?

Should we help them?

When consulting one of our Reverends in Egbe about the situation we were encouraged by his words. “You should definitely help her! She has probably never been shown Christ’s love before. You don’t know what this gift of support will do to her character and heart.”

b7157fe1-537c-4294-9f2f-7737925d0087We are happy to say that God has been using C.A.R.E. Africa and three sponsors to show Christ’s love to the Adeyemi family. We were able to fix up the 10 x 10 room they live in, buy new mattresses and bed posts, fix the roof so water will not enter into the room and also fix Mrs. Adeyemi’s grinding machine so she can be empowered. Michael is in school now and doing well and we will mentor and disciple his mother. Please pray for Mrs. Adeyemi that thru this ministry she will hear the gospel message and know that Jesus Christ loved her and died for her so that she might truly live! This is a story of the real Christmas message. Thank-you for us make this happen.

Have you thought about sponsoring a child or a family? Please consider 2019 to be the year to do so. Visit our giving page at https://give.icareafrica.org to see all the children in need. Bose is our most emergency situation as her family needs sponsorship ASAP. You can visit her page at https://give.icareafrica.org/careafrica/bose