Creative ways to solve big problems


There’s a hunger crisis happening in the world. While this isn’t new, it seems like hunger issues are getting more severe while technology and communication of the problem increases.

While I’ve never worked with them, I love seeing groups like the people who work with this miracle food, Plumpynut.

Check this out…  It’s a combination of locally grown peanut butter mixed with powdered milk and a vitamin pack.  Their website says a 3-week supply can literally save the life of a child.  Thinking not only with the head, but with the heart is such a good thing. 

We at Convoy of Hope have communictated with the PlumpyNut people, and who knows what partnerships could be ahead.

There are solutions still to be found, and I hope some of our interns find some of those solutions.

Here’s a good place to mention the moringa tree. Many of our interns, and Convoy of Hope family members have worked with this miracle tree. This site describes them well,  Maybe I’ll talk more about them another time.


Calibrate conversation with Mark Entzminger

I had a recent conversation with Mark Entzminger, the DYD of South Dakoda.  He “called” to  chat about Convoy of Hope, our interns and more.  It’s to preview a bit of their Calibrate Conference this fall.  Here’s the conversation…

Calibrate Conference: Matt Wilkie from Mark on Vimeo.

Read more at Mark’s blog,  The blog is full of resources and ideas…


Enjoying the aeropress

aeropressOur french press broke. While researching which new one to purchase, I found this…

It’s pretty poor marketing, but it makes a great cup of coffee. I’ve been making an aeropress cup each morning. My friend at the Coffee Ethic in Springfield even said they may start carrying them someday. They just need better marketing…

EE-TAOW It’s True!

There are still millions of people who’ve never heard that Jesus is the Son of God…some have never even heard his name. 

The story of Jesus, and what He means is powerful…and it doesn’t begin in the New Testament.  In the Wednesday night Bible Study at my church, I recently shared this story of EE-TAOW, which means, “It’s True!”  The story is about some indigenous people in Papua New Guinea, near where I spent 3 months back in ’03.  In fact, here’s a man I met on the trip…



Here’s a clip from EE-TAOW from the web…and it can be ordered on line.  Good stuff…

Here are some boys I met on the same island where the video was filmed…


I was once a soccer player

Yesterday, the team and I were in the room with Jorel who’s a soccer (futbol for my Spanish speaking friends) freak. Since he leaves with the team tomorrow for Haiti, and since he’ll have very little opportunity to view his game of choice, we watched some of the Manchester United game against Blackburn. Manchester United won. Great.

I’m not much of a soccer guy, but back in the day I was one scary, intimidating monster on the field.

It was 1980 just after Mt. St. Helen’s erupted. We were the volcanoes. Other than on playgrounds around the world, as an outmatched older guy against elementary kids, I’ve not played since.


I’ve been pondering the ascension…

In the mid-late 90’s, I shared with the Park Crest college group from Philip Yancey’s book, “The Jesus I Never Knew.” Great book. I’ll confess I’d forgotten his thoughts on the ascension. I revisited the book and his thoughts a few months ago, and have pondered them since. Without getting too theological, or footnoted, etc. here are my conclusions. These are simple thoughts, but a new perspective for me.

If Jesus were here today, there would be two really big things happening:

1. People would do everything they could to get near him to ask Him to help them, heal them, pray for them, etc. It would be like this, but 1000 times over. He would help the poor.

2. People who loved Jesus would be clamoring to find ways to serve Him…can I get you some tea? Can I wash your feet? Here, have the comfortable seat, etc. It would be like Mary and Martha but 1000 times over. People would serve Him.

Jesus isn’t here (at least physically). He ascended. He’s not back yet. But…

1. People still need help. Since He’s gone, we can be stand in for Him and do our best to help those in need. As Audio Adrenaline sang a long time ago, we can be “His hands, His feet.” We can help the poor.

2. We can serve Him as we would if He were present in the “Can I get you some tea or wash your feet” sense. We do so when we serve others. In fact, that’s the point of much of Matthew 25, which says, “When you do this unto the least of these, you do this unto me”. We can serve Him.

Anyways…as you can see, #1 and #2 happen simultaneously when we serve others in His name.

These are some of the thoughts I’ve been pondering since mid-December. Our interns leave for Haiti on Monday to do just that. I’ll join them in the Caribbean soon. My friend Travis just left for Honduras to do just that, you can read more here.


New memorization venture…

I’ve wanted to memorize and pray for all the countries of the world for about 5 years. I figured since I’ve actually started, that blogging about it may help provide added accountability.

I heard a speaker at Book of Hope quite some time ago. His name is Dick Eastman and he’s with a ministry called Every Home for Christ.

If I remember correctly, he spoke of praying for every country in the world every day on his way to work, or wherever he was going that day. I love that idea. Of course, it’s a listing thing where he would simply fly through a list. However, with his decent knowlege of the world a passion for those people, and a greater love for God, I bet some cool things happen in response to those prayers.

The prayer…

  • helps keep his passion alive and growing.
  • reminds him to pray for the places he’s been and the people he’s met
  • helps him be more aware when he hears of places on the news or in conversation
  • connects him with the desire God has to receive worship from the nations
  • is heard by our Savior, who responds

He passed out prayer maps that day. I have mine with me most of the time, wanting to actually start the memorization process. The idea is to pray for a few countries a day each day for a month, but I like the idea of just learning them all. I’ve told other intern teams of my desire to learn them all. Haven’t done it. Will do so starting now, or last week actually.

Click here to see the list.

I’ve gotten Africa, but am a bit worried about all of those Oceanic islands. Wish me luck…or even order the map (it’s free). Accountability in cyberspace has arrived.


Not quite the first day of school, but…

On my first day of kindergarten, Mom walked with me much of the way to school…and then as she stopped just short of the destination, she took a photo of me walking the rest of the way by myself (carrying a gift wrapped fancy hanky for Mrs. Harper). I’m pretty sure she cried.
Perhaps it’s hyperbole to compare the two events, but this morning I watched the spring ’09 intern team head to Galveston, Tx. They’re on the road now…sans fancy hankies. They’ve worked hard during our training time, gotten to know each other, discussed a ton of issues related to missions and compassion work in our country and around the world, learned about water filters, relief/development, AIDS, appropriate technologies and more…and now they’re off to help. Here’s my view from the Convoy of Hope porch.

They’ll be in Galveston then the Caribbean, then Georgia (the Atlanta one, not the Tbilisi one like last time).
I’ll join them in Dallas next week before they head out internationally.

Here’s the last photo before they headed out. Most slept little last night as they packed and cleaned, but they’re likely asleep now (except for Karen, the driver).

Please keep them in prayer as they’ll be gutting homes in Galveston, Tx, while working with local churches to help those in the community. It’s still a devasted area.