Sunday, October 31, 2010

My Girl!



We recently celebrated our daughter's 13th birthday. After having two wonderful boys I prayed for five years that the Lord would bless us with a little girl. I remember the day I had an ultrasound and the technician told me the baby was an msichana. I knew what that meant in Swahili, but I wanted to be sure. "That means girl, right?" The technician smiled and said that it indeed meant I was expecting a little girl.

I wasn't in labor for very long. For which I praise the Lord!! Bill actually helped to deliver this baby in the small mission hospital, Kijabe Hospital, in Kijabe, Kenya. I was anxious to find out if the technician was correct and waited for Bill to announce the sex of our new bundle of joy. When he didn't I said, "Well, is it a girl or a boy?" I'll never forget the words he spoke - words that reminded me to keep things in perspective. "Oh, I hadn't checked. I was counting toes and fingers." On October 24th, 1997 I gave birth to a healthy, fully-formed, baby girl.

I remember one day when Abigail was about 1 1/2 and I had decorated a wall while she was napping. She toddled into the room and when she saw it she clapped her hands and said, "Piddy Mommy!!" The budding signs of my kindred spirit and little decorator. (She hopes to one day be an interior designer.)

Another gift Abigail has is encouragement. She showed this gift early on as well. She was about 2 and in the process of potty-training. We were at the Walmart bathroom and she happily clapped for me and said, "Yeah! Good job Mommy! I'm so proud of you!"

I could write about many, many more stories. Like the time she cut her hair, the battle of the will over picking up Cherrios (BTW, I won!), and the tears of saying goodbye to friends to move back to Africa. However, I'll close this post in saying it has been a blessing to be Abigail's Mother. I look forward to the years ahead as I continue to watch her grown and become the woman God wants her to be. And I hope one day to be able to share all these stories with her daughter. =)

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Happy Anniversary

Praise the Lord for the past 23 wonderful years with my husband, Bill! I feel so blessed to be serving alongside my very best friend.

As I reflect on these years of marriage I have many happy memories. Memories of when each of our children were born. Memories of our children growing up. There are also the sad memories like when we lost child number four in a miscarriage and when both our Moms passed away. There are memories of victory and trials. Times of great rejoicing in what God is doing, as well as times when we just hung onto the fact that we know God knows best and will work all things together for our good.

Through all these times, good and bad, there is one thing that has remained consistent. Are you expecting me to say our love for each other? Well, although we love each other very much, we are sinful humans who don't always love as we should. No, the one thing that is always consistent is GOD. He never changes. His love never fails. When times are good - He's there. When times are tough - He's there. He promises that He'll never leave us nor forsake us. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever!

If you want to look back one day on 23 wonderful years of marriage, then might I urge you not to make yourself and your husband the main focus in your marriage. Make it the LORD.

Monday, May 3, 2010

She shall be saved in childbearing???

Bill and I are teaching through the New Testament to our workers. (Pastor Pelegrino and Pendo.) We are currently in the book of 1 Timothy. As we studied chapter 2 about the roles of women and men in the church we came to verse 15. "Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety." Of course we know from studying other verses that this isn't talking about obtaining salvation by the works of bearing children. Some would say it refers to a woman being the one to give birth to the Messiah, however, the commentary I read says that in the context it is referring to the fact that although women are not permitted roles of leadership within the church, she has the important role of training godly children in her home.

Let us not forget how important our role as wife and mother is. God did not make a mistake when He gave us the great responsibility of motherhood. Just this morning I got the sweetest message from my oldest son Tim who is attending Heartland Baptist Bible College. He said, "I love you guys so much, Mom and Dad! Thank you for being such amazing, God-fearing parents! God has blessed me more than I can ever thank Him for because of you guys!" I didn't write that to toot my own horn. I write it because I know that when our children are little we often don't hear thank you's. I just want to say DON'T GIVE UP! Even when it is hard, just keep pressing on; keep loving them, training them, and preparing them for their future life. Don't lose sight of the fact that the days of diapers and spills will come to an end. If we don't grow weary and faint, we will reap what we sow.

Proverbs 31:28a "Her children arise up, and call her blessed..."

Ladies Seminar

This past Saturday I had the joy of teaching, along with my fellow teammate Lisa Newland, and two other pastor's wives at a ladies seminar in Nyasaka. We taught on Silaha za Mungu (The Armor of God). Each of us took a different piece of the armor and taught on it. I gave the introduction to the lesson and spoke on our enemies. 1. The World, 2. Our Flesh, and 3. Satan, as well as the Belt of Truth.


When I got up to teach I introduced myself. I told them, I am a mother just like you. I stay at home and take care of my husband and children. They all clapped! Ahh, here is a teacher they could relate with! I explained that since my main job is taking care of my home, my Swahili may not be as good as I would like. They were so gracious. They were just happy to have me there. They helped me along as I made mistakes, pronounced things incorrectly, or used a word that wasn't appropriate. It was a great encouragement to me.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Memories

Abby has to write an autobiography for English. She was asking me questions about when she was little. "Mom, what was my personality when I was little?" "Did I favor you or Dad?" "Was I mischievous?" It brought back so many sweet memories!

I remember when I was a young mother, and feeling totally frazzled. The "older" moms would tell me, "Enjoy them while they are young. They grow up so quickly!" I have to admit, when I had two boys under two, the only thing that seemed to pass quickly was their nap! However, looking back now it's like life was a blurr. How can Tim be 19 and almost done with his first year of college?! Jon almost 18 and working? Then there's Abby my Kenya-born baby coming up on 13!

So you young moms... Enjoy them while they are young. They grow up so quickly! Take it from an "older" mom!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Where we call home...

We live in Mwanza, Tanzania. It is the second largest city in Tanzania. Mwanza is situated on the shores of Lake Victoria, and has a unique setting amongst huge boulders.



We recently had some guests from back "home." Our second son, Jon, got to spend three weeks with us.



We also had the joy of hosting our Pastor, Todd Abbey and Shane Brown for five days. While they were here we went on a boat ride on the lake. It is always a peaceful ride with the sun setting and casting beautiful hues across the sky and water.