Thursday, February 20, 2014


NO! It is powerful word. Yes, is equally as powerful. Both hold an answer, it may be positive, or it may be negative. "NO, you can't play in the street", is positive although the word "no" itself is a negative. "YES, you look horrible in that dress", a negative affirmed with a positive. 

There are over 14,000 children in the state of Arizona who are desperately looking for homes. There are 153 million orphans world wide. The bible mandates we care for orphans and widows.

Church statistic : 20% of the people do 80% of the work. You who serve every Sunday know this well. We know that few show up to do the work. Orphan care is not much different. If only 7% the church (the people) stepped up to follow the biblical mandate to care for orphans there would be NO orphans world wide.

Today I said NO. I think I have recanted that statement a thousand times in the past 5 hours. NO...I will not take a 6 year old who is need of a home. NO. My heart broke as I heard the story of this little broken, abused, girl in need of someone to say YES to her. YES, I will love you. YES, I will treat you like you make a difference. YES I will follow this mandate. YES. NO, I won't let one more child sit in a crisis center, YES I will do it! But I said NO....NO.

I know you dear friends. You are probably thinking, 'Drea, you always say YES. There has to come a time where you say NO. It is okay. You can't save the world." You are right. I, we can't always say YES. I couldn't say YES. My house is full. I had to say NO.

Here is the real question....Can you say YES?

Somewhere tonight there is a 6 year old girl, scared, frightened, alone. Her family said NO, she isn't worth it. Foster family said NO, we just can't handle it. This mama said NO, I have so many. Who will say YES? YES, I will deny myself. YES, I will care for these fatherless. NO, I will not put it off for one more minute. YES...YES...YES, she is worth it. YES, they are worth it. YES, I was worth it!

Only 7% of the church. NO more orphans. Will you say YES?

contact me if you would like to pursue saying YES to one of the least of these

Saturday, June 15, 2013


Tomorrow is Fathers Day. Some of us may give deep thought about this special day, some may see it as just another day to celebrate and another gift to buy. However for me, this year, I have been challenged into deeper thought of this special day and what it means to me to celebrate Father's Day. 

For years it was just my mom and I. Because my dad was not around frequently, my mom filled the role of mother and father. At some point I made her Father's Day cards, because I had no one else to give them too and she was both to me. I resolved that to be okay. It wasn't. My daddy was important to me and no matter how hard she tried, she couldn't fill that role. 

Roger came into my life, when I was eleven.  my bio dad started to come more frequently also. They both did their very best to love me and raise me. In many ways I am the woman I am today because of my dads. I love them dearly and wouldn't change a thing or trade them for the world. I miss my daddy Richard, beyond words. He was a kind, tender hearted man. He loved hunting, fishing and the great out doors. He loved me. He always told me so. He called me Monkey, that was my special name. Roger taught me so much and still does. He taught me how to be witty, laugh and to care for the people around me. He is my dad just like Richard was and is invaluable in my life. 

Today I want to share about 2 other men in my life that taught me about true Fatherly love. (Scroll down)

Roger my loving father who raised me from 11years old and on. 

Richard, my loving dad who gave me life, with Jesus now. 

Bryan, the love of my life who showed how a daddy should love. 

When children are young, if they have parents that they care for and respect, they want to be just like their daddy's. I remember my dad and how I tried to be brave and strong like him. I tried to mimic him and what he did. I was my dads shadow as a young child. He was a promise of safety, a rock. 

Some times things go wrong and we do not have the healthy foundations of what a father could bring to a child's life. We are left broken and scared. 

Our Heavenly Father wants to show us what perfect love from a Father looks like. How he can love unconditionally and without blemish. He wants to teach us, guide us and make us more and more like him. He wants to teach boys how to be great, remarkable daddy's like He is. 

In the same way we mimic our earthly father's sometimes good and even sometimes bad. Our Heavenly Father wants us and dads to mimic Him. Always good, alway loving, always teaching, always guiding, always honoring. He wants daddy's to make a difference in their children's lives. Our Heavenly Father is even a "Father to the Fartherless." 

This brings me to the other man in my life who has demonstrated such love to me. My husband, Bryan. Of course he is not perfect as Jesus is, but he strives to be. He has had great representation in his earthly father, and loves His Heavenly Father. Therefore he wants to mimic exactly what he has learned. 

Today I honor the Father's in my life. I honor my Heavenly Father, my two earthly fathers, and I honor my husband who has shown me in the physical sense what a father should really look like. 

 Bryan Thiele, I can say from the bottom of my heart you have taught me more than any other human, what a Godly, loving father should look like. You have taken the initiative to 
follow your Heavenly Father and to be holy as He is holy. What is more, you have followed in His footsteps and are a father to the fatherless. There is no man on earth I have more respect for, more love or more gratitude for, than you. I pray our boys and girls follow closely in their fathers and Fathers footsteps. I love you.

For all the Fathers in my life, I am truly grateful. 

Happy Father's Day! 

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Martina's Joy...

This is a story of Joy! A story of Gods love for one lady and her family. This story of joy, has come with its share of tragedy, and sorrow. This story is the epitome of Psalm 30:5 ...Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.
If this story compels you and you want to be a part of Martina's joy, please visit Remember The Poor  where you can make a donation to this wonderful cause. 
(please scroll down to bottom of page and pause the playlist before watching the video) 

Friday, January 11, 2013

Transformation in Kochgoma- Part 2 of 2

Lawrence Ogwal, age 12, loves animals and wants to be a veterinary doctor. His parents are too poor to pay for schooling.

Peter Ogwang is age 14. He stopped in 5th grade, unable to afford to continue. He is currently digging to support some of his 8 siblings.

You may have heard Experito mention in the video yesterday the long-range vision for Kochgoma: a complete school kindergarten through high school. We have been praying about and for this school for several years. The nursery school/kindergarten built a couple of years ago is the beginning of this project.

* Nearly 1000 children in Kochgoma are not attending school…because there is not one within a reasonable distance to attend. Most are hungry or sick. And all are affected by the 20+ year war.

* The dream we share with Experito is that all 1000 children could not only attend school and be educated about health care and learn how to provide for themselves, but also be trained in Worldwide Perspectives/Pathways during their high school years.

* We pray, trust and hope that this school would become a launching pad for sending well-trained students to take the gospel into the un-reached areas of northern Africa (which is in the 10/40 window).

Lawrence and Peter are two of the 1000 children living in Kochgoma who are currently not attending school.

The estimated cost of building the school (including planting food, providing school uniforms and shoes for everyone, building latrines and showers, and providing dormitories to students who are too far to safely walk) is $1,100,000 or about $1100 per student.

One-time “Sponsorship”

You can sponsor 1 child… or 2 or 5 or 10…or more By sponsoring a child, you will be contributing to the cost of building the school and providing the children with uniforms and shoes and other schooling needs. The sponsorship amount of $1100 per child can be given all at once or over the period of a year.

RADICAL Challenge

The Church at Brook Hills, where David Platt pastors, took one year to join forces and take the RADICAL challenge. The challenge is–for a period of one year– to make a plan to forego our comforts to meet the needs of the world around us. The goal is to spend as little as possible and give as much as possible.

Remember the Poor is planning to provide funding for Martina’s home ($30,000), and funding for the school for 1000 children in Kochgoma ($1,100,000). All 15 of Martina’s children are included in the 1000 who need sponsorship. 100% of your donations will go directly toward these projects.

If you, your family, your small group or your church will be joining Remember the Poor for a RADICAL challenge during 2013, would, you let us know by leaving a comment or sending an email? We’d love it if you would share your ideas on what you plan to do to to cut back on comforts to make more available to give. We’ll compile ideas and share them in a later blog post.

As I was writing this, I was reminded of Paul’s encouragement to the church at Philippi. They had been giving to meet Paul’s needs, to “share in his troubles.” He reminded them:“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” As we give, we can do so with confidence that God will meet our every need.

To our God and Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Philippians 4:20

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Transformation in Kochgoma- Part 1 of 2...

Bryan and I count this man, Pastor Experito, and his family, among our dearest of friends. Immense thanks to Pastor Jonathan Celoria of Palm Vista Church for putting this video together. The children you see in this video are sitting outside the kindergarten school in Kochgoma, the structure funded by RTP donors. 

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Martina's Joy...

Bryan and I, and a group of three others visited Pastor Experito in Gulu in October.  We asked to meet some of the families who live in Kochgoma, whose children can attend the school, as the school grows.
Oct 6 (Drea Thiele):
Today was a long day full of joy, sorrow, sad stories, some victorious, some with no hope. Kochgoma is about 2 hours in the bush outside of Gulu (Northern Uganda). The people here have been so affected by the LRA (Lord’s Resistance Army) and most have nothing. No food, one pair of clothes, no soap, no work, no land and no home. The children are mistreated or unwanted due to a parent’s inability to provide for them. Some have no parents at all.
Today I met with Martina, a widow, whose husband died years ago. She had threechildren, 2 boys and a girl. Her daughter died last month of HIV/AIDS. She now cares for 15 children, as her daughter-in-laws and their children also live with her, and her two sons leave often. She has been seriously affected by the war and the LRA rebels. She is having a hard time because she is old and can’t work and farm like others can. Her small garden is dried up, and her hut leaks. She has very little food and only the clothes on her back. Her daughter’s grave is just a few feet from her mud hut, with a simple home-made wooden cross.
Martina’s hope is Jesus. She became a born again believer when she was young. She lost most of her relatives in the LRA rebel war, and grew up virtually alone. Herheart was so troubled, but the Lord spoke to her and said, “Don’t be troubled, you will make it through.” Her miracle is “JOY” she says.  Even looking at the cross where her daughter is buried, she still has joy.
Her grandchildren cannot attend school because they have no money for school fees, but Martina still has joy!
Her granddaughter, Prisca, spent the majority of her day with me. She was leaning on me, playing with my fingers and cuddling with me. I learned later that it was her mom who had just died.  I was so blessed to be able to give her love and attention as she has to be mourning the loss of her mom.
Today the Lord has filled us with unspeakable joy! Joy to do His work. Watching these glorious servants of God, fills us also with hope! Hope to keep going, hope to know that this life is for one purpose only, hope to be the hands and feet of Jesus, the whole earth filled with his glory!
Upon our return to the U.S., we have had ongoing communication with Experito about how we can best help him and Justine and their church serve this widow and her grandchildren.
Experito Nov 1:  Helping Martina would be one of the most burden lifting moments for her and quite yoke breaking. She has been one of the families we help weekly with foodstuffs because of her limited ability to cultivate sufficient food supplies for such a huge extended family!  Martina spoke to Drea about her leaking grass thatched house. Apparently it wears her down to keep looking for the scarce grass to thatch her roof seasonally.
For several years we have been talking with Experito about a Habitat for Humanity type project in Kochgoma.  (The community and residents provides the labor, and others, like us, provide the money for materials). It is his desire, and therefore ours as well, to see the community freed from the chains of slavery to finding and hauling clean water.  The best way to do that is through housing that has iron sheet roofing.  Water is channeled from the iron sheet roof, down the rain gutters, into the water tank. They use this for their water source, rather than walking miles to pump it, and walking miles to haul a few gallons back to their hut.
We therefore asked him if a house would be appropriate for Martina and her 15 children.
Experito Nov 2: We thank God that he has brought you in our way to partner that we can together do whatever we could for the economically vulnerable. My wife has always been praying for them to have a better living condition. I must confess that you are stepping in as an answer to Justine’s daily heart cry.
Please Drea you have made us to genuinely appreciate the unfathomable love of God by feeling what we have been feeling for the least in society. It encourages us more to know that we are not alone but an army of God to bring the goodness of God to whom it had been denied. It sometimes emotionally drains us to see that we are helpless. However, praise be to God who cares. A house shall  take Martina leaps and bounds with her extended family.
Experito Nov 8: I was able to visit Martina and her grandkids.  They are supposed to be 15 in her care but the two had been taken to hospital because they were sick. They were not available for our camera and conversation. It was only 13 available as you can see in the picture.
About the house, I shared the opportunity to some members of the community and they have showed interest to come and provide manual labour when time comes for construction.  Martina is currying this burden of these kids because five of them have no father and mother. Three of them the mother is dead but their father became mentally derailed and his father is as well very ill. The other kids have mothers and the fathers whose whereabouts are unknown. Justine and I are praying that Martina will receive good-hearted people to help uplift her state of living conditions as well as the little kids get educated.
And when we asked what amenities the house should have, Experito wrote:
Experito Nov 12: We will be extremely delighted to see Martina’s family advance to a good standard of living. The house is intended to have 4 bedrooms. There will be a pit latrine bathroom outside. The house shall be built with bricks, doors, windows, and iron sheets (for roofing). It shall be plastered and painted, with a water harvest tank constructed as well. With the size of Martina’s family, a house of $30,000, which shall include a water harvest tank, might be appropriate.
100% of any donations go directly to Africa.  If you would like to donate toward Martina’s home, please send a note with your donation to Remember The Poor.  100% of your gift will go toward her home.  We’ll be taking pictures and hopefully video to provide updates on progress.
“So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith.” Galatians 6:10

Martina with her daughter - in- law, you can see the fresh grave in the background

Martina and I saying goodbye, until we meet again!

Justine (Experito's wife) Prisca (who's mother just died) and Martina
Martina and the 13 of the 15 children in her care

Blog shared by: Drea Thiele, Cindy May and Pastor Experito

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Orphan Sunday...

Today, November 4, is Orphan Sunday. I find "Orphan Sunday" hard to say, because in God's economy every day is Orphan Day! James 1:27, "Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this; to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world."

I understand that Orphan Sunday is a day of recognition, and not the only day we celebrate, or remember, but is it? There are 147 million orphans in the world. 10,000 just in my home state, Arizona. Are we remembering? Are we celebrating with all the children that are forever home? My hearts cry is that every day we remember, every day we celebrate! Every day we should advocate, every day we should ask God, "How do you want to use me?" 

All over Gods word He tells us how we should care for orphans and widows. These words are not mere suggestions, they are commands. This command has no contingencies, based on finances, space in your home, economic times,  politics, tax deductions, age, gender, location, time, or .......

This command is direct, unchanging, inexcusable, there are no conditions to it. We are to care for orphans in their distress. The only consideration there is, is choosing if we will obey or disobey. 

Five years ago, God interrupted our lives with two beautiful girls, one from Russia and one from China. And then just two years later, 3 more from Ethiopia, 1 girl and 2 boys. We didn't know all He had in store for us and I am thankful that he changed the path we were on, to His path. It has been quite a journey. I have not for one second regretted our YES decision. We have planned, stepped out in blind faith, rejoiced, cried, celebrated, labored, but most importantly we have LOVED and been LOVED. 

"I will not leave you as orphans, I will come to you." John 14:18

My heart aches for the other 149 million children who don't know the love of a mother and father, who are alone, fending for themselves. The children who need touch, unconditional love, food, shelter, Jesus. It aches for the suffering, the uncomforted, the tears left unwiped, cries unheard, prayers unsaid.

147 million, minus 5 more, Cailee, Cyilea, Meske, Eyob, Sami...

What will you do with the words of God:

"Whoever receives on such child in my name receives me..." ~ Matthew 18:5

"But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his son, born of woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, "Abba! Father!" So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God." ~ Galatians 4:4-6

"Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in His holy habitation. God settles the lonely in families, He leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious dwell in a parched land." ~ Psalm 68: 5-6

My babies, representing 4 Nations

Forever Family

Bubby and Cyilea

The Thiele Clan

Project Playlist