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Maria – June 2019

Faithful in the small things!!!

…I love the bible verse that says “be faithful in the small things and I will give you the big ones!!!” But is it really like that?! Does God really keep His promises? Oooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhh YES HE DOES!

When I started working with Smiles at the end of 2002, I started in a very small organization. Just 4 PEOPLE were helping Kevin to establish the work!

We did everything together. Whatever was needed. At that time, I remember my father was reading me this bible verse quite often. In the school, because I was in my third year of university, this verse was mentioned many times too. So everywhere I turned my head – I heard it! So it became my motto and at that time and in everything I did – I had this in my mind!

I remember I was a very shy person, and one day one of my teachers asked me to help them with the inventory at the Campus Canteen. I had to introduce dates in the computer and that was all…..But soon I learned other things that today made me the person I am.

Similarly, when I started working in Smiles, I was very quiet and shy– trust me I was :)- and most of the time acted like a mouse…..I had my notebook and followed Mr Hoy everywhere taking notes, translating and helping him understand complex Romanian situations.

Time went by and slowly I did different things that became bigger and bigger and bigger each time!!! Some were soooo big that I got scared!

So those words, even today, are in my mind and in my life all the time…”be faithful in small things and I give you the big things“…AND GOD SURE DID GIVE ME some BIG THINGS!!!!

I won’t start to tell you everything that I received over the years….I could write a novel… But I tell you only the last month. Or, let’s start with the last 24 hours!

As many of you know, one of my favourite projects is Tileagd Education programme. Well. To function in Romania (legally) you have to follow numerous steps in order to be accredited! As a School, we started in 2003 and the Nursery in 2004. Four years later my colleague Delia and lady Clara together with the staff at that time, started the process of accreditation. So after a loooooooot of work and few days of inspections, we received it. Praise God!

The condition was that every 5 years it needed to be renewed.
Well, the school joined in partnership with the state department 5 years ago, so this procedure was put on hold as it was done by the State for the School. But on the Nursery side we had to do it. Because we were not ready, and because of the financial pressure year by year we postponed it. BUT this year in January after a discussion with my colleague Moni, who is the Director of the nursery, we said “let’s do it”. And we started.

I told you in my last update that we had to borrow the money to pay the fees in order to ask them to come for inspection (this is Romanian law). So, by March, we registered our request and last week they told us “WE COME”.

We panicked. Had all sorts of imaginations and worries about bad things.
But the morning, when the two inspectors entered in the nursery, the peace that I felt was beyond my explanation and understanding. Once again, the verse came in my mind “faithful in the small things and I give you the big things”. So I said, God can give us big as we are faithful to Him in the small!! AND HE DID!!!!

After a looooooooooooooong day, we passed the Inspection with a high mark. I’m SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO HAPPY and thankful to my God! He is amazing!!

I’m also very proud and happy with the director of the nursery Monica. She had a hard job as she had to put everything in place!! And she did an amazing job. I’m very proud of the teachers and all the Smiles staff for all the effort they contributed. May GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!!

So, what was happening in the other projects during this past month?

Well, Dezna was on my list quite a lot! Time fly’s and we have to really focus on getting the Camp ready. The facility starts to look really nice and ready for the kids to come and enjoy the time there. Now we are at the stage where we focus a lot on exterior work and very detailed jobs!

Also employing staff is on the “to do list” so pleaseeeeeeeeeee pray that we will find the right people!!! I’m really happy that this summer Ioana, our social assistant from our Gepiu project will be the main leader present on site for the Dezna Camps! She is a multi-functional lady and I am amazed and thankful for her heart for the kids…wherever they are!!

Gepiu after-school project is getting close to this academic year end. The kids are looking forward to the summer holiday! Next month they have a “Gepiu Fair” so please pray for good weather!!! The weather in Romania is very changeable this year and it seems that the UK rain moved here more and more 🙂 !!

The Tileagd project, similarly, getting close to the summer holiday! My plan is that during the summer the “best kids” that were good in school and went day by day to give them a Dezna Camp reward. I still have to raise support for that so if you would like to help send one kid in a camp, feel free to follow this link.
https://www.thesmilesfoundation.org/project/childrens-outreach/

SMALL THINGS often make the big ones happen!! This is what we are doing through all our projects day by day. Yes some of them over the years had to change , some ceased operating as circumstances changed, some had to move on under a “new revised plan” but in EVERYTHING we pray that we can stay faithful in the small things because then GOD WILL GIVE US THE BIG THINGS! HE NEVER LET’S DOWN!! Even if He responds later than we would sometimes wish – He always responds. That is His promise!

So my friend, stay close to Him, be faithful in what He has called you to do and He will give you more to do. And be assured, your reward will be amazing in heaven!

With love
Maria
Director of Operations
The Smiles Foundation – Romania

E-mail: Maria Hava maria.cimpoca@thesmilesfoundation.org

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