We’ve been blessed to have Emily and her sister, Mary, as leaders and contributors to ACE for many decades. Both have led multiple teams – Emily through school mission groups and Mary leading medical trips – and both recently came down to serve with ACE together. Emily had some thoughts on her time with us in January:
If you have ever spent any time on an ACE trip, you’ve most likely helped with some type of construction work, painting, or mixing concrete. Or you’ve been part of a bucket brigade hauling rocks, loved on infirmary residents and helped with P.E. for students at a school. Or maybe you’re from the medical profession and have been a part of clinics and dental care.
But did you ever think that being a part of a cattle drive while on a trip would be added to that list?
My sister, Mary, and I had that very opportunity to be a part of ACE’s first cattle drive. Forty head of cattle had to be moved from one pasture to another, which seems like a pretty straightforward task… except that the other pasture was over a half mile away and involved crossing the road, running through the open field at Llanrumney, down a trail through the bush and then through a series of gates. After a couple hours of running, yelling, waving our arms and sweating, the job was completed. While this was an exhilarating and somewhat hilarious experience, it was an event that really highlighted the new face of ACE.
Since Covid has had its grip on the world, you may think that the work of ACE has been slowed down like everything else – that is definitely not the case. When God opened the door for ACE to purchase the 800+ acre Llanrumney property about a year and a half ago, it seemed like a huge step to purchase this piece of land, but now, looking back, we see how God had his hand in it the whole time. Here, God has provided countless natural resources for the ministry to use and market, some yet to be discovered. It has opened the door to employ more single mothers, create a safe haven for families to spend quality time together and to have a larger impact in the local farming community.
And most importantly, it is opening doors for Marla and the staff to share the love of Christ to these individuals with whom they come in contact.
It has also allowed the ACE staff to grow stronger together as a family. To stand back and watch them work extremely hard together while laughing and joking with each other was such a joy. While waiting for the cows to decide to move in the right direction, I went down the list with some of the ladies of all the things they know how to do, from cleaning, cooking, construction, tutoring, planting, harvesting; the list goes on – and now includes cattle driving. Even though the mission teams are few, the work of ACE continues through its amazing staff who have developed new skills and such compassion for their community.
You may be thinking, does ACE need me anymore? Yes! They absolutely do, more than ever. All of this work is just in its beginning stages and there is so much to be done. I encourage you to get a small group of friends or family together and plan a trip down. Yes, there are a few more inconveniences that you have to experience to travel, but, in the end, it’s so worth it.
And if you’re not able to travel, there are other ways to be involved. Any financial contribution to help move the ministry in this direction would be of great benefit. Finally, you can be involved through prayer. Oswald Chambers writes, “Prayer does not fit us for the greater work, prayer is the greater work.” Pray for the ministry as it moves forward, for the staff, for finances and thank God for opening the doors that He has and the provisions He has given… even for the provision of cows to eat the lush grass that is on the land, God, in His foreknowledge, so graciously provided.