-Triplet girls who are not quite a year old and their 4 year old brother came to live here at Good Shepherd's Fold last week. They are precious and are keeping the house moms very busy.
-We bought plane tickets for furlough. We plan to arrive in Atlanta late on April 20. We will need to travel to Global Outreach home office in Mississippi soon after arriving, but plan to be in the Athens, GA area for the month of May and again for then end of June and early July, visiting family in Florida in between. We are looking forward to seeing many of you then!
-On Saturday I sat and talked with my friends in the village for quite a while. I am learning to communicate more and enjoy sitting and visiting. Normally the women sit on a mat on the ground and they bring a stool for the visitors. But for the first time they let me sit down on the ground with them. I felt like I was finally being treated like a friend, not just a guest.
-As I visited with another family, I realized that one woman was in severe pain. Her tooth was causing so much pain that tears were running down her face. Elijah came with me, and I drove her to the clinic/hospital nearby that usually has a dentist. Since it was Saturday, she was not there. The guard at the clinic knows me now, so he directed me to the dentist's house just down the road. She agreed to see my friend, Juliette, and directed us to enter the front of her house. There was a room with a dental chair and all her equipment in a tool box. Juliette had a bad cavity and infection in one tooth that needed to be extracted. The dentist gave her some shots of novicane, waited until it was working and then pulled the tooth. Afterwards she gave Juliette antibiotics and pain medicine. The total cost for the procedure and meds was less than $4. And all done in an enclosed porch at the home of the dentist. I had been concerned that the tooth might be pulled without concern for the pain, but I was thankful that was not the case, particularly since Elijah was with me. He did look down and cover his ears just in case. I was able to sit and hold Juliette's hand and pray for her while her tooth was being extracted. The next morning she met us at church. It was the first time I had seen her there. I don't know her heart, but I am praying that if she does not yet know Jesus, she will come to know him. Her mother is my friend Jessica who recently came to faith in Jesus and was baptized. Please pray for Juliette's physical healing and God's work in her heart and life.
-Also on Sunday a young man came to our church and told the pastor that he wanted to pray to receive Jesus as his Saviour! He prayed with the pastor in front of the church. Then we all prayed for him. Pastor Jonathan reminded us all that there is celebration in heaven over one sinner who repents. (Luke 15:7) After that, we celebrated communion together. It was a beautiful celebration!
-On the first Sunday night of each month we have GSF family church. This is a time for all the GSF kids, housemoms, and missionary families to be together for worship, prayer, teaching and announcements. It is also the time that we officially welcome any new children to GSF. We welcomed the triplets and their brother along with a little girl named Sarah with CP. She is a sweet little girl who smiles beautifully. After introducing these new children and praying for them we all sang to them. These are the words we sing:
"Welcome to the family; we're glad that you have come to share your life with us, as we grow in love. And may we always be to you what God would have us be, a family always there, to be strong and to lean on."
Every time we sing this to a new child I get choked up, thinking of how these kids all come from such broken situations, but we are asking God to help us be family to them and to show them the love of Jesus.
-On Monday I met with some women and teenage girls in the village about using one of their skills to make something that I could buy. I would love to support our neighbors in this way. Hopefully they can have another way to earn money working from home and using their skills. If the project turns out well, many of you will see the results when we are in the states.
-Later Monday afternoon, as I was walking in Buundo I met a young man named Franco who has been working on building our house. I had seen him at church on Sunday, so I told him that it was good to see him there. He told me that he was now a Christian. Daniel Iya has been meeting with the guys who work on the house and sharing the gospel. He also gave all the workers Bibles at Christmas. From what I could understand, this young man attended an overnight prayer service on New Year's Eve and asked Jesus Christ to be his Saviour. We have been praying that God would use the building of our house to bring these men to know Jesus, or to grow in him through this process. We are so happy about this answer to prayer. Please pray with us for this young man as he grows in his relationship with Jesus.
-We have recently been without electricity and without water at various times. I am remembering to be thankful for these luxuries when they are available.
-We have an extra student for a month. She is from China and her family is here in Uganda for the month of February. It is a great opportunity to encourage her in the gospel before she returns to China.
Life here is very full. I am thankful for the opportunities God brings into our lives each day. Please pray for us to have energy and wisdom as we follow Him.