are no mountains without valleys. No ups without downs. No joy without
tears. No life without death. No growing without cutting. No healing
without pain. No disciplining without hurt. No repairing without breaking.
No remodeling without taking apart. You lose your life to gain it.
You humble yourself to be lifted up. You give to get. You sow to reap.
You die to live.
is the kingdom of our God.
out for the good of those who love Him. Our heavenly Daddy always
has our best interest in mind. He sees the end from the beginning;
He knows the future as He knows the present; He has great destiny
and purpose for each one of us. Those of us who've prayed "use
me" and "whatever the cost" need to be ready for
the His answer, because it might not look the way we expected it
or wanted it. The path to glory is covered by ugly stuff, and He
will watch carefully to see how serious we were when we prayed those
dangerous prayers. Will we continue on, or stop, or even turn back?
Will we miss God, miss His great plan for our lives, because the
journey was too hard? The path to glory means refinement, again
and again, for more impurities to be burned out, for the gold to
become more and more pure, for His glory to shine more and more.
Stay in the furnace! Trust your heavenly Daddy and don't run from
the fire, even if it's not what you expected! ,
When I left
Mali on Jan 10 to go to the US for two weeks, I was in very bad
shape - physically, emotionally and spiritually. Seven months had
passed since the kids had moved into the house with me. For months
I had only had 4-5 hours of sleep per night, my body finally breaking
down at Christmas. The tiredness and weakness led to emotional weariness
and inability to cope properly with the crises of life and demands
of a growing ministry, and in the end the sum of it all threatened
to choke all spiritual life out of me.
For many months
(even years) I've been crying out to the Lord for HELP, for the
workers to be sent into the harvest. As a forerunner, I am ploughing
the ground for others to follow. With the ministry expanding, I'm
unable to raise up locals quickly enough to delegate tasks to. If
I'm the only one with a driver's licence, guess who is going to
do the driving. If I'm the only one who can teach the children,
guess who's going to teach the children. And the list goes on.
the Lord heard my cries. Today we have a teacher, and Seybou
finished driving school and got this licence.
Lord heard all my cries. By now my internet connection
is good enough to use SKYPE effectively, which means I can talk
to people like on the phone for free or for very little money (when
calling a phone). There is no more reason not to call my friends
in the US and Europe and have the fellowship I cannot have with
Lord heard my cries for meaningful relationships, for good
friends, for spiritual fathers, for mentors, for people to look
up to and get input from, for people who would truly stand with
me and not forsake me. I've been amazed at how He's done that these
past two weeks.
Lord heard my cries for provision. Several awesome things
are in the initial stages; things that might become huge, but are
too early to share. Solomani finally has a sponsor, nearly 2 months
after we took him in (while Eli is still waiting). And God is setting
things in place for our half-a-million-dollar construction project.
I know from the beginning that I'd just be holding the hand of my
heavely Daddy and watch Him do the impossible, and it's starting
Lord heard my cries for more wholeness, for more healing,
for more Christ-likeness. In fact, He allowed all the tiredness
and weakness to have the dross come to the surface and deal with
it. I had to see myself as really I was, and allow my heart to be
broken over it. God loves those with a contrite heart, and as I
declared bankruptcy, He knew just what to do to answer my cries.
OF RESTORATION IN DAYTON, OHIO
are you really talking about, Claudia???
On Dec 2 I returned
from Ghana - a trip that will be a milestone in the history of the
work in Mali, as its significance becomes more and more obvious,
its size already blowing me away, leaving me totally amazed at the
way God orchestrated it all. In Ghana the Lord gave me keys; keys
that will be instrumental in bringing healing and wholeness to the
people of Mali and beyond. But the Lord also unlocked my own heart
in Ghana during the one theophostic session I had with Bill, a member
of the American team, and the repressed memory that came up was
I returned to
Mali and all that ugly stuff came up through the now unlocked door.
I knew I was approaching a breakdown, but it was the Lord's doing,
because He loves me so much He doesn't me to stay the same. Remember,
I had prayed the dangerous prayers - "make me more like Jesus,
whatever the cost".....
So the Lord
orchestrated everything for me to be able to go to Dayton, where
Bill lives, and have 4 days of intense ministry, 20 hours of receiving
theophostic prayer ministry. I was desperate, I wanted to be rid
of all that dross that had come up, and He heard my cries.
He did an amazing work in me during those 4 days, each
day getting more intense, but also with more victories. I wrote
a poem that reflects on what God did. It's on my blog page, and
you can read it by clicking here;
it's worth it. Today I'm not the same person who left Mali just
over 2 weeks ago.
In Kansas City
(where I went from Ohio) I spent the whole 2-hour service in my
church in His presence, lying on the floor, as He with so much love
showed me how He was breaking this nice vessel I was, though with
impurities, to make a much more beautiful vessel out of it, lovingly
removing all impurities. You can read the details of what He showed
me by clicking here.
If you would
like to know more about theophostic prayer ministry, please go to
FATHER TO THE FATHERLESS
Not only do
I have the most amazing Father in heaven, a perfect Father who meets
my every need, and whose love for me is so great I can hardly comprehend
or fully grasp it, but He also puts the lonely in families, He gives
earthly fathers to the fatherless, who He has a special love. The
body of Christ is sadly lacking the spiritual fathers He longs to
give, so that our churches are full of orphans who are desperate
for a father's love, and who look in all the wrong places.
I myself have
longed to have a father all my life, but every father I've ever
had was either a bad example and/or abandoned me. By the time I
left for Mali, Claudia was fatherless once again.
On this trip,
I've seen Him do an amazing thing in this area. Men that were already
in my life, men who have the Father's heart, as well as new men
the Lord sent into my life, received our heavenly Father's heart
for me for the first time or in a greater measure, so that I now
have several amazing men of God in my life that I look up to and
trust and who love me with His pure love. This means so much to
me, filling my heart with thanksgiving and praise.
most precious gift has been the man I can now call Daddy - the very
same Bill who I first met in Ghana, and who ministered to me in
Ohio. Bill is 71 years old, a man of God, who raises spiritual children
up all over the earth. I've rarely met someone like him who has
such a selfless God-like love. He now knows more about me than anyone
else on this earth, and he still loves me. Nothing i do or say will
change his love for me. Isn't that the way our heavenly Father loves?
Bill is a much-demanded man, who's been behind many men and women
of God helping them step into their destinies. He's a busy man who
loves the Lord and serving Him, and gives his whole life to that,
so that young people can barely keep up with him. And yet, he cleared
out his calendar to minister to me, his new daughter, for a few
days. May we all learn to love like HIM.
Ohio, the Lord spoke those simply little words to me: CHANGE OF
SEASON. His purpose was accomplished. The dross removed, the gold
refined, greater wholeness achieved, leading to greater holiness
and closeness to the Lover of my soul. The things that kept me from
going to the next level were gone. The weight that kept me from
going up was lifted, so that He was able to take His little daughter
by the hand and easily take the next step up together with me.
of season also became evident during my week in Pasadena, CA, for
the HIM pastors' retreat and prophetic conference. As a good prophetic
friend put it so aptly, I'm coming from obscurity into the shadows.
I really don't care to be in the light (meaning visible, known to
the public), but for the sake of Mali and the people in the nations
of West Africa, I'm willing. I'm willing to be one who will cry
out for those who have not had a voice, who are not heard, those
who cry out in desperation, to know God, but also to simply survive
physically. Who will speak up for them? Who will speak up for the
unreached peoples? Who will speak up for those who die daily in
countries nobody has ever heard of?
God has opened
new doors this past week. Leaders in HIM are starting to publicly
call me apostolic. I received a small supply of Mannatech vitamins
for our 40 malnourished children, and it's only a beginning. A team
of 6 young people is coming to Mali in May to do ministry, and one
of them is a film school graduate who is going to do a documentary
on what's happening in Mali. Prophetic words were spoken of our
kids going out in power to evangelize Mali. Prophetic words were
spoken of me being used as a carrier of revival to France. New connections
were made that could become profound in the future.
What an amazing
God we serve! I'm a very blessed child of the Most High. Yes, it's
because He loves me, but His purpose is so much greater. I believe
He's heard the cries of the people of Mali, of the unreached
peoples in West Africa, for many, many years, His heart breaking,
while looking across the earth for someone who will go to them,
not counting their lives as something worth keeping, but giving
it all for the sake of Christ and His kingdom. He just happened
to come across a little girl in Austria who prayed "here am
I, send me".
As I sit on
the plane writing these words, I'm filled with excitement about
returning home to Mali. I'm excited about the days ahead. I'm expecting
great things in the months to come. Every time I return from a trip,
there is increase and great fruit.
my cries to be changed and not return to Mali the same.
I can't wait to hug each one of my children, young and old, and
to have His love flow through me to them so they step into everything
God has for them. I'm so thankful that I was online every place
I stayed during my trip, which allowed me to talk to them with SKYPE
every single day. I realized in a new way how much I love them all,
and so did they. By now not only the kids call me Mama, but also
the adults. What a privilege to raise up children, and to change
a nation through them. We've seen the beginning of a cultural revolution.
In Mali parents don't ever speak positive words to their kids (they
think it makes them weak), nor do they ever show physical effection.
But my children are encouraged and praised every day, as well as
being hugged and held, and it is that love that will change the
Daouda, who stayed with us for a while, but had to leave
because he couldn't stop stealing? While I was gone, he came with
a few other kids to steal our car radio. A few days later the
police showed up with him and the radio at our house, returned
the radio, and put him in prison. He's 14 years old, and no child
should have to be in a Malian prison. My heart grieves for him,
and I want him to know that I love him no matter what. I intend
to go visit him in prison, though I know it will break my heart.
But for his sake I have to go.
father showed up at our house last Friday. Remember the
prayer alert I sent out when he came to our house in November,
ranting and screaming and threatening us. It is because of the
special relationship between people of certain family names, that
Paul was able to appease him. When he came back last week, he
said it's because of that, he won't call the police. He came only
because Fousseni's brothers would like to see him. We're now praying
and preparing the day when Paul will go with Fousseni to visit
so proud of Paul, who was in charge during my
absence. It's the first time he had to preach 3 Sundays in a row
(because Emma has been gone), and I heard he did an outstanding
job. He's learned well from his Mama to not lean on His understanding,
but to let Him direct his path and words, and people are amazed
as they listen to him preach. Yeah, God!
the past few weeks it has come to light that two of our children
are abusing other children sexually. Please pray for their willingness
to open their hearts and receive healing, as well as for protection
for our other children. We'll be doing intensive TPM sessions
with all children as well as adults in the weeks to come,
so that they can all receive mind renewal and freedom from the
hurts of the past. Pray for me to be the facilitator He wants
me to be.
for the legal advisor Daniel who will help us
get all our legal papers together. We need to
start two more organizations for everything to be in order. Please
pray for favor with the government, and quick resolution, as well
as wisdom as we write by-laws and bring required structure to
what God is doing.
have two significant visitors coming in a few
weeks, for a few days each. First the director of the German NGO
who manages our kids' sponsorships in Europe; it will be her first
time to see everything with her own eyes. And right after that
our American architect is coming to finalize the blueprints for
the first building phase, as well as look at the construction
site and meet our contractor/construction manager.
hoping to start construction in April, if the
governement truly finishes its preliminary work in March, as they've
said. So far only the money for the well is there, which is the
first thing to build anyway. The Lord has opened several possibilities
for financing this half-a-million-dollar project, and it will
take prayer for the "transfer of wealth" to happen.
Check the construction page on
my website for updates.
stand with us in faith believing for a new vehicle.
It's only a matter of time until our 20-year-old car breaks down
completely. We need a Toyota double-cabin pickup, so we can also
transport a lot more people in the back :-)
are going to the village of Dio every first week
of the month, staying over night and doing anything the Father
wants us to. Our pastor there, Enoch, told me that several of
the people who got saved at our last visit at Christmas would
like to be baptized. One of them is a mason, and is building a
baptismal in the courtyard. Enoch has asked me to do the baptism
with him when we come on the 7th of February.
We will also show the MATTHEW Jesus-film in Bambara.
making changes to my daily schedule and have
reordered my priorities, so I do get enough sleep, as well as
exercice, and to have some uninterrupted time instead of the constant
demands on me. Please pray for grace in this time of transition.
2007 is the
year of recovery. It's the year of movement. It's the year of visitation.
It's going to be a great year for the body of Christ. So I decree
over you recovery of what was lost; I decree that you will move
forward into greater measures of your destiny; and I decree a new
level of intimacy and visitations of heaven! AMEN!
Thank you for
standing with me, so that Mali and West Africa will come to the
knowledge of Christ and be filled with HIS GLORY!
the lover of my soul,
team and seven sponsored kids