A Broken Bank Card, ATM, and Lots of Faith

Waving hands, kids talking simultaneously, excitement, smiles, and some happy tears. The atmosphere in the room was electric and continued to intensify as almost all of the kids expressed a desire to share a miracle testimony of God’s power working in their lives. “Who would like to share a story of how God has helped them in the past few months?” This one simple question asked by Hrisi, our Children’s Director in Bulgaria, sparked a one-hour conversation among all of the kids during a recent afternoon activity.

One by one each child expressed their gratitude to the Lord for His help, provision, healing, and love. Finally, Mary,* one of the young teen girls who has been in our program for over six years, got up to share her story. For months her bankcard had been broken and she couldn’t replace it. She would keep all the pieces together and each time she would go to the bank she would pray that God would somehow make the ATM work when she put the fragile, pieced-together card in to withdraw money. And each time her faith expectations were met with a working card and a correct transaction.

After Mary finished her story, loud cheering and applause followed. All of the kids were so happy to build each other’s faith. They were also grateful for the opportunity to hear about God’s love through our program and to learn how to trust and rely upon Him for all of their needs.

It is in moments like these when we realize that nothing we are doing is in vain. The seeds of faith, the Bible teachings, the prayers, and the sponsorship are all working together and making a huge impact and a positive difference in the lives of the kids. It gives us the assurance that no matter what life may throw at them, the deposit of God’s truth in their hearts can and will help them.

As you know, trafficking and child abuse are the main reasons why we believe the sponsorship programs are of such importance for our kids in Bulgaria. Each year we have kids that go missing, or that are sold by their parents, or unjustly used for street-begging or slavery work. Sometimes we are able to rescue them and bring them back. But there are times when we, by ourselves, are helpless. Prayer for a miracle intervention in their lives is all we have to lean on…and it is then that we are reminded that no matter where they might be, God is still able to reach them; He is still able to put the broken pieces of their hearts together and to make them whole.

THANK YOU for helping us minister to the forgotten, the poor, and the brokenhearted. The needs may exceed our abilities to meet them, but we must always have eyes to see beyond the masses into each individual person. To every ONE with a need, there is ONE who could choose to meet it!

“To the whole world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the whole world.” – Pastor Bill Wilson, Founder – Metro World Child

* Name changed for protection purposes

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Because of Jesus we are Forgiven and Redeemed! Happy Easter!

12494770_10207998506056482_8434095542909308492_n-1You're one of them.” The girl met my numbed gaze with confidence that destroyed all intelligent argument. “I'm not. I...” The girl didn't wait for me to explain, but gave me a knowing look and moved off. I huddled closer to the fire, trying to get warm. What had Jesus said? “The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified....” Was this the moment we had hoped would prove theoretical? Doubts came from every direction. I tried to retaliate. What about the miracles? The way He forgave sins? Foresaw the future? A man who had hitherto remained in the shadows slouched closer. “Ain't you one of those followers of Jesus?” I shook my head meaningfully and shrugged nonchalantly, cringing at the hate in the man's voice. The sun was barely showing itself over the gray mountains. “You weren't one who was with Jesus?” “I swear it.” You will deny me three times before the rooster crows. His words from the night before hit me as I heard the crowing of a rooster. I felt that I had been stabbed. The door behind me opened, and some of the men came out, hauling Jesus behind them. The man in front stopped, surveying the crowd, and I raised my eyes to Jesus' face. He was looking back at me. The look in His eyes was one of knowing. Of pain. Of love. I felt sick, and I ran from that gaze. The tears tore out of me and I wept until I could not anymore. How was I supposed to go on? What did it matter that I had been taught by the Son of God? Where was I to go, and what was I to do? Only a few days later I was to know the answer. I was sitting alone, and suddenly he was there, and I was on my feet, before I knew he was there; before I knew I was on my feet.  Shame such as I had never felt before came over me and threatened to choke me; I had betrayed as surely as Judas had. The shame mingled with the new, unexpected feeling that I had done a great wrong, but that the wrong was righted- through Him, and by Him. I didn't know what the feeling was, but I felt it, and it gave me the courage to run to Him and throw myself at His feet. I knew I was weeping; I could not lift my eyes. “Why Lord, why would You find me and forgive me? I am not worthy to see Your face. I am not worthy.” “No,” He said. “I Am.” And it is His worthiness, His grace, that has allowed me to follow Him wherever He has called me. And it is that worthiness and grace that will give you strength for the purposes and plans God has called you to. {Luke 22:54-62, Luke 24:34, 1 Corinthians 15:5, Luke 24:7} Article written by Sara Scott, editor at Ceitci Demirkova Ministries DBA Changing a Generation
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Christmas is HERE: The Value of a Gift

10271_10207247894331658_4668000981569512030_n Christmas was only weeks away. I had asked for a cool race car set this year! Would I get it, or not? Finally it was here, Christmas morning! I was up by 5am looking under the tree. An eight-year-olds fantasy. There it was! A box that looked like a race car set—I was so excited. Because I believed I knew what it was, I saved that box for last. Mom and Dad and my brother grabbed the camera as I tore into the wrapping to find—a RACE CAR SET! But wait, it looked like the old one I had—it was even the old box. So let me tell you a story. I did not grow up in a family that had lots of money. A budget was always needed. Pinching pennies was the way to get by. So, when I unwrapped the gift, and pulled open the box---I saw my old cars and race track---then, my heart sank. To sidetrack some embarrassment to my parents I quickly said, “Oh, you got the old one fixed!” and I forced a smile on my face fighting back the disappointed tears. The present was not what I had expected. It had lost its value for me. Many kids get nothing for Christmas. In fact, many kids around the world don’t even celebrate Christmas with gifts and presents. So why are presents and gift giving so special? A gift is something given. Sometimes that gift may be of far greater worth to the giver than to the receiver. What I mean is, the value of a gift is not based on the value of who receives it, but on the sacrifice, value and love of the person giving it. Think about it. More hours go into finding it, buying it, wrapping it, and getting it to the right person at the right time. As the receiver, I simply tear it open and say, “Oh, boy, thanks!” So it is with God’s gift to us. The Bible speak of God so loving us that He gave---we receive. If we look at the gift God gave to us, some of us say, “It has no value for me.” And we set the gift aside. Probably for the moment we truly don’t see the value in the gift nor in the Giver. But God’s gift was His only Son. When I look at what He gave, I can better understand that the One who gave the gift created the value of it---it was not my receiving it that made it so special. And even though we may view the Giver of the gift with superior value, there is one twist the Bible points out that turns our thinking upside down, “And while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” The greatest portion of a gift is not just the value of the giver alone, but when the Giver values the receiver above the value of the gift---for God SO LOVED--- As you give this year, don’t focus on the value of what you took the time to give, but even more important, focus on the greater value of the one you are giving it to---for it will then be out of your love—YOU GAVE! Here’s the rest of the story---my brother stood up and pulled out another box—it was a brand new RACE CAR SET! I cried as I opened it, now knowing that this gift was truly a sacrifice for my parents. They gave the greater love, to one they loved even more---! Merry Christmas! Written By Gary Evans, Former Project Director @Changing A Generation
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Changing a Generation Receives 2015 Best of Burien Award

We are very honored to have been selected for a second year in a row as the winners of the Best of Burien Award in Washington State! Thank you to all of our friends and partners for being a vital part in the accomplishments of our non-profit! Press Release: CrystalBlue.png.md.cc.DEZW-RBB6-AT33 Changing a Generation Receives 2015 Best of Burien Award Burien Award Program Honors the Achievement BURIEN August 17, 2015 -- Changing a Generation has been selected for the 2015 Best of Burien Award in the Non-Profit Organizations category by the Burien Award Program. Each year, the Burien Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Burien area a great place to live, work and play. Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2015 Burien Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Burien Award Program and data provided by third parties.

About Burien Award Program

The Burien Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Burien area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value. The Burien Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in our community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to recognize the small business community's contributions to the U.S. economy. SOURCE: Burien Award Program CONTACT: Burien Award Program  
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Happy NEW 2015!

2015 – A Year of Significance

Webster dictionary describes ‘sig·nif·i·cance’ as the quality of being important; the quality of having notable worth or influence

New Year 2015We are standing at the doorway of another new year! Before you go any farther, I hope that you have or plan to take some time to reflect on what took place in your life throughout 2014.  What are some of your successes and how have you assimilated them? Have they become an internal part of you, or do they continue to remain external?  What are some of the mistakes and disappointments you have faced? How did you handle them? Be honest with yourself.  This is not a graded quiz, it’s personal; it’s for you to evaluate, to learn from and to integrate the lessons of your best achievements into future opportunities.

Perception and expectations play a significant role when it comes to facing the unknown. No one can predict the ‘exacts’ of all the good or the bad that a year could unfold.  When we stay in close connection to Christ, who is our ultimate source of life and truth, He can give us a revelation to understand each season and with that, adjust our focus and perception.

Year 2014 was a hard year for many including me and for our organization. While we've had many accomplishments, it still appeared as though we were stripped and ‘our ground looked bare’ on the outside. To recall, last January I wrote to you about Is. 54:2-4 from The Message, which says:

“Clear lots of ground for your tents!

Make your tents large. Spread out! Think big! Use plenty of rope, drive the tent pegs deep.

You’re going to need lots of elbow room for your growing family.

You’re going to take over whole nations; you’re going to resettle abandoned cities.

Don’t be afraid—you’re not going to be embarrassed. 

Don’t hold back—you’re not going to come up short.”

Many, including myself, focused on the growth and expansion these verses promised. Later as the year progressed, the Lord refocused my attention on the very first sentence: Clear lots of ground…  Aha!!! 2014 was a year of clearing the ground! If your life seems to look bare or at loss, don’t despair! We are entering 2015 – a year of significance! Its significance will be expressed in how far out we spread continuing to think big while in devastation or loss; by continuing to give and drive the tent pegs deep and far out so that we establish a platform of growth and change for the nations.

That is why it is important that we don’t enter 2015 with a hopeless expectancy and shrinking back due to negative setbacks in 2014.  Let’s recognize this new season and hold the awareness that after the grounds have been cleared, NOW it is time for growth and deeper development!

You got it! It’s time for us to spread out without fear! We will not be embarrassed or come up short!

Ground yourself for significance and noble influence! HAPPY NEW 2015! 

Watch HERE a special video greeting from Ceitci! Written by, Ceitci Demirkova (Founder & CEO)
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Merry Christmas

We would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas! Here is a special video greeting from our founder, Ceitci: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbHTY7vS18s 1920119_739047219512338_5544582834046939016_n
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Changing a Generation Receives 2014 Best of Burien Award

Burien Award Program Honors the Achievement

PlaqueBlue.png.lg.cc.DC98-QBB6-AT33BURIEN April 29, 2014 -- Changing a Generation has been selected for the 2014 Best of Burien Award in the Non-Profit Organizations category by the Burien Award Program.

Each year, the Burien Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Burien area a great place to live, work and play.

Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2014 Burien Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Burien Award Program and data provided by third parties.

About Burien Award Program

The Burien Award Program is an annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of local businesses throughout the Burien area. Recognition is given to those companies that have shown the ability to use their best practices and implemented programs to generate competitive advantages and long-term value.

The Burien Award Program was established to recognize the best of local businesses in our community. Our organization works exclusively with local business owners, trade groups, professional associations and other business advertising and marketing groups. Our mission is to recognize the small business community's contributions to the U.S. economy.

SOURCE: Burien Award Program

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Why Child Sponsorship Matters

20 percent of Bulgarian households live under the poverty line. 50 percent of the population are at risk of falling at or below the poverty line. This is the highest percentage in the EU. According to the EuroStat News Release in December 2013, 44 percent of the population are “severely materially deprived,” meaning they lack resources to sustain reasonable living conditions. These include failure to: pay rent on time; keep their home adequately warm; face unexpected expenses; eat proper amounts of protein every other day; and unable to purchase a car, washing machine, television, or telephone. According to EurActiv, in March 2010, only 11 percent of Bulgarian households brought in the proper amount to provide a four-member family of two adults and two children to cover their living expenses.

Many of the children we sponsor at Changing a Generation fall within these categories. The only appliances they might have are a refrigerator or a stove. Some of these children and their families sleep in the same room, sometimes 4-6 people in the same bed or living room. Changing a Generation helps these children with the daily necessities and resources they need, as well as the chance to help them grow and succeed in life, despite their circumstances. It is easy to forget what is happening across the world, especially when we aren't facing these issues on a daily basis. That is why, we would like to encourage you to sponsor a child, so they can receive education, proper attention and love. Ava wants to be a computer scientist, Aneliya wants to be a Chemist, or possibly a Literature Scholar, Asen wants to be a doctor. There are more of these kids who have big dreams. By sponsoring a child for $30 per month, you will be helping these kids reach their dreams and allow them to fulfill the plan God has for them. Thank you! Information Resources: http://www.euractiv.com/enlargement/bulgaria-poor-not-only-eu-standards-news-493653 http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/cache/ITY_PUBLIC/3-05122013-AP/EN/3-05122013-AP-EN.PDF http://www.novinite.com/articles/152387/20+of+Bulgarian+Households+Live+below+Poverty+Line  Written by Julia Penner – Creative and Media Administrator @Changing a Generation
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PROTECTING INNOCENCE

I can’t get his face out of my head. It wasn’t that he had the appearance of a superstar. There was nothing particularly unusual. It was just his smile… I was standing in line, waiting to be seated at a popular restaurant in town.  Everyone else’s faces were stoic, or frustrated at having to wait.   But this 30-something year old man had the smile of a child on Christmas.  And it didn’t leave the whole 15 minutes. I could tell he had some mild form of down-syndrome.  He was there with his parents, and he was just so…happy. There was such innocence and purity in his simple joy at knowing he was about to get some really great food. I couldn’t stop staring. The whole rest of the night my heart ached. It made me…sad. I was happy he was happy, but sad because I want to protect him so desperately.  I want to protect him from people who would try and give him a dose of “real life.”  I want to protect him from harm, wrongs, evil, pain, loneliness…but, all I can do is pray he never looses that simple happiness of getting some tasty food, or that smile that says, “I’m content.” It’s strange to feel this ache at someone’s joy. Usually, I only feel this way when I see pain.But, the ache in both situations is for the same reason – I AM called to protect and stand up for the innocent, the disabled, and those who cannot do it for themselves.  Proverbs 31:8-9 says, “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute. Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”  I may not always have the position to do this, but I will at every chance I get.  I will pray, and I will give to those who are working with the poor and destitute.  This is not just my heart being a “good person,” this is God’s commandment.  I can’t turn away anymore, I have to keep staring when I see a need, because I must act.  And, if I can do more than pray, I will. When I stand before God in heaven, and He asks, “What did you do for the least of these [people],”  I want to be able to say, “Whatever I could!” Written by Krinda Joy, Creative Arts Team
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7 Practical Ways to GET UNSTUCK – Part 5

HOPE MORE, FEAR LESS

Imagine yourself waking up every morning with a sense of excitement, hopeful expectancy of overcoming each obstacle no matter how small or big it may look like. You are a winner,                              a champion,                                                                                         an optimist,                                                                     effective and efficient in all you do each day.  You see all setbacks as temporary and you are calm and relaxed in potentially stressful situations! How does that make you feel as you read those words? Stop. Now think about it! photo Our free will, in combination with our ability to think and speak is a powerful force that can serve in moving us forward or setting us back when faced with the unexpected, or even during our so called ‘normal’ days. Since we have now approached the month of June, which marks the middle of 2013, some of us may feel stuck and unable to move forward to our DREAM 2013. We are fearful about the future as we listen to the news, and less hopeful about promises made to us by God and others. In his book, Personal Coaching for Results, Lou Tice, co-founder of The Pacific Institute in Seattle, WA says: Less Fear, More Hope. Just four little four-letter words, but when they are vividly felt as emotion, they are behavior-changing, life-changing, world-changing. No wonder that the hope or fear we experience in our hearts and minds, changes our body chemistry. No wonder that patients who feel hopeless recover more slowly and die sooner…” Simply put, the conclusion from the author’s research is that a change in expectation and belief, changes the result in either less fear or more hope.  The word “believe” is used on many occasions through out the Bible in reference to our trust and hope in God. On one occasion in Matthew 9:27-34, Jesus asked two blind men wanting to be healed, “Do you believe I can do this?” I love what happens next. Upon their quick reply, “Yes, we believe.” Jesus touched their eyes and said, “Become what you believe!” What a powerful statement! One change of expectation, one change of a belief, brings forth a new life, a miracle, and a new hopeful future. Ask yourself today, who is altering your belief and how? How would a shift in your focus on Christ and His greatness influence your day? It’s time to get unstuck by willfully changing our expectations and beliefs as we focus on MORE HOPE found in Christ and LESS FEAR of the unknown. Written by Ceitci #GetUNSTUCK™
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