Imagine raising your children in a home you patch together with whatever supplies you can find—crushed cans, scraps of wood, zinc sheets or plastic.
When it rains, the dirt floors quickly morph into knee-high muddy water. And the blazing sun beats down on your black-tarp roof, creating an oven in which you sleep.
This is the place your family takes shelter, but it’s really not secure at all. Someone could easily walk in and steal whatever little belongings you have, and then what? It must all feel so hopeless.
This was the poverty we saw in one village in Nicaragua; a scene that the mothers described again and again as we visited their homes.
As one of the poorest countries in Central America, one-third of all households in Nicaragua are single-mother families, and many of them are struggling to afford basic needs like shelter.
A Wonderful Gift
Yet recently, we were there to witness something astonishingly beautiful happen for a number of these families.
You, the friends and partners of Joyce Meyer Ministries, came to the rescue by providing 22 families with brand new homes and enough land to grow fruit trees and a garden.
Thanks to your support, and with the help of several partnering organizations, each family now has a latrine, access to electricity, sturdy walls and a roof, windows, locking doors, a breezy porch and solid floors.
There is also a genuine sense of ownership, as the families helped to build the homes under the direction of a skilled foreman.
And they didn’t know which house would become theirs, so they built each one as if it was their own while getting to know their neighbors in the process.
Lifting A Burden
Verónica Flores is a widow who has for years had health issues that have prevented her from working outside the home. Her daughter Clara Mercedes left school so she could support her mom and sisters as well as her siblings’ children.
Eight months pregnant with her first baby, Clara works at a restaurant nearly seven days a week to earn a wage that barely covers their expenses. Owning a home will help ease a huge burden for their family.
“I feel very thankful because we’ve been renting houses and we have been living very bad because of that,” Verónica said, pointing out leaks in the house they’ve been renting.
Clara said she was holding back tears of joy when she picked up the keys to their new house at the dedication ceremony.
To her, the home means she’ll have the chance to give her daughter a better life, perhaps the chance to go to school.
The house—selected for them through a drawing—was a stone’s throw from the place they were renting. Verónica said it’s the very home she asked God for in her prayers.
“Every night I’ve been praying for God to provide me with a house, and God blessed me and gave me the house that I wanted,” Verónica said, smiling.
Miriam Santana and her daughter, Jesenia, haven’t had a permanent home in many years. Instead they’ve moved frequently from place to place in search of shelter.
The home they have been renting was merely a frame, and Miriam saved up the money for tarps so she could enclose the space.
Her biggest concern has been that people will come in and steal their belongings.
“It’s just plastic,” Miriam said. “Somebody can just cut it and get things we have … and take them away.”
Her new home will bring stability and security to their situation, and that is a magnificent answer to her prayers.
“I want to say, ‘Thank you, oh Lord, that I was able to receive what I have been praying for,’” she said.
These families and so many others are seeing God’s fervent love for them through each need that’s met, and that is nothing short of amazing.
From the bottom of our hearts, we are so grateful for your help in sharing Christ in such a practical and life-altering way.
You are helping change lives for good and encouraging families in their walk with God.