Pure and undefiled religion in the sight of our God and Father is this : to visit orphans and widows in their distress, and to keep oneself unstained by the world. -James 1:27

Monday, December 22, 2008

My favorite Christmas Carol

I have never really thought about which carol was my favorite until about 3 years ago, when I sang this one while reading the words I was singing. Since then, it has become my favorite. I invite you to turn on your favorite version of this song on your computer as you read the words that speak so truly of the meaning of the season.

Oh Holy Night

O holy night! The stars are brightly shining,
It is the night of our dear Saviour's birth.
Long lay the world in sin and error pining,
'Til He appear'd and the soul felt its worth.
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices,
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn.

Fall on your knees! O, hear the angels' voices!
O night divine, O night when Christ was born;
O night divine, O night, O night Divine.

Led by the light of Faith serenely beaming,
With glowing hearts by His cradle we stand.
So led by light of a star sweetly gleaming,
Here come the wise men from Orient land.
The King of Kings lay thus in lowly manger;
In all our trials born to be our friend.

He knows our need, to our weakness is no stranger,
Behold your King! Before Him lowly bend!
Behold your King, Behold your King.

Truly He taught us to love one another;
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother;
And in His name all oppression shall cease.
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name.

Christ is the Lord! O praise His Name forever,
His power and glory evermore proclaim.
His power and glory evermore proclaim.

I also was surprised this morning when the sermon at Austin Stone Community Church used this song as a basis and further explained the greatness of the verse "And in His name all oppression shall cease." (the sermons are available on podcasts or on the website if you are interested). So, all this to say, that truly Jesus is the reason for the season and I continue to have my eyes opened to the wonder, grace, and greatness of what my Savior means and did for me! Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Ghetto Thugs...

Bag ......................................................................... $5
Journal .................................................................... $10
Blockbuster rental ..................................................... $5.56
Bible ....................................................................... $25
Ghetto thugs breaking into the car
and stealing all my support letters
and prayer cards .................................................. priceless

Yes, it is true. I was in Houston this weekend and someone broke the window of the car and stole the bag with my prayer cards and thank you/support letters. SO lame. And that is all they got. There was nothing else valuable in the car, and I know this stuff is not valuable to anyone but me. BUT I am sure they were very surprised (and dissapointed) when, instead of a bag to earthly treasures, they found the Bible and all my secrets (in my journal). Hopefully the Lord will use it to change their hearts and draw them closer to Him.

SO... to all my family and friends outside of MBC... there has been a minor delay, but your letters are coming.

Other than that, I had a great visit in Houston.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

I like to think I am becoming an amature photographer...

I just got my "fancy camera" back from being cleaned and I was very eager today, while the weather was not too cold, to get out on the streets of Austin and take some photos. I really like taking shots of people, but still feel a bit shy and intrusive blatently taking their photo. So i have this technique of holding the camera at my waist, pointing it at the person I want to photograph, and then pretening like I am looking somewhere else as I blindly snap the shot. Needless to say this is not the most effective method. But i did realize a trick that i can take more "artsy" photos by purposely tilting the camera a bit, which corrects the unintentional tilt that normally happens by making the tilt intentional. Ok... so here is what i got today.
One stop I made was at the Capital.

This is where the legislation meets.

And while I was there, there was a group dressed up singing Christmas carole's so of course I sat on a bench and listened. What a delight.

Now for other sights in Austin...

The Hike and Bike trail is my absolute favorite part of Austin!!

At Mayfield Park

I had fun playing with my fish-eye lense. Unfortunately my photo-shoot got cut short because I had to go to an appointment. But there are many more great sights of Austin to capture and I hope to do that soon.

Monday, December 1, 2008


Wow. December first all ready! I really can't believe that. Time does fly so fast.

Well, I had a WONDERFUL Thanksgiving. Monica and I started the day with a 5 mile run. We did the Turkey trot with about 12,000 other Austinites. It was fun. The day before, Monica invited me to come with her to a friends because we were all tie-dying tshirts for the race. The morning of, we met up together but quickly got seperated as some wanted to run and others wanted to walk. I was the only one that ended up running the whole way (time was 53 min, which included time to stop and visit a family that I knew that was also doing the race).

We had Janece's side of the family over to our house and had all the Thanksgiving works. I was definitely grateful that I was not in charge of all the cooking this year. So, I ate way too much but enjoyed every bite. We even had a little presentation time, where my cousin gave his school speech about is ancestry to us. It was very cool because he was named after his great-uncle who was killed in the line of duty as a soldier (way back when) and so part of the presentation included old war letters that were written home. I guess I have never heard any letters about someone I was somehow connected with. I personally was able to relate and I liked that. I also was able to show the DVD I made about my time in Uganda. It was probably the 20th time that I have watched it, but I still have a huge smile on my face as I see the kids at LCH. I just can't help but grin.

Then Janece and I ventured out on Black Friday and made a full day of shopping. Who knew I could last so long in so many stores (about 8 total). But we successfully found all the decor needed for our bare kitchen walls.

I was trying to document some things in my journal last night and I was amazed at how many formal opportunities the Lord has allowed me to boast in His name already. And there are only more to come. I have never felt like much of a public speaker, but I guess it makes all the difference if you are passionate about what you are speaking on.

This week I am car-less, but I have much preparations to do for my upcoming garage sale. Yep, well it is more like a warehouse sale, but not with my stuff. The Flacks have donated a whole warehouse full of stuff for me to sell so I am very eager to see how much I will be able to add to my support money.

I am still in touch with Glenn over in Uganda and he tells me that everything is going well. The kids are in their final week of school for this school year (their school year begins in Feb and they have 3 terms). So, they are taking exams and eager for their upcoming, long holiday. I think about the kids everyday but don't miss them as much as the last time I was in the states because I know that I will see them again soon. They are so sweet and that will be a great reunion.

Well, nothing more is really happening.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Give me words to speak...

Well, I have been blessed the past 2 weeks to have been able to borrow a car. So, seeing as my ability to move about past where my feet can walk me, I have used my time wisely. And the holidays are coming so many weekends are occupied by wonderful family events.

So, in the past few weeks God has been very faithful in allowing me the opportunity to boast in His name and the work He is doing at LCH.

My first appearance of public speaking was at Flatonia Baptist Church, where my Granny goes and makes sure I am on their weekly prayer list J. It was a Wed. night fellowship and I had a lot of fun getting to speak with them. Monica, my sister, also was there which was so good to have her support and advice as to what to do different the next time. It was really great to see my Granny and Bob and just catch up on life. Also, the sweet little dog, Gracie, that I inherited from my mom and then had pass on to my aunt when I graduated college (due to life plans not really fitting with having a dog). Little Gracie has been living with Granny and she was still just as cute as ever with her little snaggle tooth smile.

Yesterday, I went a Christian school in San Antonio and was able to speak at my good friends, Kimo and Kim’s, class as well as 2 other classes. Most of these classes were little 3rd graders that ask the greatest questions so I enjoyed talking with them a lot. And then I spoke to my largest crowd so far, a group of college students at Texas State involved with Crosstalk. This was great because some people involved with Crosstalk were in Uganda this summer and started their own non-profit (ichooseyou.net) to help the kids in the neighborhood behind me who go to my church there. They are also having a benefit on Friday and are using some of my photography to decorate and sell in an auction (I also will have a few that I can sell for my own personal fundraising). I feel kinda like a professional photographer now. Wow, blown up, displayed, and auctioned. Awesome.

In addition to speaking engagements, I was also sponsored to attend the Walk to Emmaus, which was a weekend long spiritual retreat. Without going too much into it, it turned out to be such a blessing and refreshment to my heart. I witnessed the most beautiful display of love and the closest feeling of heaven that I have yet experienced in my life. Thanks again Angie and Derrick for making the weekend happen.

I was also able to spend some time with my beloved Beelers and have been organizing a warehouse full of stuff that was donated to me to hold a garage sale.

So, needless to say I have been a busy woman. I am really looking forward to the holiday week of Thanksgiving so that I can just spend time at home with my family.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Life in the fast lane...

Well, it is hard for me to believe how quickly my time is going. I have almost been in the US for a month now. Wow. And I can say now that I do feel like I have adjusted past the
"re-integration" shock. That is good because for a while big groups were a bit overwhelming and exhausting. But I bless the Lord for His help in adjusting. He is my Rock and consistent in all circumstances.

I have my first official speaking "gig" (for lack of better word... I know there is one buy my mind has blanked) at my Granny's church tomorrow night (Flatonia Baptist Church). Surprisingly, I don't feel as nervious as expected. Hopefully my nerves will stay subdued tomorrow. I feel much better about speaking though because I just get to boast in the Lord and what He is doing at LCH and how much I love the kids. That is easy enough.

I can't believe how my time will fly by being here. As I look at my calendar, dates are already getting filled up by visits or holiday events.

And I have already been blessed to see the Lord move in provision in different areas that I have prayed for. I love how He works all things in His timing and perfectly. Truly my heart rejoices.

So, that is a little update on me. Hope you are well and I would love to hear from you (especially since there will not be a 20 second delay in our speaking, like it is when I am in Africa!)

Monday, November 3, 2008

A story about Pops-to-the-cops

So, I wish you all could spend some time with my Dad. He is so great but such a weirdo at times. You really never know what he will come up with next. For example: On Halloween afternoon I saw him peeping over the fence talking with someone. He comes back inside and says, “Hey Nat, I just met the neighbors and they invited me to their party. Want to go?” Well, no. But then later I walk into the garage and see Dad and Monica acting suspicious at his work bench. I walk out and they turned their heads quickly to see if I was coming. So I asked what they were up to and Dad said that they were making his costume. Well, all I saw was an old hat and some thick masking tape. Monica had cut a piece and Dad instructed her to write “Nn” on it. Then he taped it to the hat.

Of course we both look at each other thinking, “Ok, Dad is crazy.” Monica asked what it meant and he proudly replied that we must guess. We had no idea and told him it must be inappropriate if he won’t tell us. He insisted it wasn’t but kept telling us to guess. “WE DON’T KNOW, DAD!” He pulls up his pants really high and says, “I am the Neighborhood Nerd. N-N.” Wow. Who knew he could be such a dork. Then Janece pulled up and he tried to make her guess. When she had failed he told her just as proudly as he told Monica and I, as if it were the best idea of a costume because 1. he made it up and 2. he didn’t have to spend anything on it.

Needless to say, he went to the party solo. Ha. I love my Dad!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Lost in Transition

So, I feel like the first few days of being home were great. I probably looked like a little kid in a candy shop, wide eyed at everything. Not that THAT much has changed, but just not seeing/using/experiencing/tasting it in a while. I did a lot of small errands that have been on my to-do list and got to do some shopping for new clothes!

But I feel like this week has been more of the “culture shock” time. Not really “shock” persay because I knew what to expect since this is not my first time to come from another country back into the US. But more like a “lost in transition between cultures”. There are some things that have just come back to me, like driving on the right side of the road and getting around Austin. (I guess 23 years of Austin roads are ingrained in me). But there are other things that I do feel a bit funny with. Here are a few stories:

Story #1: I was in the kitchen visiting with Dad the other night while he was beginning to prepare dinner. He asked me if I could help by slicing some onions and carrots. Sure. No problem. The first slice he advised me to cut them a bit thicker. The second slice I thought to myself, “It is cutting so smoothly. Wow, this knife is really sharp.” And then third slice, (I am sure you can guess what happened next)… yep, the onion slid a bit and then I sliced my finger. Not too bad. But immediately I said, “Oh. Dad. We have an injury,” with my hand above my head. His response, “Already Nat?! What? Did you not cook in Africa?” Well, no not really. At first I cooked on Sundays but then I realized it was A LOT of work to prepare everything from scratch and they weren’t that excited about eating my American cuisine. So, I stopped cooking. Plus—who knew that Dad keeps his knifes as sharp as swords used in Medieval battles?

Story #2: I think people at the stores think I might be a bit slow or not all there. Yesterday, I walked to a little coffee shop near my house. When I went to the counter to order I know I looked and acted a bit confused. Ordering coffee, something that is a great pastime for me, took great effort to think about. Now what did I normally get and what sort of details do I need to tell them? So, instead of the cool coffee lingo, I ended up asking the lady if she could make my coffee with skim milk. I kinda giggled at the look on her face when she answered yes. Like she was thinking, “Um, Hello? Has this lady (being me) never come to a coffee shop before?!” I got my coffee and realized that I forgot something in my order—extra hot. But next time I know, “Non-Fat vanilla Latte-extra hot, with a dollop of whip cream.” I will not be defeated again by the coffee shop order. I also get a bit confused when using American Dollars verses the Uganda Shilling that go by thousands. One US dollar is equivalent to about 1600/Ush. But the lady was very nice and patient. It turns out that her husband is from Kenya and so I think we will have something to talk about next time I come in.

Story #3: Really this is just to let you know so that you too don't make fun of me (I know it is all in love though)... sometimes I speak with a bit of a British accent. I can't help it! I teach British style phonics to little African kids! Their short "i" sounds like our long "e" and they accentuate different areas of words. So, just be ready.

Other than that, nothing really else new. Feel free to call me if you want to chat. I am usually at home. 512-339-4318. I will try to post MUCH more pictures soon but right now my computer went crazy and is not exactly working right now. So, give me some time and I will have those up. I am also wanting to come to visit the major cities of Texas, so if you live in one of them and have a time that you suggest is better to come then let me know by email.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Home safely

Hi. I am now back in Texas, using the high speed internet, sitting without fear of the power going out or without the music of the mosquitos buzzing around. Jac and I had an EXTREMELY long flight back home (27 hours in total) but made it with all luggage. We had a fun time during the journey though. Four of the kids and 2 moms came with us, along with Glenn. They were dressed in their best as they came to get us from Pastor's house. I think it is a common trend for people coming from smaller towns to dress up to come to the "big" city. The boys looked cute in their little pin on ties though. Everything went great during the ride there and we eat whole fish by lake Victoria to end our time in Uganda.

With a few teary eyes, we hugged and kissed our goodbyes and the kids proceeded to go to the top story of the airport to see the planes take off and land. During our first flight, Jac and I decided it would be a good idea to stay up all night and take advantage of the hundreds of movies we had at our fingertips. We learned later in our journey, when we were exhausted but our bodies were too tired of the cramped flying postition to sleep, that this was a bad idea, seeing as we didn't get in the air until around 11pm. Well, I made it through 2 movies and then crashed. We were able to find these nice lounge-type chairs in Amsterdam's airport and slept a bit. Kind of awkwardly though seeing as we were trying to keep and arm or leg though our luggage that sat beside us.

The security in Amsterdam was really intense and i was glad Jac was there cause I was too tired and felt like he was trying to force me to be guilty during his questioning. Then at the xray luggage station they stopped my purse. I realized I had a tiny pocket knife, which the laughed at and let me keep, but he did empty my bag and saw how many sweeties I had taken from the previous flight. In case you didn't know... with KLM, if you go to the back of the plane when everyone else is sleeping, they serve water and all sorts of snack size chocolate bars. I went first and brought one of each kind for me and Jac. She then went and came back in a sneaky way, dumping a whole handful on my lap. Ha, it was really funny but we enjoyed them ALL!

The second flight I met a really nice lady who was coming home from Ukraine with her husband and the new daughter they just adopted. It turns out that she just published a christian-fiction type book that comes out in Feb. It was cool to talk with her and tell her about LCH. I hope this is the first of MANY conversations that I get to boast in the Lord! There wasn't much sleeping on this extra long flight because my body was feeling too much like an old woman and couldn't get comfortable. As we landed, we had less than an hour to book it off the plane, through customs, get our luggage, check it back in, and then run a small marathon to reach the gate in the proper terminal. BUT, praise the Lord we made it with 5 minutes to spare.

When we arrived in Austin, we were only expecting Janece to pick us up because she works close to the airport. I was so surprised to see Dad and Monica there too. Then from behind the corner, 6 of our Tim Teamers (a discipleship program we did together) came running at us with open arms and a sign. It was so great to see them but so sureal and we were exhausted. Thanks for coming guys!!!

The first meal home, back in the US after a year... Chuys!! Oh I love mexican food. I think i might have drewled as I walked in the door.

So, now I am here in Austin. Jac left today and tomorrow all the family will be going to work so it will be my first real day to process and be by myself. It is kinda weird to be back but in another way it seems like i was never gone. The best way to describe it is that i feel like i am in a time warp. I don't feel like time has passed much, yet i know that a lot has changed. I think the catch up is going to be where my "quality time love language" comes in. It is too hard for me to just sit down an try to catch up on a year. But as I spend time with people the stories just start flowing. So, please don't be offended if you only see me breifly and I don't just ramble stories off.

I am grateful to be home and grateful to know that I am going back. God is good. I think i will be posting periodically while I am home. Thank you so much for joining, supporting, loving, giving, praying, and encouraging me on this journey!!!!!

PS-- to my Austin stone group before I left-- i have been meaning to post this but always forgot. THANK YOU so so so much for the package you sent me! It was such a blessing at the exact right time. I am now back in Austin but don't have any phone numbers or emails to connect with any of you... so email me if you want.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Tula Bagana 2009

A closure. It is hard to believe that a year has passed since I was last on US soil. And even-more-so it is hard to absorb all the lessons that the Lord has taught me in this past year. Overall, I am so glad that this time I am not saying “goodbye” but merely “see you later”.

I cannot express enough to all of you reading this how grateful I am for your faithful prayers, support, and encouragement. As I get ready to go, please continue to pray for my heart’s adjustment back to the US for a while; pray safety and smooth traveling; pray for opportunities for me to boast in the Lord for what He is doing at LCH; and pray for the planning and preparation for my return. I will be arriving in Austin, with Jac, on Oct. 16 in the early evening. And my plans are to still blog a bit while I am home. Writing my thoughts out is great processing for me. I feel excited to see everyone back in the US, but as I told the church body this Sunday, “Although I am going home, I feel a bit funny because I am also leaving home.”

Today the kids and staff had a great send off party. The tables were decorated and we had popcorn, sodas, biscuits, and cake. I am getting used to the tradition of the guest of honor serving all the guests, so I was not surprised when I was asked to do that. But the most amusing part of the celebration was when Edward brought out a small gift and all the kids and staff started shouting their African call. It was awesome and made the gift opening so much more exciting. I got 2 beautiful soap stone plates that I had been admiring and Jac got a gomas (the traditional dress with big sleeves) made from the traditional Buganda cloth. I think we are both going to put on our gomas tomorrow and take pictures with the kids.

So, on Wednesday morning we will head off to Kampala. But this will be a special journey… Edward has chosen 2 boys and 2 girls to escort us to the airport. What a joy it will be to see their little faces light up as they quite possibly see the big city for the first time in their lives!! I can’t wait.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The count down begins

Maybe because today is the first day of Oct, which has seen so far away, but the mental thought has been ignited that my days here in Uganda are very numbered. I won't lie, it makes me a bit emotional thinking about leaving. I love these kids. With all my heart I really love these kids. And although I look forward to being home, I can't imagine life without seeing these kids everyday. In reality, they are what I know of my life right now and I love it that way. So to have some months at home without them is already lonely to my heart.

So, here are my prayer requests as this new season approaches closer and closer. (Oct. 16 I will arrive in Austin).

Please pray for my heart's transition back to the US. Also for the details of "visiting" home... such as a cell phone, a car to borrow, how to occupy my time. I am believing God that He will open doors to share the story of the kids to some big-time executive buisness person and that that will be the start of something new. I don't know exactly why that is in my head, but it has continued to be there. And pray for the Lord's provisions for funds again and the opportunities that I have to speak, that my boasts would be only in the Lord.

Lions and Tigers and Bears, oh my

Nakuru, Kenya Oct. 1, 2008

Me, Jac, and Glenn went on a really wonderful, long weekend trip to Nakuru, Kenya this past weekend. I had forgotten how much fun it is to travel with friends. Seeing as things are much cheaper to go public means, we decided that our best budget plan would be to ride a public bus the 5 hours into Kenya’s borders. Our journey began early Thursday morning, as we rode with the staff of LCH and then continued the 45 minutes to the border at Malaba town. Like in most situations here, we were told that the bus would arrive from Kampala to the border at 10am, but African time allowed for the arrival of the bus at noon. After loading on the bus, we were off, all 8 of us who filled the bus.

About an hour into our journey, there was an obvious jolting too and fro caused by the road. I have never seen such a thing, but somehow the big cargo trucks had made indentions in the asphalt, causing distinct tracks in the road. Then, about 3 hours into the journey we hit the worst road in all of Kenya, I am sure. How would I describe it? Maybe like being on the wooden roller coaster at Six Flags? It was not so much potholes as it was just like we were offroading on a stoney mountain trail… in a huge bus. We were bouncing up and down, doing everything we could to hold on and keep from biting our tongues as we laughed. But, at about 5 we safely arrived in Nakuru.

We stayed with Glenn’s uncle and Auntie, so from the bus station we were to meet them in town to go to their home. We called a taxi guy who ran to go get his “taxi” car. But after about 5 minutes of not returning we were beginning to wonder. Finally this old, small, sunshine yellow car rolled up next to us. In all honesty, we couldn’t help but laugh. The driver heard us and as we got inside, with a big grin on his face, he just kept repeating, “Old is Gold. Old is gold” Well, we didn’t get to test that theory because as soon as we had shut the doors another car rolls up, smaller and more rickety, and the drivers begin to bicker. Oops, we were not even in the right taxi of the first man that ran away. Ha. So ‘Old is gold” told us we should go with the other man so he would not quarrel more and we got into the right taxi.

The truth be told, this weekend I rode in the most unusual forms of transportation I can ever claim. After Old is gold, we met up with Glenn’s relatives, in which the Uncle is a Doctor and the Auntie the Nurse Matron of the hospital. So, after greeting them with a warm friendly welcome, they take our luggage and put it in an ambulance. The rest of the weekend, our transport to and from town to home was this old ambulance, fully equipped with sirens, curtains (for privacy) and even a bed bolted down. Needless to say, every time we got in we giggle a bit. Later that weekend we also rode around town in a Tuki tuki- which is like a 3 wheeled motor bike taxi with a little covered carriage for the passengers in the back.
The weekend was filled with lots of food, great conversations with the Dr. and Auntie, touring town, and the national park. Auntie was very funny and always urging us to eat 4 servings of food at each meal by saying, “ You are on holiday, it is time to enjoy. Add some more food.” Oh and did we eat!

We got to go shopping 2 times in downtown Nakuru. In the middle of town they have this little craft market. Seeing as Jac has not yet gotten to stock up on African artisans she was very excited to be shopping. AND they were very excited to have her there. Somehow one seller heard one of us say her name and within minutes, ever stand owner was shouting, “Jackie, Jackie. Look here. I have a special price for you!” This was very amusing, one- because literally every shop she went to there were at least 5 guys calling her name and two- because she strongly dislikes being called Jackie. Glenn and I just sat back for advice as to prices.

One of the highlights of the trip was Lake Nakuru National Park. I had been there once before, over Christmas holiday with the family, but it was still so enjoyable. We were in a little car and able to request the driver to stop to take pictures any time. He was so patient. There were even a few times when I would sit in the window of the car, on lion patrol, as Jac jumped out to get the “best national geographic angle” to capture animals like rhinos, wildebeest, flamingos, zebras, and giraffes. Oh, how creatively and beautifully God has made this world! Truly my heart sung out, “The splendor of the King!” At lunch we made our way to this fancy hotel in the middle of the park. We dropped off at the from breezeway and were greeted by a friendly man with a damp cool towel to wipe off our dusty faces and arms. As we proceeded up to the front counter we heard, “You are most welcome!” and handed a glass of passion fruit juice. Feeling a bit like royalty, the hosts then asked, “Are you staying with us tonight.” After our negative response, the bubble of royalty burst. Not really. They were still very welcoming and many people come just for lunch. We had a great lunch and relaxed a bit, then hit the bush again to be great explorers and animal tamers. Well, really the animals tamed us, especially when Jac realized how tricky the monkeys could be as one grabbed a banana from her and the other came to try to snatch her camera from her hands. Luckily he didn’t succeed.

All in all, it was a great trip with great friends. Who knows where the next destination will be?!?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

A need

I have a need...
I will be coming home on oct. 16 BUT I don't have a car to get me around anymore. So, I know that I serve a big God and that He knows all my needs. And, I know thatoften He meets needs when we make the needs known.

So, the need is a car. My thought is: Can I borrow yours? Ha. Well really it is, do you have an "extra" car that I can borrow from mid Oct to Feb- or anytime in between?
Mostly I would use it just to get around Austin, but might use it to take small tripsto New Braunfels, Houston, and Dallas, and Flatonia.

If you can help or know someone who might be able to help me in this need, then pleaseemail me at aggienat@hotmail.com. That would be a HUGE blessing because Austin is much bigger than Mbale so I can't exactly walk everywhere I need to go and there are no boda-boda bicycle men that can ride me around either. Ha. :)

Saturday, September 20, 2008


It is really hard to express in words... and even soak in... the miracle that has happened in our midst here at LCH.


She came home on Wednesday, having been cleared by the doctors that traveling from Kampala and her stability were ok. The intensity and seriousess of her situation are really more than most could understand, outside of her parents. In all honesty, she could have died at any point, but the Gracious Father kept and preserved her through seemingly impossible situations.

Yesterday all the staff and kids met together for a corperate time of thanksgiving to the Lord for the work He has and is continuing to do. There are many times in life that we don't know now or may never know why things happen. But, Edward stated yesterday that this is one of those times, but if this brought the begining of the staff and kids of Lulwanda to gather and pray together weekly, then He gives the Lord glory.

Please continue to pray for Nellie, as her head is still very swollen and a piece of her skull will not be replaced for about a year. Also pray for her parents, Edward and Harriet, that the Lord would strengthen and encourage them as they have to treat their 14yr old as a baby again and will have to learn and train her in behavioral changes that have occured as a result of this whole thing. BUT glory to God in the Highest. Our God is a miracle worker!!!!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

New Seasons in Uganda

Oh the Lord is good and in Him is the fullness of joy. I was reading today in my Beth Moore study that "when various spokespeople and lay people who are seeding God in very different places hear the same biblical principles as a fresh revelation, we are wise to perk up our ears." Well, I feel like the Lord is teaching and reavealing to me the same lesson in different words and perspectives over the past 2 months. I still am in a processing time, but I will share more when the full revelation (or at least I can combine my thoughts into understandable sentences). But I love that forever I will be a learner and I continue to pray for a teachable and moldable heart. So, NEW SEASON #1- God is leading me into something new through His word.

NEW SEASON #2- I have prayed for over a year now that the Lord would bring me a kindred spirit in the faith- preferably and American girl in the same season of life as me (hey, there is nothing wrong with praying specifics). Although the answer has looked very different (as far as only being breif time here in Uganda), I have been blessed to have His answer to this prayer through Haily and now Jacquline. It is so so sweet to have my best friend beside me and ministering and loving the precious kids that have completly captured and won my heart. She arrived on Sat, after a few delays. But the delays made for a great excuse for Glenn and I to find a nice restraunt by the beach of Lake Victoria (the 2nd largest freshwater lake in the world) and eat BIG fresh tilapia fish and chips. And when I say big I mean tail all the way to the fish lips. Ha. So, Jac is here now, safe and sound, and it has been so fun already to get to catch up and laugh and love the kids. I can't wait to see what else God has in store. If you are interested in a different perspective, she is a much better story teller than I am, so you can check out her blog at www.aupairjacquline.blogspot.com. She has already posted her perspective of being here.

NEW SEASON #3- When you arrive at LCH you once again see little kids lined up in the morning, singing the Uganda national anthem, and wearing their green bottoms and khaki tops with long white socks. What does this mean? Term 3 has started officially and so we are back into a season of learning. The kids are very excited to be back and the competition to be the brightest in class is on, seeing as Edward has been giving rewards to the 3 best students in each class after the term has ended. This past Sat., the top students went to Jinja, saw the source of the Nile, road on a boat, and eat lots of food. The kids love it and it is very motivating to work hard during the school year.

Well, I have not yet adjusted back to the necessity of going to bed early to get up at 6 to be ready for school. So I need to sleep now but wanted to give you some updates on what is happening. More is to come later, so sit tight.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Faces of Lulwanda

There are really not words for me to express how much I love these kids. This is the place the Lord has been calling me to and preparing me for for the past 10 years. Praise the Father that everyday is a new day of blessings and excitement and love and abundance if we choose to walk in HIS ways!

We are still on holidays from school and this is truly a fun time for me because I have more free time to simply play with the kids. It is hard to describe a typical day here, but here is a brief tour of what might be going on any given day at the home.

TOUR of LCH during the HOLIDAYS

As in any home, housework must be done. So you can imagine with 90 kids there is that much more to be done but also that many more little hands to help.

Whether coming from the garden with a fresh harvest for the days meal...

Or sorting maize so it can dry in the bright equatorial sun.

But of course there is time for being silly. As I was with the kids I hear them saying, "Look Auntie, Moses is a mussei (meaning old man)."

The kids are on a rotation everyday, by grade level as to what activity they will be doing after breakfast. Some color, some mold play dough, some do home activities, and some build with legos--- which the kids have gotten pretty good at.

And just like in every home, there are life lessons that are being taught. Specifically this day some of the P5 girls were learning to make bread.

There is also time for crocheting scarves, bags, and table doilies. SO, please start collecting your crochet needles and yarn that goes on sale at Hobby Lobby because these girls are getting good and there is a great interest, only a lack of supplies.

And since boys don't crochet, what do they do? Well, they love to get their hands dirty and often are helping with the animals. On my tour yesterday (given by 8 of the boys), they showed me where a turkey had laid 3 eggs, fed the cows matoke, found where a kitten was hiding on the other side of the fence, and then they showed me their favorite goat and proceeded to tell me a story of how one of them once sat on a goat and road it like a donkey. Ha. Kids have the funniest stories.

But the kids ALSO love to read, which is great for me, seeing as I am here to help them do that. So about everyday I have a group of kids that practice their reading to me. SO�please save up your children�s and chapter books because the Lord is in the working of bringing us a library here and you can help to donate to it. Just ask me how.

AND of course not a day passes without some sort of singing and dancing. I love how music is the heartbeat of Africa. This particular dance is the "Buganda" traditional dance, where you tie a scarf like thing around your butt and shake your hips like they might fall off. All while moving one step at a time and still shaking.

Overall these kids bring great joy to my heart. How could you not adore faces like these?!?!