Does Christmastime leave you feeling frazzled? This season, you can unwind with Steve Estes’ A Better December. In this little gem of a book, you will find refreshing, yet poignant stories that will boost your spirits during the year’s busiest season. Estes’ cleverly combines the wisdom of Proverbs with present-day true stories and punctuates them with whimsical pen-and-ink illustrations. Each chapter is truly a Christmas treat! Order your copy today!
In developing countries, people with disabilities are often treated as outcasts; this is especially true for children with special needs. Kids are often excluded from schools, mocked and bullied by other children, and neglected by their own families. But Luke 14 says, “When you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed." And yes, that includes children with disabilities. So how do we obey to the Word of God in Luke 14? Well, Jenny Jay, a Ministry and Missions intern, does it by serving with our Cause 4 Life ministry outreach in Haiti. There, Jenny worked with other interns on teaching typical children how to love and befriend kids with disabilities. Together, they played games, sang songs, and learned about Jesus’ love for all children. Curious to learn more about how Cause 4 Life is carrying out the Luke 14 mandate? Just watch this short video with a message from Jenny.
At Joni and Friends, we are committed to disability ministry – not just for today, but also for the future! That’s why our Christian Institute on Disability wants to say thank you. It is through your support that we are able to offer internships, training, and curriculum to the next generation of disability leaders. Because of your partnership, these top-notch students receive Biblical education and hands-on experience, pairing solid preparation with a passion for disability ministry. “Through what you’ve taught us, the Lord has equipped us to share God’s heart for disability,” says intern Kathleen Kimbrough. “Equipped and empowered are the two best words to describe my internship at Joni and Friends. I’m ready to implement what I’ve learned for the rest of my life!” Thank you for your...
Your love is changing lives around the world! Please take a minute to read this letter for you from a grateful family in Romania… Dear friends, Five years ago, our little girl Ionescu received a wheelchair from you. It was the first time in her life that she could move by herself. The wheelchair you gave her taught her how to live – to play, to go to school, to have friends and be a normal little girl. We were given two special books with Ionescu’s wheelchair – a Bible and a book about a lady named Joni. Through these...
Worldwide, there are hundreds of thousands of children without a permanent home—children who live in orphanages, foster homes, or who have been abandoned and left on the streets. You may have thought about reaching out to these children through adoption, but not known where to start. What is it like to adopt? What are the challenges and the blessings that come with adopting a child in need of a family? If you’ve considered adoption before or if you know someone who is in the process of adoption, we want to encourage you to watch this short video about a very, special family.
Psalm 68 says, God is “Father to the fatherless … God places the lonely in families” and this video gives testimony to God’s Word. So if you’re curious to learn more, this week Joni will be sharing through the radio three amazing stories of families who have been blessed through adoption. Tune-in or listen on our radio page and then, share with your friends the power of adoption!
You are putting the Gospel into action! Gloria recently brought her daughter Gabriella to our Wheels for the World outreach in El Salvador. “I have prayed so much for so long,” Gloria told us. “You are His people and you are showing us through this wheelchair that God’s love has no limits!” Today you can meet Gloria and Gabriella face-to-face – through this video, step right into the wheelchair distribution site, as Gloria expresses her thanks for your gift.
Bryson fell in love with disability ministry back in high school, where he volunteered to be a buddy to a special needs student. Now a college student majoring in Special Education, Wheels for the World fuels the vision of his life. “Disability is such a tangible problem and Wheels for the World gives us a tangible way to help. When I’m working on a wheelchair I look over and see a child or an elderly lady. When I’m done, they get to roll away and have a completely different life. It’s incredible that everything we do is...
As 2013 winds down, it’s time to start planning for 2014. Stay organized in the new year with Joni’s 2014 Planner featuring her never-before-seen watercolor of the Everglades! With courage as the theme, you’ll find God’s strength each day through scriptures, quotes, and monthly devotions. And with month-at-a-glance pages, weekly and daily planning, as well as space for journaling, prayer lists, and appointments, you’ll have plenty of help staying organized. Available exclusively from Joni and Friends, Joni’s 2014 Planner makes an excellent Christmas gift for friends! Order yours – and one for a friend – today!
Friendships formed at Family Retreat often last a lifetime. Meet Jacob, one of our stellar short-term missionaries (STMs), and his buddy Miller. Miller is passionate about music, his love for the Lord, and Jacob's friendship. He has Down syndrome and has been Jacob's buddy at Family Retreat since 2008. This year, when Jacob walked down the aisle to marry his fiancé Hannah, he invited Miller to be one of his groomsmen. Jacob wanted to show Miller that he is more than just a buddy at Family Retreat, he's part of the family. Jacob said, “Miller is like family to me. He really is. I had all of the men in my family in the wedding.” Miller was proud and overjoyed to be a part of his friend’s special day! And most remarkably, three weeks following his wedding (at the insistence of his bride Hannah), Jacob returned to serve as an STM for two weeks at Family Retreat -- he wanted to be there for Miller and his other buddies! Like so many of our wonderful STMs, Jacob values the dear friendships that he’s formed serving at Family Retreat!
Volunteer to serve! That’s what these three sisters have chosen to do. Every week at Joni and Friends, they’re leading tours, sending cards to kids, preparing mailings – whatever is needed. Their help makes ministry happen! ‘When you serve other people, you feel so joyful because you’re helping and not just thinking about yourself,” explains Isabella. “JOY stands for Jesus, Others, and then You!” Olivia loves the words of scripture on the walls of the building. “My favorite says, ‘When you give a banquet, invite the poor and crippled and you will be blessed.’ Joni and Friends is helping people that others forget.” Says Ahna, “The Bible tells us that we are not to be served, but to serve. I’ve learned to be a friend to people with disabilities and to relate to people who are different than me.” With sweetness and passion, these three are setting a new standard for their generation.