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Everything you've got

Big brown eyes, little hands, dirty with the Ugandan red dirt, holes in his shirt and pants, barefoot-walks through the doors of the church we do VBS at, as we mark the kids to keep track of them he opens the palm of his hand and I see 250 shillings. (worth 10 cents maybe) Probably thinking he had to pay to get in so he brought what he could. Nicole and I knelt down so he can see our eyes, closed the his hands, gave him a kiss and welcomed him into VBS.

This image is forever engraved in my heart...offering everything you've got just to hear the word of God. He couldn't have been any older than 4. I was tearing up as we let each child walk in, hugging them and loving on them. I couldn't do anything else but praise God for allowing me to take part in all of this.

Debira was her name...
After Jodi and Nicole taught at the Women's conference, teaching about forgiveness. Debira was the quiet one in our group. The leader asked her "is there anyone in your life that you need to forgive" she quietly said "I'm working on it." Through out the discussion time her and I kept making eye contact...I felt the need to encourage her. I told her I will be praying for her, she had a huge smile on her face. After we were dismissed she made her way over to me, asked for my name, and we talked. A beginning of a beautiful friendship. I told her that whatever it was she was going through, I will pray and that I hope one of these days she will share. I told her I would check on her tomorrow and after tomorrow and on and on. She hugged me so tight and said "May God bless you."

Lilian-ran to me with tears, clung to me with her arms around my neck so tight. As she was sobbing in my arms I just prayed. She doesn't speak English and I don't speak Lugandan, so I have no idea what she was crying about, but she ran to me...what a privilege it is to love on a child when they are hurt. Lilian is the one who says "my name is Natalia." She learned how to say "see you tomorrow" and now says it to me all the time. She is about 4 years old. Sassy little girl, but I love her tender moments.

Finally we visited an orphanage filled with older boys and girls, and when we walked in they said "welcome to our family." Touched my heart. As some of them shared their testimony, I was just in awe. Oh the faith they have, so amazing. Such strong young adults, striving to be people of God, the same God we serve. Hospitality to the max, I felt like a queen, felt so welcomed and loved right off the bat.

After today, watching the kids play, talking with the women in at the conference, interacting with Ugandan young adults...I'm bursting with joy.

God is showing me over and over what touches my heart the most, He is training me, He is teaching me, He is reminding me that it is ALL about Him. My life belongs to Him completely. we sang a song and the only words I could understand was "only you Jesus" yes ONLY YOU.

Blessed and filled with joy tonight.

Give everything you've got. Give every ounce of yourself to God and His people.


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