To finish up the updates of this journey, it is appropriate to do this after having just celebrated Mother’s Day! I want to give you a little background on where “Mama Eydie” has come from. Some of you that are new to our updates may not know the story. This trip has been about family & my love as a mom for her children. First and foremost, on January 12, 1994, God gave me the privilege of being called “mom” for the first time when Kiana was born! For me, there is no greater honor than to be Kiana’s mom!
Then when Heather Elkin’s parents moved back to Oklahoma, she stayed back to finish college at Cal State Northridge. We began to have Heather over for meals knowing it was hard for her to be here alone. Quickly, we all became her extended family. I had mentored Heather as a young teenager. But now my role began to shift to a second spiritual mom and Kiana became a sister to her.
Then in 2007, my family began to expand! I became involved with children in Uganda in a little place called Jinja! This is where God introduced me to a group of children in the village of Kakira at Cornerstone Church. Some of these would become a part of our first home called, Living Hope Children’s Home. This is where God was birthing a whole new family into my life!
As I was beginning to write this, I went back and found an article I wrote for Pastor Rex for Conejo Church on Mother’s Day 2010. It was titled, “A Mom Committed to the Great Commission.” He asked me to write it while I was in Uganda on my second International Service Project with California Baptist University. The year before was my first ISP trip and also the first Mother’s Day that I was not with Kiana. My team knew that it was a struggle for me to be away from Kiana and Heather on such an important day. So they did something very special. They were the team that gave me the title, “Mama Eydie.” They became my spiritual daughters. They surprised me on Mother’s Day with beautiful cards filled with words of encouragement. Over the five years I led ISP teams overseas, I became “Mama Eydie” to over 40 students. Add to that number about 14 others with Raining Hope that have been trained to travel overseas! I would say that my territories have definitely expanded!
Then in 2012, my ISP team witnessed my family in Uganda giving me my African name, Kisakye, meaning “Grace of God” or “God’s Grace.” They have been calling me “Aunty Eydie Kisakye” since that time. But something very beautiful happened in January of 2015. That trip began a huge shift in our family. You can go back to our blog at www.raininghopeuganda.blogspot.com if you want to reread any of those updates. It was a much needed trip for me to travel alone as a mom to be with my extended Uganda family. Something happened when I missed my flight and was there for those 2 additional days. My role as their mum took on a new meaning. The reality of having a house they could call their own was giving them new hope. They began telling me stories of just how hopeless their lives were before they came to “Living Hope Children’s Home.” But they always held onto the promise God gave them in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
Now for the first time in their lives, they believe that they will become the teachers, doctors, lawyers, etc. that they have always desired. You have given them this renewed sense of hope with your support and your love. R.C. Sproul states, “Hope is not taking a deep breath and hoping things are going to turn out all right. It is assurance that God is going to do what he says he will do.”
OUR CHILDREN AT RAINING HOPE KNEW FROM THE BEGINNING THAT GOD WAS GOING TO DO WHAT HE SAID HE WOULD DO!
We talked about the long road we have taken to get to where we STAND today. Where people have told me it is impossible to do what I am doing, God says, “Nothing is impossible with Me.” Luke 1:37.
Where people have told our kids to give up because it is impossible for them to fulfill the dreams they have in their life, Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.” Luke 18:27.
When they were weak, God said, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9
They have gone from children who lost hope to a living testimony of Romans 15:13 NIV, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
The theme of this trip became clear. LOVE. This was the overwhelming message that the Lord wanted the children to hear...wanted me to hear...wanted you to hear.
Raining Hope is rooted in love.
Jeremiah 29:11 and Joshua 1:9 are His promises to us. This trip I watched these additional verses become knitted into the fabric of our masterpiece...
“What does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all HIs ways and to love Him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul?” Deuteronomy 10:12
“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?” Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Matthew 22:36-39
Because we now have our own house, I bought a “visitors book” that is a very common thing to have in Uganda. When you visit a home or a ministry, Ugandans like to have a record that you have come. Godfrey chuckled when I picked out the guest book! He was overjoyed because it signified that we own our own home! This is what I have written at the front of the book...
Welcome to Raining Hope Uganda!
We are a home that is rooted in LOVE! We pray that as you enter today you will experience His love, His joy and His peace through the warm welcome and hugs of our children and staff.
Thank you for blessing us with your presence today! The love of the Heavenly Father awaits!
Peace and grace,
Mama Eydie Kisakye, Godfrey & the Raining Hope Uganda
Can you feel it? It is as if you have stepped through our doors by reading these updates. With each prayer, with each gift, with each word of encouragement, you step into the home of Raining Hope.
We went from living in a house to becoming a home.
We went from being an organization to becoming a family.
I went from being Aunty to becoming their Mum.
We are a family at Raining Hope. We are committed to helping our children’s dreams come true. The children want to be that change in the world & bring all glory to Him.
The theme verse for my Raining Hope Service Project team in 2014 was 2 Corinthians 5:9, “So whether we are here in this body or away from this body, our goal is to please him.” Even though it started off as a verse for the team, it became a theme for our children as well! They are making their lives all about Him, not about themselves as they live as disciples involved in the advancement of Kingdom work.
What does it mean to be a mother on mission? It simply means being a follower of Jesus Christ wherever He sends me, whether it is Ventura, Riverside, Duarte or Uganda!
Thank you for being on mission with me on this significant journey in the life of Raining Hope. Thank you for helping their dreams come true.
Kiana gave me a pillow for Mother’s Day that says, “To the world you are a mom, but to us you are the world.” What a privilege it is to carry the title of “mom” no matter where I am!
“As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord,” Joshua 24:15
Thank you for being a part of our family!
mama eydie kisakye