Painting of Young Girl

I found this painting in a market stall in Beijing years ago while enjoying a stop over on our way home to CA for a family visit. My husband and I were living in Linjiang at the time while he built a diatomaceous earth processing plant for the community and I worked to begin our ministry. We were rarely able to take photos in the beginning, and I counted this painting a gift to show to our friends and sponsors at home. 

The fear on this young girl's face is the face that we met in our work, and still meet sometimes. The cold concrete walls of her house, the starkness of the world outside her blue framed window, the thick coat worn indoors to protect her from the sub-zero temperatures that permeate indoors. 

Life is still this hard in Linjiang.

In the beginning of the ministry, before many had learned of us, our arrival to a needy family was unannounced and completely unexpected by them. We were always accompanied by government officials, whose request for help took us to these dear people. Foreigners were rarely seen then, if ever, and none had ever ventured into the villages. More often than not, I was met with fearful, distrusting faces, just like we see in the face of the lovely young woman in our painting.

We have unlimited love for the people of Linjiang. 

It’s a gift from God that springs up in us when we meet them, as we care for them, as we build relationships with them. They don’t usually trust us or even like us in the beginning.  In time, though, they learn that we are faithful to our promises to return with the help they need.  As long as God calls us and provides, we will deliver the gifts of provision to them with love. 

Winter there is coming soon. As I write, men and women are beginning to gather their crops and cutting firewood if they are young and strong.  Mothers and grandmothers are knitting warm clothing in preparation for the coming cold and snow. The oxen have begun to grow thick fur coats with long chin whiskers that will soon be dripping in icicles. Temperatures will reach below zero every day, often -20 degrees or more in the coldest months. Homes are heated with only a small wood-burning stove fed with firewood.  Imagine this with no food or no firewood. 

Imagine your child walking two miles to school through this cold in canvas shoes and thin coat, having had no breakfast. 

Worse, imagine not having money to pay the school fee and the child staying home with no hope for a better life, or a way out of this cruel poverty. These situations are very real and too commonplace in Linjiang.

Please help us. We are trustworthy to deliver your gifts to alleviate their suffering this winter. Together, we’ll help to provide food, clothing, and heat. We will pay the school fees so the children will go to school. They will even be able to plan to graduate from technical school or university if they can earn the grades.  The cycle of poverty in these lives will be broken and replaced with Opportunity and Hope.   

Cindy Reynolds
Founder of Threshold Ministries, Inc.


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