THE DIVINE RIPPLE EFFECT
by Doug Isch, LSM President
Loving Shepherd Ministries helps the world’s most vulnerable children reach their God-given potential. We rejoice that our Christ-centered programs are helping to transform the lives of hundreds of kids in Haiti, Ethiopia and the U.S. By God’s grace, we are raising up country-changers for Christ who impact communities and churches. We call this a “divine ripple effect.” What do we mean?
We mean that by empowering just one vulnerable child or family, a ripple effect of blessings spread. The painful pasts and hardship of those we serve makes them more aware of God’s many blessings. They see how He graciously provides, and they see the opportunity to bless others. By reflecting the sacrificial and multiplying love of Jesus Christ, they take what God first gave them and share it! We know that one act of service, one conversation, or one prayer can touch many lives. Now just imagine the amazing ripple effect of over 500 children being raised to serve, witness, and pray. The impact will be felt for generations!
We praise God that those who were once vulnerable are now serving others for Christ. In their gratefulness, their hearts cry out, “Here I am Lord – use me!” The Lord responds by giving them opportunity to minister and make an impact for the Kingdom. Through serving others and boldly proclaiming the Good News, they are a blessing because they themselves have been greatly blessed!
“By empowering just one vulnerable child or family, a ripple effect of blessings spreads to others.”
YOU SHALL BE WITNESSES:
A TESTIMONY OF JESUS IN ETHIOPIA
Our Family Preservation program in Ethiopia serves more than 175 children and their mothers. Each family’s story includes desperation and heartache. This is Bekele’s story of embracing God’s gift of salvation and sharing her testimony with countless others.
Bekele grew up in a poor Muslim family. Her parents enrolled her in a Christian church program to receive aid and support when she was 7 years old, where she learned about Jesus. One day Bekele accepted Jesus as her Savior and her life changed forever. In one singular moment, she gained both her salvation and lost her family. Bekele shares, “My family was very angry with me for rejecting my Muslim upbringing and made several attempts to separate me from the church. The decision to follow Jesus Christ caused me to lose the love of my parents.” For years, her parents shunned Bekele. To restore peace, she eventually agreed to marry a Muslim man but soon had great remorse. Her husband was addicted to khat (a local drug) and was abusive. He eventually abandoned her and their two children. Now all alone with no husband and no supportive family, she felt God was angry with her for marrying a non-Christian. In her desperation, God led Bekele and her children to our LSM staff, who warmly welcomed them into our Family Preservation program.
Bekele soon found healing and restoration with God. She received Christian counseling, business training and life skills, while her kids received Christian discipleship and school support. Through our program, Bekele realized God hadn’t abandoned her and had plans for her to bless others for His Kingdom!
Bekele Shares Jesus, The True Son of God, With Her Muslim Family And Her Ethiopian Community
Bekele’s story includes the ripple effect it had in her family and community. She grew in faith and boldly testified about God’s Son. Her witness resulted in Bekele’s oldest sister leaving the Muslim faith to become a Christian! Our Ethiopia staff shares, “Bekele has been a role model and an inspiration to many single mothers in our program and within her community.” Thanks for your support which makes this possible!
*name changed for privacy
Bekele shares, “I feel blessed because God did not abandon me but instead paved the way for me to return to His Kingdom and share the Gospel!”
LSM TECH: LEADERS & DISCIPLES IN HAITI
Student attending electrical class.
At LSM Tech, our Home of Hope students are grateful for God’s provision in their lives. Because of their difficult pasts, they greatly appreciate the opportunity to further their education and be discipled. With less than 1% of high school graduates in Haiti being able to attend college or trade school, they are thankful for this rare opportunity. That is why we also extend this blessing to youth in the community who cannot afford to attend college. Each year, scholarships are granted to 20 students who demonstrate a strong desire for discipleship and continued education and who are eager to make a difference in their country.
The students at LSM Tech have also formed a youth group called “Our Time.” This group of both Home of Hope and community students meet once a week to pray, to discuss ways to improve their country, and even to plan service projects like book drives to increase literacy. We are thankful that students at LSM Tech are becoming leaders whose impact will ripple out to help change Haiti for Christ!
PRAY FOR LSM
Pray for our LSM Tech students as they continue their growth toward becoming Christ-centered leaders in Haiti.
Pray for our FAMILY PRESERVATION PROGRAM IN ETHIOPIA as single mothers and their children are being empowered to share their faith.
Pray for our BRICKHOUSE PROGRAM in the U.S. to impact at-risk foster youth with God’s healing love.
YOUR PARTNERSHIP gives vulnerable children a chance to have hope in Jesus. We can’t do this without you. Will you join us?
TO GIVE: Donate online at: loving-shepherd.org/give (Please select Spring 2023 Newsletter in the “What Prompted My Donation” dropdown.)
LSM BRICKHOUSE PROGRAM
Our BrickHouse program helps local at-risk youth in foster or adoptive families to reach their God-given potential. We walk alongside these vulnerable children and their families with mentoring and Christian counseling, so they find healing and hope for a better future. As a result, they can positively impact their local community.
LSM once again earned a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator, the nation’s largest, most respected evaluator of charities. Charity Navigator objectively analyzes thousands of nonprofits on financial health and accountability. This 4-star designation, the highest rating possible, means we exceed industry standards. Less than 1 in 4 U.S. nonprofits receive the rating.