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147 Million Orphans


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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

time away...

God doesn't come and go. God LASTS. He's creator of all you can see or imagine. He doesn't get tired out, doesn't pause to catch his breath. And He knows EVERYTHING, inside and out. He energizes those who get tired, gives fresh strength to dropouts. For even young people tire and drop out, young folk in their prime stumble and fall. But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles, They run and don't get tired, they walk and don't lag behind. Isaiah 40:28

To say that the past year has been a blur is an understatement. After meeting Katie, Gwen and I had an instant stir in our hearts to help..which led to sitting on Amazima's board...which led to starting the paperwork for adoption through Uganda. THEN, Gwen and I decided to start a little project to help people fundraise for their adoptions because all we EVER heard was "I would LOVE to adopt, but we just can't afford it"....SO 147 Million Orphans was created. Then our wheels started turning...why not feed children with each purpose?...why not help the women in the Karomojong village be self sustainable...why not employ some local refugees and let them make orphans bags and help them have a better life here in the US....on and on and on it goes....

Needless, to say, Gwen and I fuel each others fire. We know WITHOUT DOUBT that this was God's plan, because what we thought was going to be a fun, little project has grown and grown and grown and now we are LITERALLY chasing it. It is a fabulous thing now that we have an accountant, bookkeeper, 3 women who share our hearts and want to volunteer (BIG kudos to Jan, Michelle, and Amy!) throw in three surgeries for Maggie (Gwen's lil one) and the reality of Josie having HIV, and all of her medical appointments + surgery. With the end of school quickly approaching I started to feel as though I could not breathe. I have learned to not look ahead, and to just take one day at a time. BUT, the thought of summer being right around the corner is exciting yet COMPLETELY overwhelming.

SO, my knight in shining armor ONCE AGAIN came to the rescue and took me away. I left my children with 6 different people on a rotation for their "care taking" ( typically the first question that I am asked.."who keeps all of your kids?!?!") I slept the first 16 out of 24 hours that I was away. Every morning I awake to the pics that you see in this post, and I have just soaked up scripture. the Lord has been pouring HIS word over my heart like a river through a parched dessert. I have been reminded that He has me in the palm of His hand each and every moment, NO MATTER how chaotic life is right now. I just have to keep prayer in the center of my life so that I can stay in CONSTANT communication with him so that I will not only "know" but FEEL that He is in control, when I feel as though it is spinning completely OUT OF CONTROL.

When I look at Mike I am reminded that he is the most handsome man that I have EVER laid my eyes on. Just a glance of him gives me goose bumps. We have been able to talk through the loss of my to deal with my heartache for my brother and his kids... weed through situations with each one of our children and just be quiet.

I can't share this trip without the reality that accompanies it....(Just a funny little side story) Hearing Mike telling this story is actually REALLY funny, but I'll try to do it justice in words...

Through the years, the little white paper bag that is kept in the pouch in front of you in the airplane has become my best friend. I have mastered how to very discreetly pull it out, throw up very quietly, without anyone around me ever even knowing it. (Renee Manuel was very impressed with this gift of mine on our trip home from Uganda..haha) Our landing on this trip was ANYTHING but a smooth one. I reached above me to turn my air on HIGH, Mike reached for my little white bag and held it out for me, but thankfully I did not have to use it. My stomach started churning and continued to be unsettled for the next few hours. In the meantime, Mike and I decided to go the the grocery to get a few necessities for the week (i.e. coffee and yummy hazelnut creamer..) As we walked down each aisle my stomach started feeling more and more unsettled. I started feeling REALLY bad and Mike glanced over at me and said "why do you have such a scowl on your face?" and instantly my face went WHITE and I responded "i think that I am going to be sick". He started towards a worker to ask directions to the bathroom and when he turned back to me I had my head in a cardboard box that I found sitting on the floor that they unpacked. He stood there with buggy and groceries in hand while I very quietly and discreetly disposed of the rot in my belly. He said several people passed and looked over at me and just kept walking like it was just another day at the grocery. After a bit, I started feeling better and then was left with the decision of what to do with this box in my hands. I decided to carry it outside and put it in the trash. As I headed out the front doors, I was stopped by a guard who was BOUND and determined to see what my purchase entailed. I tried to explain to him that it was trash and not groceries but he didn't understand English. There are really no words to describe the look on his face as he stuck his nose down into my box in determination to see what I was so quickly trying to get out the door. It took Mike about an hour for the reality of what had just happened to sink in. REALLY?!? I know he was thinking "we have come all of this way just for my wife to puke and sleep the whole time?" Thankfully, I am now rested with a settled stomach and we have LAUGHED until our jaws have ached about out shopping experience.

He had NO IDEA what he was signing up for when he married me.....


RaVae Erickson said...

Oh Suzanne! A) what a wonderful husband you have! B) Prayers are being lifted up for you...for strength, encouragement, and peace. C) ROFLOL!!!!!

Jim and April said...

wow...sounds like you have an amazing husband! Glad you two were able to get away together for some rest! Similar things happened to me on my honeymoon and my husband was so amazing and handled it and took care of me so well! We went parasailing and on the boat ride, I started puking over the boat and then we went snorkeling and I got stung in the neck by a jellyfish and got it was still worth it, and I still had such a great time and can now look back at those two not so fun events and laugh and know that was just the beginning of Jim holding me through rough times and that to this day he is still there for me more than ever and I could not love him more!

Tisra said...

Ha! Whew; you *have* been through a lot. I know the day I met you was a difficult one (your sister-in-law had taken a turn for the worse and your father had been hospitalized, too). However, you seemed to be handling it all with incredible grace and strength- weren't there a zillion kids in your yard??? :-) God must have been carrying you that day!

If a flight and vacation is what it takes to get sleep.... it's worth it! Enjoy and recharge!

(I must also say that I admire your ability to divvy up your children. That task always keeps me from asking for help! Even with just 4, organizing friends to watch the kids feels burdensome even when the end result is good. Well done!)

Mandi said...

So thankful for your time away. Sorry for the tummy troubles, but this story is hilarious (now that I know you are ok). I just had to explain to my nephew (fam vacation) what on earth I was laughing about. Blessings to you & your man. I hear you met some of my dear G'dale AL friends...sorry I miss the caravan of "Crazies", but all in God's timing maybe our paths will cross. So blessed to read your blog.

Kristi J said... awesome that you get away...I can't even imagine such a thing :)!! Enjoy your vacation..LOVED the puke story :) kj

The McBs said...

1. HILARIOUS! pahahaha!
2. Amazing. So glad the Lord has given you guys time away together, a time of rest and focus, and clearly, a time to laugh!
Great to see!

Bethany said...

So where did you go? The pictures ARE BEAUTIFUL!!! :)

Renee said...

HILArioUS!!!!!!!!!! I certainly DO know how discreet you can be with your airsick bag! :) Glad your stomach settled and pray your trip will be the respite your soul needs and deserves! Love you sis!

Abbie and Kendall said...

WE ALL MISSSSS YOU...but so glad you're having funnn :)


Susan said...

Hi; I would love to e-mail you, but when I tried the link in your profile it didn't work. If you are willing to e-mail me, here's my address:


Alison said...

Love reading your blog! Love your family, your heart, your story...just precious! So glad that ya'll got to get away! So fun! I have gotten really sick on airplanes time I passed out with the white bag in my not fun! Ha!


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I am a lover of Jesus. I have the most fabulous husband that anyone woman could ask for. The Lord has blessed us with 7 beautiful children. I started this blog so that friends and family could follow our trip to Uganda to visit Katie Davis. I have decided to keep blogging to help bring orphan awareness to the world around me.
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