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Wise words from St Augustine about Travelling

This is not a deeply theological blog about Augustine. I will include a little about him because I am using one of his many famous quotes.

So who was he?

Augustine of Hippo was an early Christian theologian and philosopher whose writings influenced the development of Western Christianity and Western philosophy. He was the bishop of Hippo Regius in North Africa and is viewed as one of the most important Church Fathers in Western Christianity.

What Did Augustine Believe?

Three of Augustine’s most important ideas or arguments for the God of Christian theism are the following:

  1. Rest and peace for human beings is found only in God.  As creatures made in God’s image, humans can only find genuine rest and peace for their souls through salvation in Jesus Christ.
  2. According to Augustine, human beings are dependent upon God’s grace for salvation. Known as the “doctor of grace”, Augustine argued vigorously that Christianity was uniquely a religion of divine rescue instead of a works-based, self-help religion that was advocated by some of Augustine’s opponents.
  3. In response to the problem of evil, Augustine argued that while evil is real it is not a substance or a “thing.” Rather, evil is a privation, an absence of goodness in the human will. Therefore, God did not create evil; only good. Augustine further argued that the origin of evil resulted when Lucifer chose a lower good (himself) and exalted it above the ultimate good (God).

I am not going to discuss his theology in this blog.

I do strongly support his statement that:

The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page

I have been blessed by having travelled extensively and it is my intention to keep seeing new places for many years to come.

But travel always sounds so expensive and it can be costly however through the ministry of Christian House Sitters we can help you to greatly reduce the cost.

You can enjoy rent-free accommodation in lovely houses all around the world.

You can leave your own home in the safe and reliable hands of a person who will look after it and your pets if you have any, free of charge.

Have a look at our website and see if, with our help, you can ‘read a few more pages’

Why Join Christian House Sitters?

  1. Christian House Sitters is not a money making business but a ministry to support the work and people of God.
  2. Christian House Sitters started in order to provide rent-free vacations for Christians and reliable House Sitters for home owners who need someone they can trust to look after their home, pets and garden.
  3. House owners do not pay anything to have their property listed.
  4. House sitters are only charged £25 per year and in return for this many enjoy numerous rent-free vacations each year.
  5. 100% of the income is used to support vulnerable children at the Home of Peace Christian Children’s Home in rural Kenya

For Home Owners leaving your house empty carries many risks. Through a free registration with Christian House Sitters we can help you go away feeling safe and secure knowing that your home is being looked after and if necessary your pets are being cared for and loved in their own home.

So what next?

All you need to do is visit our website, read all about our ministry and register.

Naturally we are very happy to answer any questions but hopefully, you will find most already answered on our FAQ page.

We look forward to being a blessing to you and your loved ones.

For details 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

3 Good Reasons

I have allowed this blog to slip and I apologize for not posting anything for a while.
I could make a lot of excuses but the simple fact is even though life has been hectic I should post more often. Sorry.

Instead of just talking about Christian House Sitters I  thought that I would try and show you why we run this ministry. It has a 3-fold purpose.

1. It provides free accommodation to Christian’s who need a vacation.

2. It provides peace of mind to Christian’s who need someone to look after their home and pets (free of charge) while they are away. For example this morning I received the following email from one of our registered homeowners.

We recently had a great 3 weeks in the Deep South of USA – our much-needed break was made all the more enjoyable because of the peace of mind that two wonderful couples who were house sitting and caring or our two dogs. We even got regular email/text updates from them during our time away – so reassuring.

3. The funds provided by people paying £25 per year to register as House Sitters go to a Christian Children’s Home in Kenya. Yes, 100% of the funds. We do not hold back anything, the cost of running the site is covered personally by my wife and I. This is a ministry, not a business.

Here is something that we put on the Home of Peace Children’s Home Facebook page yesterday.

We recently faced a dilemma. We were visited by the Department of Children’s Services with a lovely young boy who needed urgent placement. I will not go into the details of why he needed the placement.
He arrived with just the clothes he was wearing. Nothing else!
Our dilemma. Do we accept him even though we don’t have any extra funds to look after him or do we send him away to live on the streets and probably die? To us the answer was obvious!
He is now living happily and safely at Home of Peace. Here is a picture of him feeling excited that he has a safe place to live, clothes, food and loving people to look after him.

Child with new clothes

Thank you for caring for me.

If you are thinking of a vacation and want someone to look after your home please visit our website and register as an owner. It is FREE.

Register as soon as you know your vacation dates, don’t leave it to the last-minute, as that way you will have a much better range of sitters to choose from.

If you want to be a sitter and to enjoy a rent-free vacation then we can also help.

Have a look at the website for the details. 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

2 Tips for a Better 2017

A new you for the new year

Phew 2016 was some year!

I am sure there have been many more difficult and stressful years but understandably 2016 is fresh in my memory.

Just a brief recap. It was the year of

  • UK Referendum on the EU
  • The American Presidential Campaign
  • The Rio Olympics
  • Multiple Terrorist attacks around the world
  • Hurricane Matthew killed 900 people
  • There are so many more but that will suffice.

Here is the GOOD NEWS.

2016 is finished. It is now 2017 and we enter a new year that holds to many unknowns. Exciting prospects, scary potentials and things that at the moment we can’t even really imagine.

Jump from 2016 to 2017
As you prepare for 2017 may I suggest that you consider doing 2 things that will help make your year better.

First surrender your life and your plans to God. I go forward in confidence because God knows what is in store and He remains in control no matter how bleak the circumstances may at times appear. He who gave His only son for you will never leave you.

You can trust Him. He really does love you and want what is best for you.

Second consider a vacation. A break from your normal daily grind. Time to get away, relax, renew relationships, rest, have fun and generally recharge your inner batteries.

We can help.

We offer rent-free vacations all over the world and, if necessary, we can also arrange for someone reliable to look after your home and pets free-of-charge while you are away

If you would like to benefit from our service please have a look at the website. CLICK HERE.

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

Frustration. Don’t wait do it now.

Posted on

Don't WaitFrustration

Every year, at this time,  Christian House Sitters goes through a period of real frustration.

July to Sept are very popular periods to get away and enjoy a vacation.

The ideal time to let us arrange for someone to come and look after your home and your pets FREE of charge while you are away.

So why the frustration?

Potential house sitters start looking for houses around the beginning of May.

People looking for someone to house sit for them often do not get around to listing their houses until the end of June or even later.

The result.

Sitters become frustrated and give up hope of finding the right place and home owners find that by the time they do list their home there are no longer any suitable sitters available.

Meanwhile I am sitting here tearing my little remaining hair out because I know from years of experience that there will be both houses needing sitters and sitters needing houses but I can’t satisfy either group because of their time difference.

Please help me help you and others.

If you are thinking of going away and would like a sitter let me know asap. Do not wait until the last-minute.
Remember it is a FREE service.

Just visit our website and register as a home owner. It is quick, free and easy. CLICK HERE 

Remember

  • It is far safer to have someone in your home while you are away.
  • Less chance of being broken into.
  • Less chance that something in the home will become faulty leaving you to return to a disaster
  • Your pets will be much happier
  • You will save money
  • You will be blessed and be blessing another Christian.

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

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

LUNDY. Something different

Something Different.

I received an email from one of our Registered Home Owners who frequently makes her lovely house available to our sitters. Her request was unusual.

Here is what she wrote:

Just to let you know that last summer I took 12 people for a 4-day retreat on Lundy Island, and this worked so well that I’ve stepped out in faith and booked the same house again for next September.  All I now need is people who’d like to join us there!  It occurred to me that anyone who goes might need a house sitter… so on that basis, I wonder if I could put a notice about the Lundy Experience on your blog? 

All best wishes and thanks for all you do

God bless

Ali

As most readers will know we help people all over the world to enjoy a rent-free vacation and we also help people who need someone to look after their home and animals while they are away. Again free of charge. But this sounded like a lovely idea so although we have never promoted anything like this before I agreed.

Here are the details she sent to me:

~~~~~~

A LUNDY JOURNEYL1
6th-10th September 2016
A special retreat on a unique island
You are invited to experience with us the natural beauty, rich wildlife, quiet and stillness of this remote granite outcrop in the Bristol Channel.

Our 4-night stay will be based in the splendid Millcombe House, built in 1836 for the island’s owner, and overlooking the coast and sea. It is managed by the
Landmark Trust.

We will allow the inspiring features of the island to help us explore an inner path of self-awareness  and personal growth, with opportunities for solitude  and silence, and also for community. Come prepared to walk, meditate, sing, cook and eat
together and enjoy the creativity of a shared retreat, whatever your personal spiritual path.

Lundy is a fairly rugged landscape so you will need to have a good standard of fitness to fully enjoy the retreat.

Cost: £375. (This does not include the cost of transport to and from the island.)
There are 12 places available at Millcombe House.
For further information and an application form, please call Ali on 07855 470069 or email alig9@btinternet.com.
L2
SUE GLANVILLE has many years of experience teaching religion, philosophy ad meditation. She has been a minister of an independent church. She is a qualified life coach and spiritual director and has led various courses and retreats, as well as seeing people individually. Sue loves wild and sacred spaces and has previously led trips to places such as Bardsey Island, Dartmoor and the Himalayas.

ALI GREEN is a priest, educator, author, traveller and spiritual director with many years’ experience in leading retreats, workshops and pilgrimages and in
individually accompanying people on their spiritual journey. A co-founder of a thriving ecological consultancy, she finds inspiration for creative expression in natural history, landscape and wildlife both close to home and across the world.

~~~~~~

So although this is not anything to do with Christian House Sitters I am bringing it to your attention. If you want any further details please contact Ali Green as I do not know anything more.

If you are going on this trip or indeed any vacation and we can help you find someone to look after your home and pets while you are away remember it is free. 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

Why did you do it??

Why did the chicken cross the road
Motives Matter .

As I was thinking and praying about what to put in my blog post this week I felt strongly that I needed to talk about our motives.

I resisted after all this blog is supposed to be about our ministry called Christian House Sitters where we help people all over the world to enjoy vacations that they could not otherwise afford.

But the more I resisted the stronger the urge to tackle the topic. So I am hopefully being obedient in writing this post and I trust it will be a blessing to you.

Some time ago I wrote a book called Balancing Your Life Effectively which looks at how God wants to be in control of all the different areas of our lives. The Physical, the Emotional, the Social and the Spiritual. My aim was to make it really practical and simple to follow. No heavy theology.

One of the chapters deals with the question of our motives so I am going to quote an extract.

You go to church every Sunday, in fact you not only attend the Sunday services you also go along to the mid-week prayer meeting and the bible study group. Good!

But may I be so bold as to ask you to examine your motives. Why do you attend all those services? Is your attendance due to a sincere desire to have fellowship with the family of God and a heartfelt yearning to know God better, or could it be that you go for purely social reasons? You have no other friends and if you miss a meeting you feel lonely. Could it be that last time you missed a service the pastor phoned or called to find out what was wrong and as a result you are too embarrassed to ever miss again? What are your real motives?

What about your bible study? You may have a strictly disciplined programme of personal bible study. Good!

But once again what are your motives? Is it because you believe the bible to be the inspired word of Almighty God and as a result you are studying to learn how He wants you to live. Is it that you want to learn more about Him in order to please him? Or could it be that you are motivated by something else? I know many people who study the bible in order to show off. In order to be able to boast of their bible knowledge. In order to be able to quote verses and thereby demonstrate their ‘super spirituality.’ What are your motives?

Do you witness to your faith in Christ? I sincerely hope that you do.
We are clearly and specifically commanded to go and tell what the
Lord has done. But why do you witness? Is it out of obedience to the Lord? Out of a heart filled with gratitude to God for His blessings to you? Are you motivated by a realisation that without Jesus there is no hope for a lost mankind? Or are you possibly motivated by pride?
You want people to know that YOU are a ‘soul winner.’ Could your motivation be a desire to ‘notch up another spiritual scalp?’

In 1st Samuel chapter 16 verse 7 we are told that The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart. Jeremiah chapter 17 verse 10 puts the same thought this way I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind.

Obviously God is interested in what you do but infinitely more important to Him is the motivation behind your actions.God sees your motives

Pause for a while. Examine your life. Think about the ‘good’ things in which you are involved. Ask yourself honestly why you are involved.
Examine your true motives and as the Lord reveals impure motives confess them to Him and ask Him to give you those motives which will enable Him to say Well done good and faithful servant.
Book Cover
If you are interested the book is available to download or to purchase a copy from any branch of Amazon. NOTE All profits will go to support the Children’s Home in Kenya through our charity TLC Children’s Trust. “Balancing Your Life Effectively” The ISBN number is 978-1503209718

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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