My Playlist This Week

Jammin’ ‘n Slammin’!

I think I’ve listened to Toby Mac’s new song more times than I can count and watched the video almost as many times! I don’t know how many times we’ve seen him perform live but I know the first time was not long after he went solo. Our granddaughter and grandson are fans of his also. I think maybe his video for this song is his best video so far! Can’t wait to hear the rest of the CD!

Crowder ❤️❤️. As soon as we got busy this week with so many projects all at once the devil started in from all sides. Problems with girls we love as daughters. Our own daughter that was being manipulated and teaching her stealing and hiding things from us was okay. Now those consequences have fallen heavy on our shoulders. Table saw that was needed for the training center broke down and Chris couldn’t keep it going this time. And people, there’s no Lowe’s, Home Depot or Walmart here! Electrical wire for the training center – no one had any! It was one thing after another of the devil trying to steal our joy. In the kitchen one of those days I just started yelling “run devil run”. Scared Raelee a little bit I told her he is real and he is trying to steal the joy we’ve had the past few weeks and I’m not going to let him have mine.

He also has new songs and they have been played almost as much as the new Mac’s songs! And am I the only one that doesn’t see red hair? 🤣

https://youtu.be/6TzECToPYIk

So these are songs I’ve played a lot this week! I love in “I Am” the chorus – “I am
Holding on to You
I am
Holding on to You
In the middle of the storm
I am holding on
I am!

There is another video to the same song “I Am” on YouTube that is very moving, from the movie “Son of God”

We started off last week, first a sit down with one of our Ugandan daughters and have a tough talk with. And then I had to had to have a talk with our other Ugandan daughter! I, and then with Christian had to have a difficult talk with her but we told her when she repents that God is there to forgive. We have forgiven her. He uses our pasts, I found myself in somewhat a similar position thirty-five years ago, before coming to Christ but He has used that situation that the devil could have used for evil, God used it in a very big way for good. We will always be by her side but there will be consequences she’s going to have to face. The consequences of my actions still affect people in my life that I love, but thank God He forgives and as His word says:

“The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. he does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust.” Psalm 103:12

These are some of the songs that have helped me get through without wanting to run away (okay, maybe hide for a minute!). Music, especially songs that glorify God or say the words that your heart feels are important to me and sometimes I forget how healing and how encouraging they can be. Music touches the soul.

Don’t get me wrong – these past few weeks have been the most encouraging and exciting weeks we’ve had in awhile. Just not without challenges!

We’ll see what next week’s playlist represents! Bye y’all, and thanks to all the new friends who have started following our sometimes crazy antics!

Never Early…Never Late

Don’t give up!

If you’ve followed my blog for long you know all about the rabbit project. About four and a half years ago I felt God put it on my heart to raise rabbits to help with all the malnutrition here. The plan was to have a training class, to show how rabbits can be raised easily and inexpensively and they can feed their children and themselves meat every day. Because it was something new I was laughed at and if it wasn’t going to make fast and easy money then most people weren’t interested.

It is such a frustrating thing to see so many children that only have a corn flour porridge everyday, even when the family has chickens and eggs. But they are sold for school fees or to buy the flour so that they can make it stretch. There is no nutritional value in maize flour. And though the focus on education is important, hungry and malnourished children don’t learn as well if they aren’t healthy.

What I would like you to get out of this is, just when you are ready to give up, as I have been, God shows up. That’s the hard part, patience through the times you don’t see things happening in the way you envisioned or even thought was the vision God gave you. I’ve been struggling whether I was mistaken, that maybe the idea was just my own. I spent forty hours a week in the first few years trying to do all “I” could to at least sell some to help keep feeding two hundred to sometimes four hundred rabbits!

Then God gave me the answer and the blessing of seeing my dream of feeding those most vulnerable come true in a big way just as I was ready to give up!

The same Pastor friend that is working on the school for orphans and is already caring for about 134 teenagers and the few small ones found out we raise the rabbits. He was so excited he wanted to start training right then! And we were leaving in two days to see our son for two months! But the excitement he had that there was a way besides chickens and agriculture they could have their own food to feed these children was infectious!

Taking notes and soaking in as much information as they could!

Pastor and a teacher or two and some students started coming in the end of March for two days every week. They went through all the training of feeding and sicknesses, how to recognize and treat. And the fun parts of cleaning the cages and how important that is.

For the last three to four weeks they have built their own cages and are ready for some rabbits! I am so excited for them but I am blessed beyond measure that even though “my plan” didn’t go as I expected and on MY time frame, God knew. And this will be a blessing not only to the kids there at the school but prayerfully to their community once they see that they too can raise rabbits for meat easily and inexpensively.

We are thankful we have been able to bless this school, and these children who have no one else but this man who has been Pastor/Mother/Father to them all. As much as we can whether it is through the Hope for Girls or helping with raising rabbits or their school as they come along, we want to walk with them.

Thank you Lord and Hooray for Pastor Emerson and Global High School! As you have been blessed, you don’t even know the blessings you have given us!

Don’t give up. If you feel God has given you a calling, a project or a ministry just know it’s not always (rarely is!) in our own timing or understanding. But if we are faithful and keep at it unless He tells us to quit the blessings are beyond measure!

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
And lean not on your own understanding;
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He shall direct your paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

Faithful in What is Least

10 who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much. Luke 16:10

I talked a lot about Jenifer. She is our farm manager, volunteers to educate pregnant and new mothers, immunizes babies and more. To me she is Wonder Woman! She has raised five girls and two sons pretty much all on her own. She still has one boy left in his last year of school. We have seen her grow as a great and Godly woman since being here and mentoring and discipling her. She and her daughters for sure have grown so much in their faith. We are still praying for the sons that they come to know Jesus also.

From the five girls we have Haria, the oldest girl and is a midwife. Salima went to college and is now a social worker. I write about her often and how I wouldn’t know what to do without her. For four years of our time here she had been away at school, so the last two years she has really helped us to enlarge our ministry. Takia is a seamstress/clothing designer, Takamida is also in school to be a midwife and the youngest daughter Nswiba just started nursing school. The youngest boy, Ibra says he wants to be a mechanic. Good, honest mechanics (even in the states!) are hard to find. So that will be a good profession for him.

But this post is about Jenifer’s oldest son Nelson. I would say that now he is in his thirties. When we came here we were told he was a hard worker, he could dig a foundation or latrine in nothing flat! And he was responsible, whatever he was instructed to do he did. But as for other skills he just hadn’t had anyone to teach him.

We also support a school about twenty-thirty miles away. During our second year here they needed some of their classrooms remodeled and plastered. Christian took a group of guys from our village and worked with them. They learned the importance of creating a strong foundation, how important it is to do the job correctly so that the workers that come behind to do the other work (floors, ceilings etc) could do their work correctly. They learned this because they could see how the incorrect way work was done before they came to do their job made it job that much harder.

There have been other opportunities in building here on our property, and putting flagstone on our porches. Something they’ve never done before. Many in the village were so impressed that they could do such good work. They didn’t know there was so much talent in these young men. But they were being taught to do these jobs well and not just throw things together. Nelson is really only one of two guys Christian can put in charge of a job and know it will get done correctly and in a timely fashion. So they became known as “professionals”!

I just recently learned that because of the skills he learned working with Christian he is consistently working on building for people. Even just got a contract with a man to build homes and apartments for him.

I just wanted to honor this young man who took what he learned and used those skills so that he is now known not just here but in other places as a hard worker who is responsible, honest and gets the job done! We are really proud of what he has accomplished. There are many others that acquired the same skills but have never tried to apply themselves.

Mama’s Day

On Monday we hosted twenty-four expectant mothers. We were expecting twenty-seven but some had already went into labor, one had a sick mother she was caring for and one had given birth the night before. (The ones that had already had their babies were still given the tote bags, we just took out the mama kit) They came so that we could give out the Mama kits that have everything they need when giving birth. Jenifer also gave a message to them about pre-natal and post-natal care. (This is what she does for the government.) She also tells them of the importance of immunizing their babies and family planning shots. She is qualified to administer both.

In Uganda (and other third world countries) a woman in labor is expected to bring her own supplies for birth. The hospitals don’t even get them the sterile instruments they need. The current maternal mortality ratio in Uganda is 336 maternal deaths per 100,000 live births. Infant mortality is 43 deaths per 1000 live births, with 42% of the mortality occurring during the neonatal period. Many of these deaths are related to either poor health of the mother when pregnant, not having regular visits to a doctor or unsanitary conditions during child birth.

A Mama kit has everything a mama needs for giving birth, and is all packed in a sterile package they are not to open until it is time to use. It has both a plastic sheet for mother and one for putting the baby on. There’s a scalpel and string to tie off the umbilical cord, and cotton. We have been asking $10 donations for the kit. That is at cost, we make no profit from these, we just want healthy births for mother’s and babies.

I have spent a lot of time on different projects to find materials but when you live in a culture that sometimes call things differently (I ask for a thermos and will never find. It’s called a flask). But during quarantine I can say something awesome came from it. I became friends with someone in Kampala that could send some things we needed. For five months we weren’t allowed on the roads. Only food deliveries or medicine. People even needed permission from their chairman and local police to go to the hospital in an emergency.

We still talk and he still gets me things I can’t get here, and when he found out we give girls kits and mama kits along with all the other things we do, he and his wife want to help. She is looking for fabric for me, he has gotten me the mama kits at a price that we can now give not only the mama kit but also a receiving blanket, pads for after delivery, soap, panties (knickers), washcloths and a very nice tote bag that our seamstress sews. I’m not one to be prideful but after years of trying to do as much as I can for women and girls this has really excited me and I am proud of myself! I am very thankful that meeting my friend at a terrible time during covid has brought about blessings I didn’t know would come. I am thankful God put us together. And I am so thankful to be able to do more for mothers. The mama kits are so important but other things get forgotten that they also need right after birth.

All of this plus money for the seamstress of the bags for the same $10!

I did tell them they better bring me babies to see after they’ve delivered. I’ve either bought mats, given transport money to get to the hospital or mama lots over four years and only two have ever brought their babies to see me!

Our tags are on the way to see on to the bags! We know it may be a small thing to some but for us and our Hope Ministries it is a big deal! We can’t wait to be able to have these on so that other expectant mothers may know where they can come for mama kits and education!
These are 16”x18” Same fabric doubled. They look expensive! But cost about $1.50!
Takia is a wonderful young lady. Just goes with the flow. She was working on forty girls kits and I came in and asked her if she could stop that and sew 30 tote bags – oh yeah, in three days! She just said “No problem” and went to buy the fabric. She had them done in two!

If you would like to support mother’s or girls please go to http://www.themandate.com 100% goes to the ministries, all administrative fees are covered by our board members.

She’s getting prepared!

God’s Appointments

I was going to write a different post but I got some news yesterday I want to share. I want to share for two reasons, one is you never know the fullness of God’s plans, even on what we would think is a small scale. The other reason, we sometimes don’t even think about the way in which God works. Our vision of Gods kingdom is so small we can’t fathom the mystery and greatness of His works. We only see one thing but God sees all and not only is He working on you and what He asks you to do but he is already putting other plans in place so that it all comes together when you least expect it.

My last post mentioned that smiling little boy – Suluman – I wanted so much to take home with me. The one that had been abandoned at a young age (he is four and I think I said he was three) I had even asked Pastor Emerson if any of the children are ever adopted out. Apparently there were more people around listening (something that is common here I’ve found many times. I’m not going to say busybodies, but….In our village especially!) I turned to Chris and asked him if we could pray about it. I will just say, I am 57 and am raising an eleven year old girl so I already have my hands full. And they say this one is a little firecracker! Of course Chris said we could pray about it if that’s what I wanted to do but there would really have to be confirmation it was God working it out!

I believe God has a sense of humor, along with His plans and not mine. I have said many many times I don’t even like kids – except my own and grandkids! (Don’t judge me!) Once they hit 3-4 you can have them! I also say that especially here with so many beautiful children that have no families, that is why God gave me Raelee. To remind me that cute little baby does grow out of that cuteness and dependence on you and one day grow their wings and fly from the nest! . (That’s why I’ll stick with animals!) But since I got saved He has put me with children. Most times because I was the only one around to do it and a lot of times it wasn’t willingly but I always was blessed. (Unless it was teenagers – I just don’t know how to relate to them!) But here knowing the things these girls, boys and babies go through, my love for them all has grown.

So, it seems the word was spread around that some mzungus had come to their school and wanted to know if they could take him home. Whispers that mzungus were going to adopt him and take him away. (No offense but rumors can spread so fast that we find out what we are doing almost before we even do it in our own village!)

A lady came to Pastor, seemingly upset. He said she had often come around and sometimes would bring him food or clothes and even as we were there had bathed him and dressed him and he had walked off holding this lady’s hand. Pastor Emerson said there were times he wondered about this lady’s affections for this one boy. She told him she had heard that mzungus might be taking him away and she was very distressed. She told him she was his mother. Her husband had left her and she couldn’t care for him as a baby so she had left him there. But through the last few years had still been in his life and did what she could to help when she could. She was so afraid that he would be taken away by the mzungus and she wouldn’t see him anymore.

Through his own tears, of joy and amazement of God and God’s timing Pastor Emerson told me this story. And through my tears I said “Well, I got my answer to prayers pretty clearly”! A child belongs with his mother and I am so thankful that she was courageous enough to step up and say she was the one who left him because she knew she couldn’t care for him. She had pictures of him after she had him and they had it checked out with the Chairman of their area. She has a new husband and I don’t know their situation but either they still can’t fully care for him or she feels he has become at home there she still wants him to stay with at the school. She still wants to give him whatever she is able to. We pray there will come a day she can take him home and they will be a family.

It’s an amazing story of love, between the talk with Pastor Emerson and how his girls need the help of Hope for Girls to how it also gave a woman the courage to say she gave her baby up. God is always working situations but we don’t see the fullness. He knew exactly what would happen and in His timing. We sometimes get so wrapped up in what “we” are doing for the Kingdom that we don’t realize what He is doing all around us when we obey and GO!

I have the joy of knowing I will still see him when we go there but not all the work of raising him! And great joy he will know he is loved by many, especially his mother who was scared and just wanted a better life for him than she thought she could give.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made


We were able to visit a school a couple weeks ago where all the children are orphans. There were sixty-five girls that were of the age of puberty. We went to educate them about their changing bodies and give them the supplies they need. While we were having tea with their headmaster/Pastor we could hear them rejoicing and singing to Jesus. The spirit there was so heavy there.

I got in trouble because I didn’t get little girl’s shirt ordered in time!

There were so many smiling faces but some very sad stories before they had come there. One young girl had been raped by her father when she was seven yet she would still go to his grave and cry. One girl had been there for a couple years because her mother had just left her in front of a store. It was heartbreaking to hear their stories. All but four live in a very small dormitory. And this wasn’t all the girls that live there. Schools are slowly starting back so we will be going back soon to visit another grade when they come back.

We always start with a message for them to let them know they are special and God has made them just the way He wanted them, and has a plan for each of them. We encourage them to stay in school and get an education. We don’t record the reproductive educational part because we want it to be private so they won’t be scared or embarrassed to ask personal questions. And we don’t allow any boys – even Pastor Emerson!

Their headmaster is a wonderful man of God who is doing all he can with very little to care for all these teenagers, both girls and boys. The day I told him about our Hope for Girls I could just see a burden lifted. He told me just the day before one of the girls that live there had asked him for pads. She had been using old dirty cloth. How embarrassing for both of them. He said sometimes he has to make hard choices – food or pads. We feel so blessed we were able to go and talk with these girls and just love on them. Imagine what impact just $10 dollars and showing the love of Jesus does for these girls to not bear the shame and embarrassment and are able to stay in school.

The school is what we would call high school, they call secondary, but because some of the people in their village have heard he has taken in orphans there have been four little ones left there. One lady just left her baby at the door when no one was in the office because she had dropped the baby on his head. One mother left her little boy because she felt he had a big head, another because the child has a club foot. These children are considered a curse. So Pastor pays what little he can raise to a widow to take care of these children, they are not old enough to go to primary school yet.

It was very hard for me to leave this cutie. He was the one abandoned because his head was a little large. He is about three and doesn’t talk but they say he is quite the handful! I don’t understand how anyone could leave that cuteness!

We are Out of Here!

We know everyone has been affected by the pandemic but it has been especially hard for us as missionaries. Every year our organization funds us to have a break. It is needed every year. Last year I had surgery and really didn’t get a break. But this year we missed our family vacation in September because we were on total lockdown – five months not able to leave our house. I went through a rough three month depression because for a year and a half we had been planning and saving and haven’t seen our kids and grandkids for over two years.

Our airport finally reopened at the beginning of the month so we are, Lord willing going to see our kids. We didn’t count on all the extra costs of testing and we will have to quarantine for 14 days in a hotel at our expense when we return so we are asking of God puts it on your heart and you would like to give to help with the extra expense please go to

If you scroll down to “other” in the tip option you can put any amount or no amount to tip. There has been some confusion with this!

https://gf.me/u/y4pnt6

And thank you and God bless you ahead of time. Every little bit will help us to get to our kids across the ocean!

New Direction

God has put on our hearts a new plan for our ministry. It has been a great encouragement to us to have a plan to have some self sufficiency. Christian and I have struggled and prayed for God to show us His plans for the ministry here.

We are mapping out one acre of our property to plant maize to make posho to give the widows and schools we support, eggplants and beans. The plan is whoever is, for example, already growing eggplants will trade some for tomatoes and so on.

Soon we will have a training center set up in one of our buildings where tailoring will be taught by one of our girls we helped support through training and soap making. For the tailoring class we want to start girls with fabric so that as they are learning they will be making school uniforms to give away to families that struggle to pay school fees and supplies, to teach the girls in the program to bless others as they have been blessed. Each school uniform costs approximately $3. After they have the skills we will supply the local fabric so that they may start making clothes they can sell to support themselves. We feel that if they pay a couple dollars it will give them more incentive to learn. We are also praying that at the end of the course the one with the best grade will get a sewing machine. The cost of one sewing machine is $150 and we would like to start off with four. The other graduates will get a starter kit with measuring tape, scissors, and fabric to get started on their own business. We believe this is Gods plan, and most will be self sufficient but we still need donations for sewing machines and fabric. As they graduate they will also have the chance to be seamstresses for making the Hope for Girls kits and earn income for themselves. Each kit costs $10 and that includes payment for the seamstress.

Salima and I will also start a girls club for older girls besides giving the Hope for Girls kits. So many girls are married off at very young ages or have to quit school and we would like to teach them about God and how important it is to follow His plans for their lives and to mentor them in learning skills so that they can support themselves and their family so that they don’t feel their only choice is to marry. It will also help them encourage each other with strength and esteem.

We also have 30 ready to give away chickens we have raised and have more chickens laying. We’ve had to buy our eggs for the past few months so we could have chickens to give away but it is worth it to be able to bless the widows and those in need. Chickens, eggs and goats are like money in the bank, kept for times they need money. The goal is for them to then give back one chicken so that we are able to give to someone else. The ones who don’t give back will be marked off of our support list as incentive to give.

We are excited to have a plan for some self sufficiency so that money raised may be used for Hope for Girls kits, Bibles, our prison ministry, bore holes and helping schools that are supporting and educating orphans.

We know that these are hard times for many in America but anything you can give goes directly to the ministry. And you will be a blessing and make such an impact on the ministry. We are blessed to be the hands and feet of Jesus and you will have a part in that.

2 Corinthians 9:8-11 says:
Besides, God is able to make every blessing of yours overflow for you, so that in every situation you will always have all you need for any good work. As it is written, “He scatters everywhere and gives to the poor; his righteousness lasts forever.” Now he who supplies seed to the farmer and bread to eat will also supply you with seed and multiply it and enlarge the harvest that results from your righteousness. In every way you will grow richer and become even more generous, and this will cause others to give thanks to God because of us,