Thursday was the second day of the conference Christian is leading. When he was first approached about doing it there were to be about five different speakers/preachers. He was under the assumption there would be different speakers each day and didn’t know the conference started on Sunday. He was led to believe it didn’t start until Wednesday! So three different preachers had preached Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. That has left him now preaching three services each day. It is gone really well though with hundreds of people still coming, even in the morning/afternoon services with hundreds coming forward for salvation. Praise be to God!
Meanwhile a few hours away we are staying at the hotel close to my Dr. since I am having some medical issues. We have a very nice maid who has been checking on us and schooling is going as normal! Little Miss has brought her doll and I overheard her in her bedroom – “What do you want to wear? And we are not doing this eeny miney mo thing because that takes too long”! She is so funny!
Today was the first day of a three day Evangelical conference Christian went to in Northern Uganda. He said there were between 100-200 people for the morning services and 400-500 for evening services. He said there were hundreds that came forward to accept Jesus and some of the stories from people were heartbreaking. There was a couple with their little baby that wanted prayer for protection because their village witch doctor is trying to take the baby to raise him up to be a witch doctor and they don’t want this. He was the only speaker at all of them, another scheduled Preacher from Poland got very sick and had to cancel.
The hardest part for him going to the places he is to is he never gets all the info, clear ideas of what the program is – and there is definitely always a program whether it is consistently followed. But he is never told. For the first part of the morning he was pretty much just sitting in a room with a lot of people who spoke no English! Sometimes he is just put in a room for hours by himself with no idea of what’s to happen. But he always knows God has his back and leans on the knowledge God will guide him and give him the words to say. So please pray for him, he wasn’t expecting to be the only speaker and preaching more than once a day so after a full day he is in his room tonight praying for the extra messages he may have to give tomorrow.
(Above is Takia in her own design)
Meet Takia, one of the three girls we help support in their career paths. She is going to tailoring school after struggling through high school and finally dropping out. We were worried about what she would do going forward and she came one day to tell us goodbye. She was on her way to start tailoring school. The third week she came home and had made Christian, Raelee and me clothes, nicely sewn clothes that fit without having our measurements! We were so proud of her and happy she found something she is good at and can possibly have a better future with the skills she is learning. She also found she has some artistic creativity and with her own designs that will set her apart from the many, many seamstresses and tailors here. She can be a successsful designer if she keeps striving at it. Because we were so surprised and proud of her we told her we would give her support since she has to buy all the materials she uses in her classes.
About four weeks into school she brought me about fifteen little skirts and asked me to put them up as she was going to keep sewing until we had enough to give all the children that come to Sunday School. She has now been in school six months and should have graduated in December but because at least half her class could not pass the exam they extended everyone until March. Which is very unfair to the ones, including Takia, that passed. It is a hardship just to pay for schooling and training so they have to come up with more money because of the ones who didn’t pass. Over the past six months she has occasionally brought little piles of skirts and shorts for me to put up.
On the Sunday before Christmas I already had the boxes for the children and we had many children that don’t usually come. Takia had come home with yet another box of clothes. We decided to wait until the next Sunday to see if we could give them out. There were about ninety-seven children. We counted the clothing and she was short about seven but we had t-shirts that had been sent with the baby blankets from the great ladies in America so we also gave them out. I can’t even tell you how excited these children were at receiving new clothes. She had made dresses and skirts for the older girls. We did run short a few on shorts for the babies so they gave the baby boys skirts. Baby Christian, who is usually either naked or with just a shirt on as he was that day, got a skirt and he was so happy! Someone laughed about him wearing a skirt and I said when he was only a couple months old his mama had brought him over in a frilly yellow dress. Confused me to say the least! It doesn’t matter when they are little but it is hard to tell which are boys and which are girls!
Everyone was giving me and Christian the credit for the clothes and I told them all that we only helped supply her materials but Takia did all the work and did it because she loves her village and all the children that come to Sunday School. She is using the gifts and talents God has given her to bless others. She isn’t keeping that talent to only benefit herself. She said her schoolmates laughed at her and questioned why she would do that when she could be making clothes for herself and also sell clothing she makes. She told me that we have taught her to have a giving heart, she’s been helped so it makes her want to pass that on. I give her and her sisters my clothes and she knows how that feels, and wants others to feel the same way. We are just so proud of her accomplishments, I have to admit we were a little skeptical since she didn’t do so well in high school.
Please pray for Takia, as she has had her schooling extended. That she be an example to her classmates but also to the children she blessed so greatly. We plan on putting her to work on our Hope for Girls project so that she can earn her own sewing machine. I believe she will take full advantage of the opportunity given her, we have seen big changes in her personality already so I know she has a good future in front of her. And I am relieved that now I know what we can do next Christmas and take the pressure off of me trying to get 150-200 gifts for the children!
Baby Christian was thrilled with his new skirt! (he was pantless as usual!)
The past year we gave away over 50 receiving blankets to pregnant moms and were able to speak to them and pray over their blankets for them and their babies. Last week we gave the rest of the blankets to nineteen more pregnant ladies. I got to see the last of the first round of fifteen babies this week! So I will have nineteen more to look forward to this year! They loved getting the blankets that were under one condition – they had to bring their baby when it was born so that I could see him or her! I think they like that even more, to show off their babies. I just love getting to hold them all!
Thanks again to all the ladies that contributed the blankets!