Keep it simple.

(Jesus said) "DO NOT judge and criticize and condemn others, so that you may not be judged and criticized and condemned yourselves." Matthew 7:1 (Amplified Bible) 

A wonderful tool that the Internet has is giving you the ability to search Scripture with many different versions of the Holy Bible.  I have never read the Amplified Bible version, but it provided a few more words to think about when reading Matthew 7:1. 

I have been criticized for helping children in Haiti; some think that it is just wasting money.  Some synodical purists have chastised me because Trinity/HOPE programs feed children in schools which are predominantly Lutheran, but also have programs in a few other Christian denominations.  There are also those who consider Trinity/HOPE not doing enough as they are not paying teacher salaries, building schools and purchasing vehicles for principals, school busses and generators and also in the well digging business.  

Trinity/HOPE has a very simple and successful approach to helping Christian schools prepare young children to become missionaries; we provide them with a daily nutritionally meal.  Not a snack of North American peanut butter and crackers, suckers or candy bars that some Mission teams have brought.  We provide them with a hot meal of rice and beans, the National food of Haiti.  It is that simple, we feed children; His children. 

If you sell fried chicken, don’t add pizza to your menu.  If you drive a GMC truck, don’t put Dodge mud flaps on the back end.  Do the very best with the very best gifts that He has given you.  Kelly Downing is a friend of mine who shared an analogy of comparing a ministry to the Platte River that flows from west to east through Nebraska.  A mile wide and a foot deep in the springtime; Kelly remarked that a ministry going in too many different directions is like the Platte River, no substance, a mile wide and shallow. 

God gives each of us a direction and the means to serve Him in this lifetime.  The children who attend the Christian school in Lauture are some of the children attending this school in the Jacmel district.  They are thankful for the education, food and the fact that they have a Savior and no longer fear the vodou priest.  Don’t criticize what your brother is doing if he is using God’s provisions in a healthy way and not wasting those gifts or using them for self-serving gain and pride.  Not sure why people criticize, but at least they are not killing, just complaining, blaming and pointing a finger at what isn’t their idea or direction.  I suppose that we all do that from time to time.  I read a quote recently that was attributed to a famous trial lawyer, Clarence Darrow, who once said, “Everyone is a potential murderer."  About himself, he admitted, "I have not killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction out of obituary notices."  We are all critical; please just take a hard look at your problems before finding fault with others. 

Thankfully God is not like many in this sinful world, and doesn’t complain about how Trinity/HOPE is feeding children; He continues to bless the program and bring more and more children into the schools so they can share the saving message of His Son to the lives in Haiti that are still chained to the vodou priest. 

Dear Heavenly Father, you have called your servants to ventures of which we cannot see the ending, by paths as yet untrodden, through perils unknown.  Give us faith to go out with good courage, not knowing where we go but only that your hand is leading us and your love supporting us through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.  Amen.  

May God be with you…Jay