Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Raining Hope Service Project - Chapter 17 - Update #5 - July 23, 2014

Sorry for the delay in sending you an update.  Once the conferences began on Friday, there was not a lot of time for me to post.   Pictures are also coming!  You can check out my Facebook (Eydie M Miskel) as some of my teammates are posting their photos! 

There are no words that can adequately describe what has happened in the last 4 days.  Even as I write this, I can’t believe that I am trying to catch up on only 4 days.  With the amount of ministry that we have been privileged to be a part of, it seems like so much longer!  This update will be long but you will see why we are so busy! 

The Open Air Evangelism went very well.  For three nights we meet in the middle of the village of Kakira.  When we arrived on the first night, they had already started the worship.  The worship team from Cornerstone Church were on this small platform praising the Lord in song.  The platform was made of timber and look sturdy...until the choir started really praising Jesus in song and dance.  The whole platform moved as they moved!  I had visions of the whole thing collapsing!  But it was much stronger than it looked.  Pastor Paul said, “It has been tested and it can’t fall!”  The makeshift ladder that we all had to climb to get on top of the platform was another challenge!  But that too was easier than it looked!  

I was asked to sign music for each night, before the message and during the invitation.  Doug brought the message each evening.  The team was introduced on the first night and each shared a greeting as they were introduced.  Kelly, Shannon & Katie each took a turn on one of the evenings to share their personal testimonies.  You would be so proud of all of them!  If we would have had one more night, Desiree would have also shared!   But standing on a platform in the middle of a village is truly a challenge.  You have some that are paying attention to the Word that is being proclaimed.  Then you have others many others that glance but continue on their way.  There were many children who came and crowded in front of the platform.  Even though many of the young children may not have known English, their smiles they gave went way beyond any language barriers!  And we must not forget the chickens and the cows that are passing continually around us!  

Each evening there were people who came forward and prayed to received Jesus as their Savior!  One of the most touching moments came on the last evening.  Pastor Gerald was praying with one of the individuals that came forward.  He later shared that the man did not speak English or Luganda.  Yet, the Lord opened up the communication barrier for him to understand that he needed Jesus.  Pastor Gerald speaks Swahili which ended up being the language that this man spoke.  So Pastor Gerald was able to pray with him to accept Jesus as his Savior!  We stood in amazement!  

Sunday Worship at Cornerstone Church
We loved worshipping at Cornerstone on Sunday morning!  There were two services beginning at 7 am and concluding at 1 pm.  We did not have to arrive until 9 am. Pastor Doug brought the message in both services.  The team brought greetings.  I signed a song for each one of the services.  The team loves the way the Ugandans worship and praise the Lord!  

Raining Hope Children’s Choir Gala 
After the church service on Sunday, we stopped at the hotel long enough to pick up a snack and then head to Bukaya.  This is the village where our Raining Hope home is at.  Annet from our home had put together a Music Gala that was all focused on Raining Hope!  One of the local churches hosted the event.  Because we had to return to Kakira for the last evening of the evangelism conference, we only had a couple of hours to stay.  Knowing that we had a commitment to get to, they adjusted for us by having the children perform all of their songs early.  All I can say is, “WOW!”  They were SO AMAZING!  They sang all of their songs that are on our new CD.  Seeing them sing and dance, my heart was overflowing with pride as a parent.  We were blown away.  Then Annet joined the children and sang a couple of her songs that she has recorded.  She is the one that has written all of the songs on the CD and choreographs the dance.  We are extremely blessed to have her with us.  

The whole event started with a downpour of rain!  We had to run from the van to the church because it was coming down in buckets!  I LOVED IT!  I even came back outside to just get poured all over!  

Pastor’s & Women’s Conference
Both days of the Pastor’s and Women’s conference went very well.  The plan had been for the women to be up on the top floor of the church.  The men were going to be down in the bottom part of the church.  But that morning as well, it poured rain!  So the bottom area became flooded.  So we divided up the top floor area.  Amazingly it worked!  
I was so blessed by the response of the women who were in attendance.  They truly have a desire to learn.  The team was incredible!  I asked them to dramatize the scripture so the women could see it come alive.  One scripture we used was Genesis 26:12-25 about Isaac and the conflict over water rights.  The team was awesome in portraying Isaac and the servants who were digging wells.  I know we captured it on video!  We also talked about how Abraham’s faith was tested in Genesis 22 by asking him to sacrifice his son Isaac.  Now that drama was worth you all seeing!  The “foam knife” that Kelly had made looked so real.  I think that the children that were watching through the windows from outside must have been wondering, “what in the world is that muzungu doing?”  Ha ha!  Kelly even provided the ram in the thicket!  She had a little lamb stuffed animal that miraculously came forth at the right time!  I have a brilliant team! 

We also focus on the fact the we have one purpose and that is to be pleasing to God.  The ladies were all responding that that truth.  The focus of the second day was 2 Corinthians 5:9 “So whether we are here in this body or away from this body our goal is to please him.”   I had our team each share one of the devotions from our 40 Days with Jesus that meant the most so far to them.  There were tears & joy shared in this time.  I have been so proud of my team.  They have been stretched with how much they have had to speak in front of groups.  I am watching all of them confidently share the more they are being put on the spot.  As a “mom” I couldn’t be prouder of them.   

We also focused on one of my stronger areas...that of encouragement.  I am known for slipping notes under the door of the team members each day of the journey.  My involvement this past year with CBU and the ISP program, has been that of encourager.    So I focused on that with the women and how they can be encouragers of those around them.  I quickly found out at the end of the 2nd day, they are not used to doing that kind of encouragement.  So it blessed my heart when I watched them catch on and love writing notes to others before we left!  They even came up to get more cards so they could write more!  

We were blessed by an organization here based in Kampala that provided us with some tools for pastors.  A friend at CBU gave me the information and we were able to bless the pastors with this material!  

Devotion time with the Staff of Paradise 
Three days a week, the staff at our hotel begin the day with a time of prayer and devotion.  This is one of my favorite things to do when I am at Paradise Hotel.  This hotel honors the Lord in their business.  It is a blessing to be able to be a part of this time in the morning.  We had Pastor Doug bring the devotion that morning.  The staff were all very touched by the message.  Pray for the team as we will lead the devotions today(Wednesday) and on Friday.  

One of the moments that blessed me came after the devotion on Friday.  One of the workers that is fairly new came up to me and said, “I have been watching you and I like the way you follow God.  How do I do that?”  This woman touched my heart.  I met with her later and she is a born again believer.  But she doesn’t have a lot of people around her who can help her in her grow in her faith.  Her roommate is not a believer.  She just needed direction & encouragement.  I had an extra copy of “Jesus Calling” so I gave it to her.  After we prayed, she held the book to her heart and said, “I am going to take care of this & treasure it.”  She challenged me and touched my heart when she in turned prayed for me.  She is a very strong believer, just wanting someone to walk alongside her.  

So as you can see, we have been very busy.  We come home at night so exhausted that we are falling into bed!  But we finish off each day with the children of Raining Hope.  We get a second wind by time we get to the house!  They are filled with so much joy that it is so contagious.  The team is working on their updates so you can hear from them about Raining Hope.  Each day just gets better and better!  Just when you think it is not possible, the kids just blow them away with their love and devotion to the Lord! 

In between all of the ministry, we have had moments of rest and recharging.  Next update I will talk about our shopping adventures as well as our boat ride to the Raining Hope land! 

Oh...and this team has been one that can’t stop laughing!  The joy of the Lord is our strength!!! 

More tomorrow! 
mama eydie kisakye ! 

  1. Pray for Pastor Gerald.  He had been ill and there was a concern it had something to do with his kidneys.  We sent him to the doctor and they could not find anything wrong after performing some scans.  He is now on pain meds.  We pray that it would bring relief to the pain. 
  2. Pray for Pastor Godfrey.  He has been working so hard as our interpreter.  He had a huge job in interpreting for Pastor Doug.  He has come down with a cold so keep him in your prayers.  His wife, Irene is also very sick.  He left us yesterday to go back home (about 30 minutes) to take care of her.   We will update you on her condition.  
  3. My team has been incredibly healthy!  Praise the Lord!   No stomach issues or any other illnesses.  But some of the team is starting to get the scratchy throats, including me.   Pray for continued good health as we finish strong this week.  
  4. The girls begin teacher training and Vacation Bible School today.  Pray for them as they lead! 

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