This story was sent to us by our partners in India. ~The Mermaid Island
We thank God for His mighty works in our ministry and in families’ lives. Here is a true story how God takes care of the people who trust in Him.
Her name is Sandhya. She works alone to feed her two children Suraksha (16) and Aryan (14).
Sandhya had become very discouraged in carrying all the burdens of the family on her shoulders. There were no relatives or friends who supported or stood by her in her struggles. There were times when she felt like giving up on life.
Moreover she was not educated nor an outgoing person, just a very simple and mild lady.
There were many people who took her work and were not faithful to pay for her time and effort. She lost trust in people and grew tired of even trying, so disheartened was she of her life and family situation.
It was at that moment that God guided us to meet her and learn of her helpless situation. We were deeply sorry for her condition and prayed that God would open ways to bring her out of it.
We helped her to know that there is a person who loves her and really could help her out from all her sadness, tears, problems, and difficulties, and turn her situation into joy, peace, and happiness through our Lord Jesus Christ.
With great happiness she accepted Christ as her Savior and into her life.
We helped her by giving her the opportunity to work in our vocational tailoring center. Now she is a master tailor, cutting master, and also trainer.
Now she trains other new ladies who come to our center in tears and with no hope for their families’ survival. We were able to reach many other ladies who are suffering with similar life stories to sister Sandhya's.
So far we have been able to train 90-100 women in the last 4-5 years.
We were able to share God’s good news and the love of Christ with your helping hand and build up broken families.
Because of your support we were able to bring them from darkness to light, from sorrow into joy, from struggles to happiness.
These women are very happy they can feed their children three meals a day without depending on anybody, even their own husbands who often do not care for them as they should. We were able to support Sandhya's family needs and her children’s education all through your support.
We hope to train many more women to earn their livelihood and moreover we want to share Gods truth and light and help them to accept Jesus Christ as their personal savior, who can comfort them and stand with them through all their lifetime.
Thank you all for standing along with us to reach these broken lives and to build for the kingdom of God. The products we send are made by these broken lives, so please take them and be blessing to our ministry and to the women here in India.
You are wiping the tears of helpless women by choosing our products and supporting us.
In His Service,
Brother in Christ
Our Cotton Tote Bags are made at this vocational sewing school in rural Andhra Pradesh, India. Our Scarves are made in a connected group by weavers within the city of Hyderabad. 100% of proceeds from their sale go to supporting this ministry.
This is Nikola Dimovski. He's an artist from Macedonia. Every summer you can find him along the promenades of Malta selling his beautiful hand-made jewelry, and the rest of the year, you're likely to find him doing the same on the streets of his own native city, Skopje.
Nikola started making jewelry as a child, but when he went to learn a profession, he entered the field of carpentry. He loved working with wood, but, finding it hard to make a living with a mother, brother and sister to support, he decided to hand in his notice and go into business selling his own work.
"It's hard," he comments, "but I love my work."
Indeed, you can see that love as he describes his pieces and their inspirations, his hands moving deftly with pliers or bare fingers to fashion them, and in the pieces themselves: elegant twists of wire that enclose bright splashes of colored stone, glass, or shell in hundreds of designs and variations.
"It's difficult to say which is my favorite--they are like my children," he laughs.
In spite of the skills required to reach such a caliber of finesse, Nikola finds, as many artists do, that those buying from street venders are unwilling to pay more than a few euros. It's ironic, because when purchasing in a store, people are often willing to hand over three times as much, though the work may be mass produced in a factory.
Nevertheless, he finds pride and joy in being able to support himself and his family through his art.
"I need to make something that sells, that people like, and that doesn't take a long time to make."
He follows the fashions to see what is popular, but still doesn't produce anything he doesn't like. Someday, when he's retired, he'd like to work with wood again, and try filigree and chain mail and other arts that take more time.
In the meanwhile, he'll continue scattering bright bits of beauty across the globe, carried by the travelers whose eyes they catch as they pass by.
You can buy Nikola's work on The Mermaid Island, or you can order custom pieces by contacting his Facebook page, Versailles Royalty. Select pieces are also available at House of Ethical and on The Mermaid Island's Etsy extension.
I just finished three pieces which were inspired by my friend Viktoria's shop, Mint Sparrow.
Viktoria opened Mint Sparrow in February 2015. At first she just wanted to rent a space where she could do her work, but as visitors started dropping in, she decided to turn it into a shop. Soon artists from all over the islands caught wind of the place, and it wasn't long before it turned into a cooperative endeavor.
Now you'll find the mint-green walls, the reworked (upcycled) retro furniture, and the little nooks of the Maltese structure filled to brimming with hand-made jewelry, books, pillows, handbags and purses, and a whole line of remade clothing.
I decided to take a spin off the vibe in this mini bookcase and set of wooden bowls. I'd had the wooden pieces lying around for a long time.
First I made the books. Using an Exacto knife, I cut cardboard into small squares and rectangles. Next I took several harmonious colors of ribbed ribbon and glued it around each piece like a book cover.
Then I painted the bookcase with white acrylic paint. I didn't varnish because I wanted it to have a rustic feel. After it dried, I ordered the books in an aesthetically-pleasing way, and then took them out and lay them in lines. Next I put a generous amount of glue on one shelf at a time and settled the books in.
Finally, I took some clear plastic sheeting saved from some long-forgotten packaging and cut it to fit the windows.
I mixed some light pink and mint green colors using the acrylics and gave each bowl a quick paint. I got inspiration for the retro/primitive designs from artist Flora Chang.
I penciled them first (good thing, because I did need an eraser once or twice) and then covered the lines with pen and ink, the good old-fashioned way.
If you visit Malta, be sure to drop by at Mint Sparrow! You'll find it on Birkirkara Road in Ta' Giorni. You'll see some of my things there (including these), along a whole variety of other artists' work. Beautiful things, don't miss!
Mint Sparrow's Facebook Page
The Mermaid Island