I am safely at the hotel in Jinja, Uganda! It feels so good to be here in my Ugandan home ! I found myself saying, “Thank you God, Thank you God,” on the drive from Entebbe to Jinja. When Godfrey picked me up he said, “When you wrote me and told me the passport was received, we were rejoicing! We were so happy!” He said, “This truly is a miracle!”
There was a new step in the arrival process at the Entebbe Airport. Not only do you have to fill out an arrivals card, but you must also fill out a detailed questionnaire from the Ministry of Healthcare. Before going through passport control, you must see one of the heathcare workers, who takes the questionnaire and your temperature! Yes, they are screening specifically for ebola. It is all very thorough in an attempt to keep the illness out of Uganda. Godfrey said there were no issues of ebola in this area. And the preventative measures they are taking at the airport will hopefully put your minds to rest as well!
My luggage was almost the last out this time. I was just thankful it arrived with all items intact! Whenever there is a transfer of planes, there is always a possibility of bags not arriving with you! One time my bags ended up in Hawaii while I was in Uganda!
We made our traditional stop for chicken on a stick and roasted bananas! It is always the official welcome to Uganda when we take our first bite into the delicious chicken!
In the last 17 trips, I have stayed in the same room all but 2 of those times. So when I walk up to my room...it really feels like I am home! They save the same room for me and have even called it “My House!”
Bags unpacked and a night of rest I am anticipating with great excitement all that God is going to do today. In the early morning hours as it is still dark outside and all is quiet, I wait on the gift this day will bring. I believe today God is going to amaze me with all he has in store. Since the launch of “The Ugandan Dream” on November 9th, I have been in awe & continually amazed at the miraculous.
On Monday, January 12th (side note...Kiana’s 21st birthday!!! Yay!), I was invited to speak at Krista Bjur’s 1st grade classes. Krista is the mom of Kiana’s boyfriend, Taylor. I was totally blown away at how excited, interested and just plain cute these 85 children from 3 separate classes were. Most of what they knew about Africa had to do with animals which is expected! But as I showed them pictures of the children of Raining Hope, they watched with wide eyes and open hearts. They asked many questions about the children, what they ate, how they dressed, what they did for fun etc. The questions were never ending!
I then talked to them about having dreams. I asked these precious children what they wanted to be when they grew up. The answers were doctors, nurses, teachers, and one even said he wanted to grow up to be Batman! That was my favorite! At one point just about every hand was raised wanting to tell me their dream too. So I said at the count of three I wanted everyone to yell out what they wanted to become. It was a beautiful sound to hear all 85 children at once tell me their dream! I then told them our children at Raining Hope have dreams too. They too want to become doctors, nurses and teachers. We are trying to help their dreams come true. One child’s response...”They are just like us. Their dreams are just like ours.”
The voices of children. We all have dreams. I heard a sermon series by Pastor Amos Dodge at Capital Church in Virginia when visiting Carol John. One of his sermons on dreams he said, “What if your dream is that you are being used to help someone else’s dreams become a reality?” God is using all of you to help us help the dreams of the children at Raining Hope become a reality. As I wait for this morning and the day that God has planned for me...I can’t help but believe that I am stepping into a grand celebration of dreams coming true. The sun is now rising. Hope is rising. Dreams are waiting for us all. I can’t wait to send the next report on all that God does today!
You are all here with me. I did not do this alone. Though your prayers, your support, your giving, everyone has made this trip and this dream become a reality. I am just blessed to be here this week to deliver your well wishes and your love to these precious children. It is one reason why the updates are so long. I want you to experience just as much by being right here with me through words that hopefully become alive in your heart. So thank you for allowing me this awesome privilege of being an ambassador of the children’s dreams!
As I was writing this update, I heard this song on my IPod called, “Giants Fall,” by Francesca Battistelli. It comes off the CD “If We’re Honest.” Many of the songs on this CD are encouragement to me. If you go to YouTube you can also find the official audio version. But here are the words...”miracles could happen, anything is possible, watch the giants fall!”
Watching miracles & dreams coming true,
mama eydie kisakye
Everyone's telling you
To let go of what you're holding to
It's too late, too far
You're too small, it's too hard
Throwing water on that spark
Living deep inside your heart
With oceans of reasons
The things you're not seeing
But oh, maybe they don't
Know what you know
That you're not alone
Don't you be afraid
Of giants in your way
With God you know that anything's possible
So step into the fight
He's right there by your side
The stones inside your hand might be too small
But watch the giants fall
We could really live like this
Can't you imagine it
So bold, so brave
With childlike faith
Miracles could happen
Mountains would start moving
So whatever you may face
Ask and believe
You're gonna see
The hand of God in every little thing
Miracles can happen
Anything is possible
Watch the giants fall