Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Another update on Sebastian

I wasn't going to update about sweet little Sebas (that's what the Ugandans call Sebastian) until later on. But, plans changed (isn't that surprising?!) and I wanted to tell you about the change of plans. When Nurse Katie went to pick him up she found out that the surgery had been done ... well, half of it. She was told that he bled and it was bigger then they had expected so they only did half. He will have to go back to get the other half done on October 25. Well, that is all for now I just wanted to do a short blog so you would know what is up with Seb.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Mercy and her Maker

Mercy when she first came to GSF

Mercy is two years old. She has only lived at GSF for around two months. Since she came, she never really smiled. Over the last week she has been giving 'almost smiles'. On Sunday, as I was standing on the stage singing 'He knows my name' with the choir I was watching the people in the audience as usual. I saw Catherine whispering in Mercy's ear and it became obvious that she was whispering the words to the song. I continued to watch them and then, I saw Mercy smile. And it was very obvious. It was beautiful. I don't know if she was smiling about the words of the song or if something else made her smile. But, I like to think that the words to the song comforted her.
I have a Maker
He formed my heart
Before even time began
My life was in his handsMercy with her Auntie now.
Eseza, one of the girls in her Mercy's house, helping her sit up.

Mercy now has so many people who love her and care for her. We hope that some day she will be a happy little girl who can talk, and walk. With all the love and help she has, she surely could. It is so obvious that Mercy's life was in God's hands even though we have just found out that she cannot see. The other day she got hurt and about 10 little girls were crowded around her, so concerned for her.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Sebbie ... this is not the end

Bonga (fist pound) Sebastian, bonga!

Many of you have heard about little Sebastian. You have seen his picture and prayed for him by name. We have sent out Facebook Status, Newsletter updates and numerous Blog posts asking you to pray for Sebastian. So, you have probably heard his story. If you haven't, he is 18 months old and has a Bilateral - Cleft Pallet.
After the third time of going to get his surgery done he went again on Wednesday. He had it done and he is coming home today!
Please don't stop praying for Sebastian. This is not the end. A Speech Therapist came out to visit GSF. She said that depending on how good his surgery is he may never talk. It might be too late. This was heartbreaking to me to think of sweet little Sebastian never being able to talk. He will be running around and playing (he is already beginning to walk) but he might not be able to use words to communicate. He makes noises right now so I am hopeful. Please continue to pray with us for little Sebastian. Pray that God's will would be done in Seb's life. We would like to hold onto these verses and believe that God will give him speech...
"Can you understand the secrets of God? His limits are higher than the heavens; you cannot reach them! They are deeper than the grave; you cannot understand them! His limits are longer than the earth and wider than the sea." - Job 11:7-9
But if not ...
You must give your whole heart to him and hold out your hands to Him for help. - Job 11:13

Monday, September 19, 2011

A part of my heart

This week I have said goodbye to seven people ... well ... more then seven (there was a team here)... but, seven of them took a part of my heart with them.
Auntie Claudia has lived in Uganda for 13 years, seriously. On Sunday, she left to go on a three month furlough. And she not only took her three adopted girls with her but she also took two other little girls who live in her house with her. The girls she has adopted are Maggie(12), Hope(just turned 12), and Emma (10). The other two are Anna (5) and Amelia (2). So, while you are reading this she will be heading from London to the USA. She already texted us and said that she was in London, eating Krispy Kream.Anyways, over the last three years I have grown really close to these girls. So, it was really hard to say good-bye to them. It didn't seem real. I know that they will only be gone for 3 months but that is a long time. You can be praying for Auntie Claudia and her girls that they will be able to relax. Please be especially praying for Emma right now as she is sick with some kind of stomach bug.
Emma, Auntie Claudia, Hope, and Maggie

Well, the person I really wanted to focus on was Godfrey. A happy 4-year-old boy who was just adopted. He is super energetic and he loves to run around and play. Well, when we came to Uganda Godfrey had just gotten to GSF and I remember helping him learn how to walk. With most of the other adopted kids, it hasn't been hard to get used to them being gone (with an exception of Grace and Martha and maybe a few others). They go, you think you see them a few times, you remember they are gone, and soon it is just life. They have families and it is all wonderful. Not saying that it is wonderful that Godfrey has a family because it is wonderful, beyond wonderful ... bitter-sweet. It will just be so hard to get used to. To walk in the Toddlers' house and not have him come running up to me with that big smile of his saying 'Calonina!' Boy, am I going to miss that, but I am sure that I will get used to it soon. Anyways, I wanted to share several picture of him with you.

He had just gotten a new blanket.

With his Grandfather
I took this picture a few weeks ago.

Other prayer requests:
  1. A new case of some kids who might need to come to GSF has come up (I'll tell you more later), so please pray for wisdom for the missionaries and Social Worker.
  2. Please continue to pray for a little girl who needs to come to GSF - the man who was supposed to bring her has been busy and our Social Worker has been very busy too. Pray that she will come in God's timing.
  3. Sebbie goes for surgery on Thursday, pray that it will happen.
Thank you for all your prayers!

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Family. Ah, the meanings ... and the memories. Everyone's view of a family is slightly different. Some see sadness, a family they don't remember. Some see hard times, anger, a family who was always fighting. Some see happiness, laughter, and joy. Some see big families, others see small ones. But, it doesn't matter if you're family is big or small; poor or rich; happy, sad, or angry; the definition stays the same, and this is it:
1. a. A fundamental social group in society typically consisting of one or two parents and their children.
Two or more people who share goals and values, have long-term commitments to one another, and reside usually in the same dwelling place.
2. All the members of a household under one roof.
A group of persons sharing common ancestry.
Lineage, especially distinguished lineage.
When I think family I think of this:
Of the silly things we have done together like putting this together.

And of this. It may not look like my family to you, it may look too big, or maybe you think the people in it are from too many different places (there are people from different countries - all on different continents at that - in this picture). But they are my family. I feel like they are my family, and when I'm gone for a long time I miss them like my family (most of the time).

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

So Cute

This is Joseph. When I told him, 'Joseph you are so cute.'
He said 'Co cute'
Solomon and Jarrod

Solomon, Esther, and Sebastian

Esther and Jarrod

Esther and Micah


Kasifa and Sebbie (Sebastian)

Zaitune (Zai or Tuna) stood up all by herself on Wednesday!

This is her with her brother Edi.


Auntie Amanda. Favour (the baby) and Matthew

Matthew sitting up all by himself! He has CP; so this is a big improvement!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A dear friend

Today was a sad day, a day that we said good-bye to someone very special. To someone who touched the lives of many, someone who will be remembered by many for the rest of their lives. To Nurse Sarah. Nurse Sarah was with us for almost a year. Nurse Sarah treated many kids in her time here. She helped get kids who had been struggling, back on the right path (but, of course with the help of Nurse Meredith and the Ugandan nurse, Nurse Milly). She showed many kids the love of Jesus. Some of the things that the teenagers enjoyed about her were:
  1. She always greeted everyone
  2. She took them to the dentist and to get tetanus shots for which they were SOO grateful (haha).
  3. She was so excited to see them when they came home from school
  4. And the list goes on!
One of the things that she and the rest of us are grateful for is that we have a new nurse so we and nurse Milly are not alone. Her name is nurse Katie and after just a month she seems to be doing great. In the picture above Nurse Katie is on the left and Nurse Sarah is on the right. Nurse Sarah we love you and will miss you so much!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Marvelous Light

Into marvelous light I'm running
Out of darkness, out of shame
By the cross You are the truth

You are the life, You are the way
This song has been on my mind a lot lately. I just wanted to share some of my thoughts on this song.
I once was fatherless
A stranger with no hope

Your kindness wakened me

Awakened me, from my sleep
This is my favorite verse in the song. Many of the people around me are fatherless, they had no hope but God's kindness and the kindness of many others has 'wakened' them and brought them to where they are now. I have seen many little ones come through some of the hardest situations even some that have overcome death.

Your love it beckons deeply
A call to come and die

This verse of the song is a bit shocking, as you read the words to the rest of the song you will find God rescuing us from death, but here, he is calling us to come and die. It reminds me that I can't come and 'die' (dying to self) without his grace but, with grace I can.

By grace now I will come
And take this life, take Your life

Usually once I take God's life, I find great joy in Him, and through Him.

Sin has lost it's power
Death has lost it's sting
From the grave You've risen - victoriously

As I read the verse above and below many thoughts come into my head.
Norah, Emmanuel (Emma), and Gloria, all died within the last year. All three of them were weak, they were weary, and they needed a resting place, somewhere where they would never again be tired or sick or mistreated. Somewhere where they would never again need canes or wheelchairs, where they could run. They found it and now they are there, they are not tired, or weak, or sick. They are smiling, laughing, dancing, and running. And we can rest in the assurance that someday we will see them again.
Into marvelous light I'm running
Out of darkness, out of shame
By the cross You are the truth
You are the life,
You are the way

My dead heart now is beating

My deepest stains now clean

Your breath fills up my lungs
Now I'm free, Now I'm free
Sin has lost it's power
Death has lost it's sting

From the grave You've risen


Sebastian was 18 months old when he came to GSF. You can read the beginning of his story here on my mom's blog. Just to give you a little background he has a bilateral cleft pallet. He went in to Kampala (two hours away) last Monday they told the nurse that there were no beds in the hospital seeing as it is the biggest hospital in all of Uganda. So he came home and it was on to Plan B, a different hospital, one that was smaller, one that GSF knows and trusts, one that wouldn't fill up as fast. Even though it was further away, the missionaries and nurses felt that it was the right thing to do. So, on Friday, he went to the other hospital, and got the same answer, there were no spare beds. But ... unlike the first hospital this one gave them a date, 'come back on the 22nd'. So, he still doesn't have the surgery done. Please be praying with us that it will be done when they go back on the 22nd.

Into marvelous light I'm running
Out of darkness, out of shame

By the cross You are the truth

You are the life, You are the way

Into marvelous light I'm running Out of darkness, out of shame By the cross You are the truth You are the life, You are the way

Lift my hands and spin around See the light that I have found Oh the marvelous light Marvelous light

Lift my hands and spin around
See the light that I have found

Oh the marvelous light
Marvelous light

Sin has lost it's power

And death has lost it's sting

From the grave You've risen

On Wednesday evening my mom told me and some other people that there would be a new little girl coming the next day. Well guess what? It's Tuesday and still no new little girl. The man who was going to bring her was in a conference last week, so he couldn't bring her. It just makes my heart hurt for this little girl who is waiting for the schedules of other people to match up so that she can have a home ... and a family.

Into marvelous light I'm running
Out of darkness, out of shame
By the cross You are the truth
You are the life, You are the way