Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judaea:

Friends, the Bible says, can be closer than brothers (relatives).  I think it is because you can choose your friends.  Rarely do I see someone who is best friends with someone related to them.

That being said, Christian brothers are some of my best friends.  Friends share each other’s passions and pain.  Friends are quick to come to each other’s relief.

When other people are suffering, I suffer.  The Bible clearly tells us about notplugging our ears to the cries of desperate people.  Knowing that there is someone suffering keeps me up at night.

Thank you so much for all the relief work we can do because of your donations!  Amazing how many lives have been impacted.  Your donations may have even saved a life or two.

This week we have been helping with the people washed out by hurricane Nate.  One poor family lost all 15 of their cows.  Those cows and the mud hut where they lived were their only possessions.  When floods like that happen there are more stories like that along the path of the flood waters.  Media says around 24 people drowned and 27 missing.

This is a story from today about 4 of the 27 missing:

Juan de Dios and Family-

As the rains were coming down from Tropical Storm Nate, Juan de Dios was safely in his home with his wife and 2 boys by Bat River (Rio Murcielego) on the Pacific Coast of Nicaragua.

At 4 am, water from the swollen Bat River rushed through the only door of his humble home.  He saved his family by kicking out the back wall.  His wife’s leg was injured, and his youngest son almost drowned in the process, but he was able to keep his family alive by floating with the current together.  They were washed upon a hill down stream.  They were stranded there for 14 hours until a fire boat came and saved them.

Juan de Dios was a successful man by Tola Ojochal standards.  He was a home owner.  He had a large crop of beans ready to harvest, a small patch of corn doing well.  He owned 4 horses and 60 chickens.

The river took everything he owned except his family of 4, 6 chickens and the small patch of corn.  Everything else he had was washed out to the pacific ocean.

Because his family was swept away, the Tola authorities declared his whole family formally ‘missing’.

Today I drove by this noble and happy man with his small family.  God, I believe, prompted me to stop and talk to them.  I found out that even a week later, all they had were some sticks attempting to fashion a shack.

Their happiness and joy really convicted me.  He was so happy and thankful a week later simply because his family had survived:  I was so convicted.  This guy had nothing but his health, his family, and his faith.  Seven days of nothing!

ANF has provided food, cloth, pallets, clothing for hundreds of families.  Between Samaritan International’s food and transportation, and the food and supplies donated by ANF we were able to get Juan de Dios and family way ahead of the game.  Thank you Ulrik Leah Y Lauren Oldenburg for letting us work out of Hacienda Iguana.

We fortunately have been able to provide much relief like this, working with other groups.

God knows.  His eyes are on the sparrow.  He is with the grieving parents.  He is with the hungry and cold victims.  And He delights when He sees us actually sending relief to them.

Thank you FRIENDS!
Dean Peters

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