Introducing you to the Castelijns:
Hello! We are Albert and Lynne Castelijn from Australia.
For the last 18 years we have been working in church planting, community development and Bible translation amongst the beautiful Banwaon people of the Philippines.
Bible translation remains the highest priority for the Banwaon people. There is a strong, thriving church – but only 40% of the New Testament is fully completed.
The Bucket Shower Story
by Lynne Castelijn
It’s the little things…. “For who hath despised the day of small things?” Zechariah 4:10
“Many years ago when our children were still small and Stevie wasn’t even a twinkle in his mother’s eye, life in the jungle for our family was fairly basic. For example, our shower was a bucket which was filled with water heated from the kettle. Somehow we managed to shower all five of us with just one bucketful (not all at the same time, mind you!)
Our days were filled with the exhaustion and exhilaration of language learning, medical work and constant people.
So, oh, how I would look forward to our breaks in town at the mission guest home every three months when I could stand under a full strength steaming shower relaxing for more than one minute at a time!
On the mornings we were due to fly back into the village, I would wake up as early as necessary – sometimes even 4.30am – just to savor that final luxurious shower and wash my hair before returning to the bucket-bird-baths for the next three months.
Times have changed and technology has advanced. Now we have a small gas hot-water system in our home in the village.
I can’t say I miss the bucket-baths, but to this day I never take hot running water for granted – often thanking the Lord for a decent shower. I really don’t know why we had to bathe our kids at all when they were small?! **********************
Reminiscing on the old bucket-baths reminded me how often it’s the little things that can help us turn the corner when we’re feeling low.
An encouraging smile.
A hot cup of tea.
A friendly email or note in the post.
While a kind word or the perfect brew isn’t going to solve the major issues of life or ministry, we’ve repeatedly seen how it can be a turning point – a way of saying “I care about you” – and thus give us energy and fortitude to be refreshed, to take a deep breath and persevere in the task God has called us to.
Hospitality, care and encouragement are close to my heart.
I’ve benefitted when others cared for me when I was struggling. Conversely, I’ve sunk even lower when it was absent. I yearn to encourage others on in the life God has for them.
Which is why I’ve had the idea for some time to bless our mission Guest Home on the island of Mindanao, Philippines with some of those “little things” which can be a subconscious boost.
The project on my heart is to buy several sets of new good-quality sheet and quilt sets to send back to the Philippines to be used in our Guest Home. Taking advantage of great online deals or through stores like Harris Scarfe which offer excellent quality at reduced prices, I’d like to bless our Mindanao missionaries like Grant and Marianne with this “little thing” to encourage them.
THANK YOU for your continued partnership with us in a myriad of aspects, as we see the Gospel go to the ends of the earth, believers discipled and churches raised up for the glory of God! **********************
“If I can put one touch of rosy sunset into the life of any man or woman, I shall feel that I have worked with God.” G.K. Chesterton
As a Side Note to our Readers: There is No Need to Contribute as all of Lynne’s friends in Australia gave generously! All has been provided! Bedding is on its way from Australia. We just wanted to share this encouraging letter with you!
And we want to send our deepest gratitude to Lynne and all the Australian contributors to her linen project! Thank you for blessing us and the NTM Guest Home with the big things of new bedding and towels. And the big thing of writing such a wonderful letter about Hospitality and the little things that we do every day!! You encouraged our hearts as we just had to buy two new electric hot water shower heaters for the Guest Home when your letter came!
Your family will be the first family to use the new shower heater in Room 4 when you come next week!
Darryl & Becky Jordan
NTM Mindanao Guest House Managers