Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Not Just a Suitcase

Yesterday, we walked into a luggage store in Newport, Oregon, to find everything that we needed in regards to our luggage needs anyways. Now this may not seem remarkable really except that everything in this store is $20 or less "and" I have been looking for cheap suitcases for literally months now (and not just a few - actually, twelve).

I have searched all the likely places: clearance aisles at department stores, Goodwill, St. Vincent de Paul and every used goods store I could find. I even made a few purchases but just couldn't seem to "finish" my list of one pilot case and one extra large suitcase for each family member.

Also, you might think that this is not only just a suitcase but also just a 'to do' list. Well, yes, perhaps you are right. But the only thing for me is that this was a statement straight to the heart from God.

Only God knew how this need being met in such an awesome way (all at once) at this time could warm my heart and encourage my soul. For to me, His provision in the rest of the suit-cases showed in perhaps a simple way was just another glimpse of His plan in progress. You see, God is just like that. He knows how simple-minded I can be and how finite I am. I need to have even little reminders of His faithfulness even though He has never failed me. He has called us to Uganda and to Uganda He will take us. Whatever the need to get us there, He will indeed provide it in "His" most perfect timing. Yes, Father, once again I renew my full trust in You and will wait for You! Thank You!!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Container in Kenya!

Received news yesterday that indeed the container which contains most of our earthly possessions did arrive in Mombasa, Kenya, this week and is pending customs clearance.
Having gotten the house, this means that our things (and SHIM's) can be off-loaded into the house directly where it can be stored. SOOOOOO exciting!!!
It won't be long now before the container arrives in Jinja, Uganda. We are so grateful to Andy Smith and the SHIM staff who are taking care of all the details for us.
Yes, we definitely 'feel' as if we should be there soon now, but God has not provided all the funds quite yet. We are running at about 70-71% funded in monthly support and still need one time funds to cover airfare, immunizations, work visas and household set up/repairs.
Knowing that God has this much in the works makes it ever so exciting though that the time may be drawing near for Him to send us! Praise Him Who works miracles on our behalf and for His purposes. Please pray with us that we will see His perfect timing as He provides for all our needs.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A House for a Home

When Andy Smith emailed us over a week ago, we were excited. He had found a house that might possibly work for us!
The next email we received, Andy had done a walk through of the home. Not only was this possibly something to consider, it had EVERYTHING we wanted, needed and MORE! Yes, it has fallen into disrepair in spots and is in need of paint in a bad way ... BUT ... to us, this place seems like a mansion on earth for us!!!
Not only does this home have six bedrooms, there is a Boys' Quarters outback with two rooms, a spacious yard with fruit trees and an existing garden. The place is fenced in with vegetation covering just about all of the fencing. There is also a small house or chicken coop type structure with chicken wire. It is simply amazing to us to consider! All of this and it also overlooks Lake Victoria and the mouth of the Nile River!!!
We started praying over this immediately. The price was definitely right (just under what we had projected in our budget), but we had understood that a lot of landlords require not only a lease agreement of six to twelve months at a time, they also expect the full amount up front. After checking our financial statement from the Global Outreach Int'l Home Office, we were a long ways from having that kind of cash available. We prayed that God would either do a miracle to show us this was for sure His will or He would close all doors immediately and show us that He had something even better waiting for us in Jinja.
We had already decided in our hearts that this place would fill every possible ministry need we could imagine at this time. Our hopes had been not only to have plenty of rooms for our family as well as homeschooling, but to have a place for Andy and Karina Smith to stay whenever they needed it on the mainland; also, to have plenty of room to help with groups and teams that come through to work with SHIM and have a large yard to do a garden with space for the kids. My personal dream is to have a "Hospitality House," a place where people are encouraged and feel closer to God in some way because of their being there. (Because I do not believe I have the gift of hospitality, this would also be a miracle as God would definitely be responsible for such a thing!) Not only does this place have all of this and more, it is also located very near Ripon Port where SHIM lands their boat. Plus ... the timing of obtaining the house this month enables a place for all of our things as well as SHIM's things to be stored as soon as the container arrives. We just couldn't ask for more! (at least I can't imagine it ...)
Today, Andy called on the telephone, stating that he needed to know for sure within the hour if we wanted this place. There was another family wanting the house but Andy had asked about it first so we had first dibbs. Oh, my goodness! I shared with Andy that we definitely wanted the place but that we didn't have all of the rent money upfront yet. Ah ha! No problem! This landlord apparently only requires rent each month and we can certainly swing that!!! Ahhhhhh! Andy! YESSSSS!!!!!!!
Simple excitement quickly turned into overwhelming enthusiasm! Once again, God has shown His Word true in Ephesians 3:20-21 "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen!" (NIV) We had asked for at least 3 bedrooms. He gave us 6 rooms. We hoped for at least a workable kitchen. He gave us this plus even a small mudroom/laundry area. We hoped to be near enough to SHIM in some way to serve their needs. He gave us a home just up the road from the port SHIM uses regularly. We hoped for an extra room/guest area for Andy and Karina Smith to stay whenever needed. He gave us a separate Boys' Quarters with two rooms and a small kitchen. We hoped to be in the country or at least a fair yard for the children where we could have a garden. He gave us a garden, fruit trees, space for some small animals (like chickens), a fenced in space for the children and more. The list goes on as we are grateful for this house being provided for us, in advance. Not just a house, but soon to be our home! We are ever so grateful!!!