Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Chapter 22 - Update #3 - September 4, 2016

The days have been so full, I am waking up not realizing I had gone to sleep!
I have regularly returned to my room between 11 pm and midnight. After settling in from very full days, I pull out my computer with every intention of writing an update. I make the mistake of trying to write from the comfort of the bed with my head propped up against the pillow!
Then trying to log onto the internet with the slow connection creates more of a challenge! The internet & I relate to one another so well ... we both are functioning slower at the end of the day! I close my eyes imagining all that God has done for us throughout the day while waiting for the internet to connect. It is so unexplainable that while my eyes are closed, I must be transitioning into a dream state and suddenly I am in my own movie! When I come to the end of those events, suddenly it is morning! I wake up wanting more. Turns out this is the only thing that is allowing me to actually get a little sleep at night! The good news is the credits are not yet rolling! There is much more to the story!

Even though it seems like ages ago that I left for Uganda, I have more to the story of how God miraculously provided BEFORE I left American soil.

In addition to the generous gift given for sound equipment, there were others who also gave above and beyond. We had another sizable donation made towards whatever else is needed for the ministry by an anonymous donor. Two of our other regular supporters sent above and beyond to bless the children while I am here. I spoke briefly at my church before leaving on this trip. They generously gave to help with my airline ticket & accommodations. One of the members of the praise band wanted to give me his personal amplifier to help with our sound system needs. His heart was golden, but I just couldn’t take it with me without paying too much as excess luggage.

I also had sent word out to those who are sponsoring our children to consider giving a monetary gift so we could replace the TV that was stolen four months ago. We were able to collect enough to purchase a 40” TV that would be mounted on the wall. This is a valuable
 tool for the home used with great discretion by Godfrey. The children have grown to LOVE the time we have together to watch Christian movies such as “War Room.” It challenges their hearts and motivates them to want to deepen their own walk with the Lord. Last timewatching“WarRoom”leftapermanentmarkontheirgrowingspirituallives. Special thanks to the sponsors who gave towards this need. The TV was a gift presented to the family by all of the Raining Hope sponsors. It means more than you can possibly imagine.

My passport also seemed to take it own journey before I left. If only passports could talk I could find out where it had been for a week! I sent my passport to the Ugandan Embassy in Washington D.C. over a week and a half before leaving for Maryland. I had already submitted the application to the Embassy online for the required Visa almost 2 weeks before. Because I was visiting my family in the San Francisco Bay Area that week, I mailed it from there overnight express. It was guaranteed to arrive the next day...which is why you pay $22.95! The other requirement is to purchase the return trip for the passport and include it in the envelope. So a total of $45.90 later, I was expecting the passport back well in advance of leaving for Maryland. I have done it this way for the past 10 years and never had a problem. Would’t you know the one time that I misplaced the tracking receipt is when the passport seemed to have gone off the radar. The closer it got to the day of departure, the more concerned I became. To top it all off, since I mailed it from a post office in the Bay Area, I could ’t easily go and hunt down the tracking receipt in person. Eventually, the post office found the number but it only confirmed that the actual envelope was missing in action. It showed that it had not yet arrived after five days! Danny Gokey has a song called, “Tell Your Heart to Beat Again.” Believe me...the context of that song meant something totally different to me at that moment!

I made calls to the Embassy wanting to know if they received it. I never talked with anyone directly. Leaving voice messages was all I could do. “Where in the World is Eydie’s Passport?” was becoming the theme phrase of that week. Since I am physically in Uganda, you already know the end of the story! Eventually and mysteriously the passport made it’s way into the prepaid envelope. The day before I left for Maryland I had the passport in hand. Whew! I imagine if the passport could talk it would say, “What happens on the journey in the envelope stays in the envelope!” My journey trying to track it down was quite enough for me! (P.S. Yes... I did get $22.95 back because of their overnight guarantee!)

At the last minute while packing, I had to give in and take a third bag from LAX to Washington D.C. I was trying to avoid this because I have to pay for all checked baggage for the domestic flight. I still had too much to bring, more in weight than volume. I discovered the third bag domestically was only $75 (compared to $155 for international). Knowing that the contents were important to include I packed the third bag.

I regularly take a shuttle now from my home to LAX. This particular shuttle driver was new to me. I spent the first part of the drive answering the normal questions as to what I do and where I am going. He heard all about the children of Raining Hope and how God is blessing our work. God put me in this van with the exact driver He desired to begin my incredible journey. Normally you have to pay a small fee if you have oversized bags or anything over two pieces of luggage. There were only two of us that day in the van so he told me not to worry. But when he dropped me off at the terminal, I tried to give him an extra tip. He actually refused the tip and asked me to buy a book or something for one of the children. I was speechless at this small but kind gesture. 

When I went inside to check in, I had already paid online for the first two bags. I was fully prepared to pay for the third bag at the counter. When I told the agent the story, she ended up not charging me for the extra bag! Speechless. 

I found my way to the gate and greeted one of the agents that I have gotten to know over the past three years since flying back and forth to Maryland to visit Carol. I had not seen her in awhile. This kind woman upgraded my seat to an exit row ... the now infamous seat 17C!

Then in that exit row, is where I met my new friend seated in 17A. That conversation was a precious gift to me & Raining Hope to launch Chapter 22. This person as well was suppose to sit in another row. He ended up upgrading which changed his seat assignment. It was definitely a divine appointment!


These updates seem to be chasing the story! Up until now it has been what has led to getting me here! The next update has at least caught up to us in Uganda! I have four days of stories that will be full & rich of what God is doing in my home in Africa, in the beautiful country of Uganda, in a town called Jinja in a home called Raining Hope!

Remaining speechless,
mama eydie kisakye

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