Thursday, September 29, 2011

Kids give back. (Story behind the pictures on Wordless Wednesday)

One year old twins have signs of malnutrition and their grandmother is clearly overwhelmed with caring for them and their 3 year old brother and 5 year old sister. So nineteen young people and six adults from GSF went to clean the compound and mud hut. Our desire is that the grandmother will be able to keep all 4 grandchildren and that we will be able to help her do that.

We cleared out the two huts and then cleaned the huts and compound.

Some of the kids dug while others gave all four children baths. Most of the things that were done that day were initiated because a kid saw a need and did it.

The biggest need besides actually cleaning the house was the mound of laundry that needed to be washed. And no washing machines here just the 5 finger variety. (okay, so the picture I posted doesn't show them actually working but I opted for the picture where they were not leaning over--I think you understand and I know they appreciate it).

Here's some fun pictures after the bathing.

In Uganda, all twins receive a name according to their birth order and gender. For example in this family the first born twin is the girl so her Luganda name is Babirye and and the second born twin is the boy so his name is Katto. The neat thing is that we have twins at GSF who are Babirye and Katto. In fact, here below are the two Babiryes having fun together.

The four children dressed in new clothes and bathed.

So when I got to this picture, I just had to laugh. I didn't even know it was taken. Not sure what I was thinking but I do know that going to the village always causes me to reflect a lot. In fact, it takes me awhile to process what I see. Maybe as I was waiting for someone to bring me a clean rag, I was starting to reflect on it all.

Grateful for what I have and what I can give!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Justine's Baby

Monday night, I got a text from my helper saying labor pains have begun. It is always a reason to pray but from all the stories I have heard, I am even more apt to pray here for a momma in labor! So all night, I woke periodically and whispered a prayer for Justine and this new baby coming into the world and then I would fall back asleep. The next morning close to 6 o'clock, Justine's husband called me and said, "We have a boy here!" I was so thrilled and began praising God. Justine and the baby were well! On Thursday, Mark, our matron, Julianna and I went to see Justine and her family and of course the new baby. Here are some pictures of our time there!

Introducing Emmanuel Jethro!

He let me hold him and I was thrilled!

My sweet friend and her sweet baby

Some of Justine's boys, James, her husband, and two of their boys, Jotham and Dixon

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Not one of them is missing

We have encountered several situations in the past few weeks in which we just don't know how to move forward in order to help families and children. My heart has ached to see people suffer. I have woken up in the night with their faces etched in my memory. My heart wants to run in and rescue but my mind knows that I can't or that it is not what is best in this situation. But as I read the following verse today, I realized I have no right or even obligation to worry because if He is in control of each star He is in control of each child I see.

Lift up your eyes on high and see who has created these stars. The one who leads forth their host by number, He calls them all by name; Because of the greatness of His might and the strength of His power. Not one of them is missing. Isaiah 40:26

My God has not been surprised by the situations I have been shocked by lately. As my mother-in-law says, "He didn't spill his coffee when he read the morning news." He is in control and His might is great and the His power strong!

As I say to the house mothers and aunties, "Praise God, alleluia!" and they say, "Amen" or "Amina"

Saturday, September 17, 2011


Meet the reason we have been able to live in Uganda as long as we have. . .
Our helper, Justine

Okay so I admitted it, I am not super woman and cannot make all my food from scratch, wash, hang out, iron and fold all our clothes, sweep and mop and keep our tropical house clean from all the dust and dirt and so many other things and also direct child care for 80 kids and be the mom and wife I need to be. So I have an incredible super woman who has been my helper for the three years we have lived in Uganda.

I am grateful for her and God has given her to our family as a blessing. She is now expecting her 5th baby and is over due. We are praying for a quick and soon delivery and for safety for she and the baby.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Prayer Update

We first want to say that we are humbled, grateful, and encouraged by the response we received from our last blog post. We want to say thank you to so many who prayed for us and encouraged us. Here's our update on the 3 requests we gave:
  1. The virus seems to be dying down but we still are getting new cases. The praise has been that as we asked, our vulnerable children have been protected from this virus. It actually has been amazing! God is so good. Many school children and workers and even our girls have gotten or now have the virus. Thank you for your continued prayers for this.
  2. Yesterday, we had almost a 24 hour stretch with power which was a great refresher for all of us on this no power marathon and a help to the budget in regards to using fuel for the generator! The people at the power company seem to be helpful but it is just a struggle for all of Uganda.
  3. The team is here and has had a wonderful 3 days of clinics. In answer to prayer, they were able to see everyone here who needed to be seen and many others. They are in some of the nearby villages this afternoon seeing some of the grandmas of the kids in the feeding program. Many people have been helped.
Thank you for praying. Your prayers and encouragement is what has sustained us this week. We so appreciate it!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Asking for prayer

I am realizing all the more that our readers and followers are also ones who pray for us. Here are a few needs

  • There is a cold virus going around at GSF. Several ways to pray for this:
  1. Fortunately most of our very vulnerable kids (HIV and special needs kids) have not gotten it. Please pray for protection for these kids in particular!
  2. Our Nurse Katie who just arrived 4 weeks ago and started working solo on Tuesday (literally Nurse Sarah left on Tuesday about the time several kids first started complaining of the virus). Katie began to get sick today. Pray for quick healing for her.
  3. Titus was one of the first to get the virus and was doing better yesterday but started a fever again tonight. I have also had it since Thursday and haven't been able to shake it yet. Pray for protection for the rest of the family.
  • Power outages. Power has been off a lot this week. We need power to run the water pump system at GSF. We have run our generator so much this week that we are almost out of fuel. Mark was talking with the power company's Area Director today and told her we were going to pray. . . she told him to please pray for the whole country because everyone is suffering. I don't understand it all, but Uganda doesn't have enough power. They are building another hydroelectric dam but it is not ready yet and there are economic issues at hand as well. Please pray for Uganda. We trust God to provide for us.
  • We have an eye medical team coming this week. They were en route today from the States and missed a flight because of mechanical difficulty. Pray for grace and rest for them in all of their travels. With one less clinic day, please pray that this team will accomplish all that God has in store for them.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Megan is 12!!!

Twelve years ago today, we were given a pretty incredible and very beautiful gift. Our Megan Elizabeth was born on 9/9/99 which I have to say is a pretty cool birth day. A very Happy Birthday to our sweet Megan! So thankful for you and love the way you think outside of the box and challenge me to do the same.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

He holds your future, Sweet girl!

I picked up Mercy this morning when I walked into the church and held her as we sang. We began to sing, Because He lives.

"Because He lives, I can face tomorrow. . ."

I looked at Mercy and began to think about her tomorrows and that surely they will be much better than her yesterdays. When she arrived at the hospital and then at GSF, she was balled up and could barely move. But at church I was holding her with her back, arms and legs straight. She is just beginning to hold her neck up on her own.

"Because He lives, all fear is gone."
"Because I know He holds the future."

At this point I began to cry because, even though I don't know if Mercy will ever walk, I know who does and who can cause her to walk. Even though I don't know if Mercy will ever see, I know who does and who can give her sight. HE HOLDS HER FUTURE! I imagine her running around someday possibly with glasses to help correct her eyesight. But even if not. . .

And life is worth the living
Just because He lives!