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The long spoon………

I am blessed to receive numerous uplifting, encouraging and challenging email most days. One that often helps me is from a man called Pastor Tim Burt who writes a blog called Fresh Manna. You can see it at https://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

This morning I received the following from him. (Note he has previously granted me permission to reproduce his posts as long as I link back to his blog and acknowledge him as the source.)

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The Spoon That Feeds… (Author Unknown)

Long spoon

A man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and said, “Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like.”

The Lord led the man to two doors. He opened one of the doors and the man looked in. In the middle of the room was a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of stew which smelled delicious and made the man’s mouth water.

The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly. They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with very long handles and each found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful, but because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not get the spoons back into their mouths. The man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering.

The Lord said, “You have seen Hell.”

They went to the next room and opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the man’s mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and talking.

The man said, “I don’t understand.”

“It is simple” said the Lord, “it requires but one skill. You see, they have learned to feed each other. While the greedy think only of themselves.”

Galations 5:13
Gal 5:13 “For you have been called to live in freedom–not freedom to satisfy your sinful nature, but freedom to serve one another in love.”

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This in many ways is the philosophy behind Christian House Sitters.
Christians blessing each other and being blessed at the same time.

Those who are going on vacation get the blessing of having someone look after their home and pets free of charge

Those wanting a vacation get a rent-free house to live in.

Both parties are also blessed by knowing that they are helping another Christian.

For more information have a look at our website. CLICK HERE

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Better than the best. Keep safe.

I had a few minutes to spare so decided to Google “leaving house empty while on holiday” and I was astounded at the number of hits. As you can see it turned up 85 million articles so I feel sure this is an important topic.

Google screen shot

I naturally did not read them all.

I looked through a selection from the first page of Google hits and found a common theme.

The Good Housekeeping website nicely surmised the problem:

Over 80% of burglaries occur when a house is empty, so try to make your house look occupied when you’re out and when you’re away on holiday.

I knew the amount of burglaries was high but over 80% surprised even me.

burglar

I then looked at the statistics

UK Statistics
In the UK The Office for National Statistics figures on recorded crime show that there were 392,341 burglaries in 2014-15, while Home Office data shows only 54,466 arrests were made for burglary.

Remember 80% take place while homes are unoccupied. If a house is burgled looking at the official statistics there is a 1 in 14 chance the person will even be arrested.

So the chance of recovering your lost property is very low indeed.

USA Statistics
Here it is even worse according to the FBI there were an estimated 8,277,829 property crimes reported by law enforcement. Financial losses suffered by victims of these crimes were calculated at approximately $14.3 billion.

Just looking at those figures is enough to give anyone pause for thought.

The various sites then suggest all the normal things such as arranging for your mail to be diverted, putting your lights on a time switch, not telling people on social media that you are away, etc.safe-home1

But the best advice came from Home & Garden who said.
The best way to make sure your house is safe while you’re gone is to have someone you trust still living in it. You may be lucky enough to have a tidy and conscientious relative who’ll move in temporarily and water the plants, feed the pets and pick up the newspapers. If not, there are services you can use for house-sitting and pet-sitting while you’re away. This can be a pricey option, but it’s a solution that touches all the bases.

But we can offer you something even better!

Our service to Home Owners all over the world is FREE. Note Home and Garden said this is the pricey option but still the best.

Well we have removed the cost. You pay nothing to register, you pay nothing for a sitter. It is free!

Your risk of burglary drops by 80%
Your pets are looked after in their own home environment.
Your pot plants are watered.
And you end up blessing another family.

To find out more why not visit our website. CLICK HERE

If you have any other questions that are not answered on the website please use the contact page and I will do my best to answer you promptly.

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Featured in Sight Magazine

Posted on

The following is an article that appeared in SIGHT MAGAZINE AUSTRALIA on the 6th of July 2016

MY MISSION: A CHRISTIAN ALTERNATIVE TO FINDING A HOME AWAY FROM HOME (AND SUPPORTING CHILDREN IN KENYA AS YOU DO SO)

6th July, 2016

DAVID ADAMS

Sight Magazine Australia

Ray and Marilyn White, former owners of a Christian counseling centre in the UK, didn’t have the money to go on expensive holidays when they retired, meaning they had to find a way to do so – without paying full price.

Hearing about a house-sitting organisation which offered people the chance to look after someone’s else’s home while they were away, they registered and ended up living in a property in France for three months. While Dr White says it was a “wonderful experience”, they did have times of loneliness and couldn’t find a church. There were also some statues and other things left around the house which he says, as Christians, made them feel uncomfortable.
sightmag1
“Marilyn said that next time we should use a Christian organisation,” the South-African born 69-year-old recalls. “So we searched and could not find one anywhere. Marilyn therefore suggested we start one, which we did, and the result is Christian House Sitters.”

The organisation, which is based out of their home in Somerset, aims to bring together Christian home-owners and house-sitters by providing a website and email service which they can use to find each other.

“If you register as a home-owner, we help you find a house-sitter to move into your home while you are away on vacation,” says Dr White, who has previously worked in business, for Youth For Christ and as a pastor, and who still, as well as writing books, runs an “active preaching ministry” and takes seminars on subjects such as stress management for church groups.

“(The house-sitter) will look after your home and pets for you free-of-charge and in return they receive a rent-free vacation in your home. So, as an owner you save money by not having to pay anyone to look after your home and pets. You also have the security of knowing that your home and pets are being looked after by a responsible Christian.”
The benefits for those who register as house-sitters is also somewhat obvious – they “get to travel and stay rent-free in lovely homes all over the world rather than in expensive and, often characterless, hotel rooms”.
People wanting to advertise their house will have its details, excluding the exact address, listed on a protected area of the organisation’s website where registered would-be house-sitters can find them. All registered sitters are also emailed about the listing. Sitters can then register their interest with a particular property and their details are sent on to the home-owner. It’s then up to the home-owner to make contact, check references and arrange the ‘sit’ (a draft agreement is provided on the website).

Dr White says he and his wife insist that all who apply must be a member of a Christian church.

“We then email the pastor of their church and say that they have registered with us and given him as a reference,” he says. “We tell him that he can expect to be contacted by home-owners seeking a reference from him about these people. If he indicates that this is all satisfactory we register them. If they can’t supply these details or if the pastor is not willing to vouch for them, membership is refused.”

Properties listed range from apartments to large family houses with the length of time they are available anywhere from a week to a year, although between two to four weeks is more typical.
wds2

sightmag2

The profile of the house-sitters varies widely.

“We have families with children, single people, missionaries on furlough, ministers wanting a holiday that they can afford, retired people,” Dr White says.

More than 1,000 people have registered on the site since it commenced and current members live in 15 countries, mostly in Europe but also including Australia and New Zealand, the US and Canada.

While home-owners pay no fee to register on the site, sitters pay £25 (or equivalent) a year. All of this money is used to support a Christian children’s home in Kenya – The Home of Peace Children’s Home – which Mrs White took over the responsibility for raising funds for in 2010 after the UK church which had supported the organisation decided they could no longer continue to do so.

The Whites have since set up a registered charity – the TLC Children’s Trust – to raise funds for the home which is officially registered with the Kenyan Government.

Asked what they love most about running Christian House Sitters, Dr White says it’s the connections they make all across the globe.

“We love getting email from people all over the world telling us how God has used Christian House Sitters to enable them to have a holiday that they really needed but could not afford. Knowing we have made a real difference gives us a thrill.”

 

www.christian-housesitters.com

~ www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

 

End of the article.

VISIT OUR WEBSITE: CLICK HERE  (www.Christian-Housesitters.com)
God bless you,
Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

http://www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Where would you like to go? Rent-Free

I am often asked what sort of houses are available through Christian House Sitters and where they are located.

It is a really hard question to answer as the list changes all the time but to give an idea here is a selection of SOME of the houses available today on the site. Remember these are all offered Rent-Free.

NOTE I am not listing all the details for each house just some key points.

House in ClivedenENGLAND
The house is situated near Cliveden, Near to Burnham Bucks but on the border of Berkshire near Maidenhead and Windsor

The house is large and has 6 Bedrooms,.

Downstairs rooms including lounge, dining room, playroom, breakfast room and kitchen. The breakfast room is equipped with an Aga and usual kitchen appliances including Microwave, Washing machine and Dishwasher.

 

GUILDFORDGuildford
It is a large detached house set in a very quiet part of Guildford on the edge of a large area of countryside, but within easy access of the town and train station. The Guildford to London train takes just 40 minutes.

We are close to a number of National Trust properties and just 10 minutes from the famous RHS Wisley gardens.

Guildford is a very picturesque town with its own cathedral castle and many beautiful surrounding places of interest for all tastes.

The house comprises a large lounge, dining room, study, conservatory, kitchen and utility room alongside a double garage.

Upstairs are 4 bedrooms (1 double and 3 single)and 2 bathrooms ( 1 en suite) one of the bathrooms has a bath also.

The kitchen has a microwave, dishwasher and good storage space whilst the utility room houses the washing machine.

The lounge has a TV and the Internet connection is available along with the telephone.

FRANCESt Antonin Noble Val
4 months in a rural situation, it is quiet & clean with no near neighbours.

Near St Antonin Noble Val

There is a large garden, acres of woodland & meadows, fantastic walking from the door & loads of places to explore, local markets, ancient villages, stunning scenery.

 

CANADASaskatoon
Saskatoon
Located just 5 miles west of the city on an acreage.
5 bedrooms
Two baths shower and jet tub.
Kitchen fully equipped with microwave oven stove washer dryer.
We will make available a vehicle.
Wifi
TV and satellite

 

NEW ZEALANDGisborne
Gisborne
Our house is situated in an elevated position about 5 km from the city centre, overlooking the hills and the sea in the distance. The town is about 45 mins brisk walk. We have three beautiful beaches within five minutes drive of the house.

There are one double and one single bedroom, and one bathroom with shower and bath.

The kitchen has hob, oven, microwave, dishwasher, toaster, sandwich toaster, slow cooker, wok, washing machine.

Our car will be available for sitters to use while they are here.

AUSTRALIAMelbourne
Melbourne
We own a beautiful brick attic house, with spectacular landscape gardens, our backyard is a mini tropical paradise, a place for relaxation, reading or just enjoying the ambiance.

We live in sunshine, Melbourne, Vic Australia, in a quiet family orientated pocket of tree lined streets, that connect to a wonderful park, which has a bike, walking trail, and a place all the locals meet up with there canine friends, It is a very friendly community.

Our house is double story with living area on lower level, bedroom with ensuite on the top floor, and fully equipped gym room to use at leisure.

USAMount Rainer
Spanaway, Washington
The House is in Spanaway, Washington (state). By auto: one half hour South of Tacoma, one hour South of Seattle, 45 minutes from SeaTac (SEA, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport). The home is 4 years old. We are 3 minutes from a small shopping area (Safeway supermarket, Starbuck’s, restaurants, etc) and less than 15 minutes from a large mall with hundreds of businesses between here and the mall. We are about an hour from the entrance to Mount Rainier National Park. Our church is 2 miles and less than 5 minutes away

You could be enjoying a rent-free vacation in one of these or one of the many other houses that we get all over the world.

Also if you need someone honest, reliable and with references to look after your home and if necessary your pets while you are away. Even if you are not in one of our houses. We will help you find someone free-of-charge.
Have a look at our website www.Christian-housesitters.com

God bless you,

Ray

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

An Exciting Start to 2016

An Exciting Start to 2016

And a brief look at what God did during 2015

Christian House Sitters has 2 aims.
1. We want to help people all over the world enjoy vacations that they may not otherwise have been able to afford
2. We are part of the Registered Charity TLC Children’s Trust and 100% of our income goes to running a Children’s Home in Kenya.

Last year was often difficult BUT it has been a year with lots of blessings.

We helped hundreds of people to enjoy rent-free vacations.
We provided hundreds of people with someone to look after their home and pets free of charge while they were away.
We made amazing progress with the Children’s Home.

So as we begin 2016 I would like to share extracts from our New Year Newsletter that we sent to all our supporters. If you are interested in receiving these mailings in the future (we normally send about 4 a year) I will tell you how to get on the mailing list.

Here is a copy of our newsletter. You will see it was written by my wife, Marilyn.

Happy New Year.

Praise God Home of Peace is now an officially registered children’s home with the Kenyan Government Department of Children’s Services!

Our Girls in their new clothes

Some of our Girls in their new clothes

The past couple of months have been exciting, hectic, challenging and life changing for the children and staff at Home of Peace Children’s Home and for us back here in the UK.

You will no doubt remember that the authorities suddenly gave us a very short deadline to comply with all their requirements and apply for registration. At the time the task seamed impossible but with God nothing is impossible.

Since then we have built a dining room / study and equipped it with tables and chairs, built an additional 2 washrooms for the children so 10 children can wash at a time, installed a 3000 liter water storage tank and provided the home with 60 chickens so that the children can have a better diet with eggs included. But the really big challenges were having additional new dormitories built and equipped.

Thank you to all who have so faithfully prayed and given to enable this to happen.

There were so many things that we had put in place before we could even apply for registration but God answered our prayers. To refresh your memories here are some of the project that we asked you to pray for and give towards over the past year.

We needed:
To have a qualified Children’s Home Manager. Edward Wata became our manager and works for us three days a week.
We needed 2 new dormitories with staff rooms, a first aid room/ sickbay and a manager’s office/ counselling room. These have now been built and in order to save money they were built as a single complex.
We were required to build a new dining room/study. Once again God provided and this has been built and fitted with tables and chairs.
The authorities required 2 new large washrooms to be built. This has been done.
We had to install a water pump with pipes laid underground from the river to the property which is about 500 meters up to Home of Peace and into a 3000 Lit re water tank. Again God provided and the tank was purchased, the pump was purchased, the pipes were purchased and everything is working beautifully.
We were told that we had to install mains electricity and as we explained in our previous newsletter God miraculously made this possible and we are paying it off in monthly installments.
In the last year we have also had to establish a farm growing vegetables for the home and we had to get 50 laying hens to provide fresh eggs for the children. This has been done and we have employed a farm worker.
We had to have all the buildings and the old toilets repainted. Once again this has been done.
We had to purchase beds, mattresses, blankets, sheets and a single wardrobe for each child as this was a requirement of children services before we could be registered. Yet again God has provided.
We were told that we needed to have a full-time, live in, qualified social worker and a live in house mother. Two weeks ago we employed 2 ladies who are now on trial.

Last week the children and staff had a wonderful Christmas celebration.

Our Boys in their new clothes

Some of our Boys in their new clothes

Thank you to all those you who gave to make this possible and also to the members of Christian house Sitters who we normally approach only once a year with a request to give towards Home of Peace.

As a result of our appeal every child got new clothes.

The staff got new uniforms, and we were able to buy two footballs, two basketballs and also some toys for the youngest children.

In addition we were able to get them some balloons and nice food so they could have a good celebratory Christmas meal.

Showing off their new balls

Some of the younger children

 

As we move into 2016 we do need more sponsors to cover our monthly costs.

 

Prices have gone up steeply in Kenya and this has particularly affected our budget when purchasing food and medical care.

We also need to buy all of our children new school uniforms for their new academic year which begins early in January. A gift from one of our supporters which has gone a long way towards this but prices have gone up so steeply since last year and also now that we are a registered children’s home the children are required to have black leather lace up shoes for school. They used to wear sandals. As result the price of their uniforms for this coming year is double what we expected.

We will also need to pay school fees for our children as we do every January and this is going to cost us approximately £700 which we do not have.

This all does seem rather overwhelming as we are a very small charity and we do not have reserves of funds that we can draw from. Every penny we receive goes to Home of Peace. The trustees cover the cost of running the charity themselves.

The last couple of months we have been short of the amount needed each month to pay for food, wages, etc. and Ray and I had to cut down on our personal living expenses, just buying the essentials, so that we could take this money and give it to the children. We would not normally share this but we feel that the Lord wants us to share with you as our supporters and Christian friends.

If you would like to support the work please CLICK HERE and you’ll be taken to the page on our TLC Children’s Trust charity website where you will be able to make the necessary arrangements.

From that page there is also a link in the menu to be added to the mailing list

If you can’t give and you can’t promote the work amongst your friends or your church please will you at least pray. We believe God honours prayer. We know that He in control and we believe that He will once again provide what is needed as His children faithfully trust in Him.

Ray and I are exhausted. It’s been about four years since we had a real holiday but once again God has provided and we will be housesitting (through Christian House Sitters) in Southern Spain from the 4th of January until the 7th of February. This is a wonderful answer to prayer as house sitters we will get the use of this home, which looks beautiful from the photographs, rent-free and the owners have kindly made their car available for us to use whilst we are there. We are really looking forward to this. Thank you once again for your love, support and prayers.

God bless you,
Love in Jesus,
Marilyn.

 

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Thanksgiving Day

Today the USA celebrates Thanksgiving Day
Happy Thanksgiving

For those of us who do not live in the USA here is a very brief background to this special day

Thanksgiving Day can be traced back to the 1621 celebration at the Plymouth Plantation, where the religious refugees from England known popularly as the Pilgrims invited the local Native Americans to a harvest feast after a particularly successful growing season. The previous year’s harvests had failed and in the winter of 1620 half of the pilgrims had starved to death.Luckily for the rest, members of the local Wampanoag tribe taught the Pilgrims how to grow corn, beans and squash (the Three Sisters); catch fish, and collect seafood.

In the UK we do not have anything like this special day where we are reminded to stop and give thanks to God for His provision. I love the idea although I do realise it has been overtaken by many commercial interests.

As we all stop and give thanks to God for His provision may I ask you to prayerfully consider being a channel of provision to very vulnerable children.

We run a children’s home in rural Kenya. As Christmas approaches we would love to provide the children with some new clothes, underwear and sandals which they really need as a Christmas gift. We have 52 children at the home and 17 staff children and it will cost approximately £10  ($15) per child so if you are able to contribute towards this and you feel that this is something God would have you do that would be a great blessing. We would also like to give them all a special meal on Christmas Day.A Day to share

Even if you can’t support us on a regular basis would you  consider a one-off gift, no matter how small.

For further details about how you can give please click here

God bless you,
Ray

 

 

 

We are part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

Be blessed and be a blessing

I get a lot of emails and most are trying to sell me something so end up in the spam folder. But one I get almost every day is from a man I have never met. His name is Pastor Tim Burt and he sends out a daily email called Fresh Manna.

Today’s was a real blessing so I emailed him and he gave me permission to reproduce it in my blog.

I hope it blesses you as much as it did me.

Fresh Manna from Pastor Tim Burt
As Christians, we are given a life-long assignment which is described in 2 Corinthians 5:19 NLT that says, “And God has given us the task of reconciling people to Him. For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, no longer counting people’s sins against them. This is the wonderful message He has given us to tell others.”

2 Corinthians 5:19

God’s Word also teaches us that we should all use our God-given gifts and abilities—not only to help people to come to know Jesus, but to also serve others in His behalf. The Apostle Paul in speaking to people who have financial affluence wrote: “Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.” (1 Timothy 6:17-19)
 1 Peter 4:10
Paul teaches the affluent that when they are using their gift of financial affluence that God has given them to help promote the gospel and as a means to build the church, they are serving God and others and building a reward— “Laying up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”

 

This exhortation isn’t just to financially affluent people. This truth and exhortation is for all Christians at all times. When we use whatever God has given us in gifts, talents, and abilities to serve others from a pure heart and motivation of love, will be building our future—“a firm foundation in the coming age.” We do have another life to live in the world to come. It sincerely will be the life God intended for us to have. It will be without the curse of sin and defilement that sin has brought to this world. When we help others know Jesus and when we serve them, we lay up rewards for the next life. We also help them come to really know what life on earth here is about—the love of Jesus to redeem mankind—“…that they may take hold of the life that is truly life.”

 

One last thing to think about. Our personal character runs deep (good or bad) and is rarely changed until someone makes a life-style change in their thinking and actions. That is most often motivated by God, or the threat of something such as health issues or financial problems. When someone does make that change and stick with it, it changes their character over time. This is how God helps us experience true life transformation. He motivates us through His Word and asks us to make it a core value we live daily. When you take up the attitude of serving others as a life-style because the Lord tells us to, it will bless your life in more ways than you could have ever imagined—and produce eternal rewards!

 

Never give up serving God and reaching others with His love. It is “…taking hold of the life that truly is life.”

 

In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
http://todaysfreshmanna.wordpress.com/

 

May I suggest a couple of really simple ways in which you can bless others?
As you know we run 2 ministries.
TLC Children’s Trust provides for all the needs (accommodation, food, clothes, education, medical care, etc. ) for 52 very vulnerable children in rural Kenya. You can read more about it on our website CLICK HERE.
You could pray for us and for the work
You could tell your friends, family and church.
You could consider sponsoring a child.

 

Christian House Sitters is our other ministry and makes it possible for Christians all over the world to enjoy vacations that they could otherwise not afford. You can read more about it on our website CLICK HERE.
You could consider becoming a member and allowing us to bless you while you bless others.
For example:
When you next go away from home why not let us arrange for a Christian family to stay in your home looking after your home and your pets free of charge
You could also register as a Sitter and bless others by looking after their home and pets while at the same time enjoying a lovely rent-free vacation. We have houses all over the world.

 

God bless you,
Ray

Christian House Sitters is part of the registered charity

TLC Children’s Trust

UK Charity number 1156786

www.tlc-childrenstrust.org

WordPress are adding adverts to blogs. They are not always shown but if there are adverts on this page please note they were not placed by me, not approved by me and do not imply my recommendation

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