Check out the link above for our newest Hope of Life newsletter where I took some time to reflect back on all that we have overcome in the past year since we started Hope of Life. A long way left to go but so much better off than we were before. Want more info? Check out our website, www.newhopeoflifefoundation.org
Times of transition and change never seem to get easier for me, no matter how old I become. Don’t get me wrong, I am not opposed to change, but I must admit I love having a routine. I know it seems crazy that I actually crave a routine and normal life at times but I truly do. Nothing about my life over the past nearly two years has been “normal” or “routine” and although I wouldn’t change my life for anything, I have reached a point in life where I want to settle down and try to stabilize the life I have.
Everyone wants security, stability, and the sense of belonging. I dream of the days when life will be “simple”. The days when I can come home from work, eat supper, relax, kiss my husband good night, and fall asleep without a worry in the world. Sometimes I wonder if those days will ever come. The days when I won’t have to worry about how we are going to feed the 24 Hope of Life kids and keep them in school because there will be enough. The days when I won’t spend my evenings planning how we will raise funds and awareness for the organization and the kids’ needs. The days when we will look back on these times and smile because we know that these are the times and experiences that have stretched us, molded us, and changed us into the people that God is calling us to be.
So, bring on this new chapter in our life because as much as I dislike transitions, I know that God has me “under construction” and there is no better place to be then in His hands.
I am once again asking for your help as we need to start collecting money for the next school term for the kids. Our financial situation is very unstable due to all this transition and we really need your help in providing for the kids’ food and rent for this month. Please consider donating at www.newhopeoflifefoundation.org/donate
I like Nazifa’s attitude in this one…hands on her hips and all :)
Love these little ones! Yasin, the boy in the dark shirt, has made a full recovery from an asthma attack a couple months ago. I am so thankful that he is doing better now and able to play and have fun again!
How different my life could be. I was talking with a dear friend of mine a few weeks ago and found myself laughing and truly amused by the life I have been given to live. Sometimes I find myself thinking about others in their mid-twenties who are finishing up grad school, landing great paying jobs, getting married, buying a perfect house with a nice car in the driveway and an adorable dog or cat sitting in the window. Believe me, I want that life and to an extent, I am starting to work towards that life. Sometimes I wonder, how has my life strayed so far from that norm? How do I put it back on track?
Then the answer hit me, my life is exactly where it is supposed to be at this moment in time. I did not choose this life, God chose this life for me because He knew I could handle it. My life will never be the “normal American dream”, not in any aspect, but I am happy to say I am ok with that. What is normal anyways?
I was talking to Zech about how stressed I am about the over $400 we still need to pay for the kids school fees for the new school term that starts in the morning, and he said the most profound thing, “Em, this is not just OUR thing because we can only do so much. This is GOD’S thing.” I needed that reminder, as I have been really down the past few weeks. I have spent hours crying to David about how stressful it is to raise our family of 26 (24 HOL kids and us) on one salary (believe me, we are barely surviving), and this is what he told me, “It is only God who knows when things will get easier for us, but we are listening to His call on our lives so He will take care of us.” Wow, I am so thankful to have such wonderful positive and Godly men in my life. Thank you God for them!
I have been reminded in the last week that the plan we have for our lives (a plan of comfortable living, a nice car, and financial security, etc.) is not always the plan that God has for our lives. Lately, I have found myself fighting God’s plan because I am too exhausted, too run down, and too financially strapped, etc. Yet, in God’s perfect timing, all will come to pass. Sometimes I just need reminded that life isn’t about our material possessions or how much money we have in our bank accounts, but what small acts of kindness we did to make another’s life more livable. So what if I don’t have the life I always dreamed? I have a better life now, because it’s the life that God always dreamed for me to have.
If you are able to help us provide for the kids’ school tuition fees, we would be so grateful. I don’t want to have to tell our beloved kids that they can’t go to school this school term because of our lack of money. We are doing our very best to provide for our kids but we need your help. www.newhopeoflifefoundation.org/donate
Happy New Year to all! I have taken some time the past few weeks to reflect on 2012. Let me tell you, 2012 had some really challenging days, but I am thankful for them, because through all the trials of the year, I found myself.
In 2012, I learned to stand up for what I believe, fight for the ones I love, and learned how important and necessary God’s presence is in my life. I found myself time and time again lifting my hands to the heavens and saying, “God, I really need your help right now.”
God answered so many of my prayers in 2012:
-The kids always had food to eat
-School fees were paid in full each term
-The kids moved to a great new house in a safe neighborhood, where they had electricity and a water spicket on the property
-Numerous cases of malaria, typhoid, flu, a case of asthma, and some more serious medical problems of one of our girls were successfully treated
-David, Zech, and I all had our share of sickness in 2012 but we are all fine now
-Our Christmas Miracle happened and our kids woke up Christmas morning in their very own bunkbeds with new sheets, malaria nets, and new mattresses
-All the kids received great report cards at the end of the school year in December and they will start the new school year January 28th
-The kids are happy, healthy, and in school, and we couldn’t be more proud of them
In 2012, I learned how to survive and flourish in Uganda. I learned that lacking power is not that big of a deal (as I lived without it for four months), basin bathing isn’t all its cracked up to be, pit latrines are not so bad, charcoal stove cooking is just fine, snakes, mice, and cockroaches are not going to kill you (had to deal with these creatures nearly every day), typhoid and malaria are no fun, especially at the same time, washing clothes by hand gets easier every time, jerricans full of water are super heavy but I have seriously toned my arm muscles by carrying them, waking up to animals right outside your window every morning is surprisingly soothing, makeup is not needed to make you beautiful, your heart makes you beautiful, cross busy streets with confidence and you will be fine, always get the window seat on the bus, having a lot of stuff or clothes is overrated, but most of all, be open to whatever God brings your way.
Most importantly, I learned how to be a sister/mother to our 24 Hope of Life kids, a loving and supportive wife, a stepmom, a lover of life, a little less of a worrier, a little more patient, a caregiver, a cook, a provider, and myself.
Here’s to a New Year full of new opportunities, challenges, and adventures!
Want to help the Hope of Life kids go to school this term? Make a donation at www.newhopeoflifefoundation.org.
Here’s to health, happiness, and hope for the new year!
Yesterday, along with so many other people, I wept. I wept for the innocent children who lost their lives, I wept for the parents who lost their precious children, I wept for the families who lost their mothers or fathers, I wept for the community of Newtown, CT, a community that will never forget and never fully move past the tragedy that occurred there, I wept for the young man who committed this horrifying crime, I wept for all the children who will never truly feel safe entering a classroom again, I wept for teachers and administration who will now be a little less comfortable inside their classrooms across the world, but most of all I wept for the shattered dreams of so many: children, parents, siblings, teachers, the community, and our world.
I found myself doubting if humanity really cared about the dreams of others for about ten seconds. Then I was reminded of all those who have been donating, praying for, and loving (from afar) the Hope of Life kids. People who care about making the dreams of children they don’t even know come true. Kind hearted individuals who are helping to provide the Hope of Life kids with a special Christmas celebration by providing them with beds, mattresses, sheets, bed nets, new shoes, new cooking ware, and most importantly a new perspective on the world. Yes, the new beds and mattresses are truly answered prayers for the kids but the most wonderful gift they will receive this Christmas is knowing that people do care about them, they are special, and most importantly, they are LOVED. Thank you, thank you, thank you for loving the children that are so close to my heart. Thank you for believing in their dreams and valuing their futures. Thank you for bowing your heads and saying a prayer for the kids asking God to protect and guide them always. Most of all, thank you for reminding me that humanity consists of so.many wonderful souls that truly care about helping others to achieve their dreams. My faith in humanity was shaken by the tragedy that occurred yesterday, but you have reminded me that this world is full of compassionate and kind people.
This world needs Jesus. Thank you for helping us be Jesus to our kids this Christmas (and every day). I know God smiles when His people stand together for something good. Thank you for standing together for our children, their dreams, and futures.
There is still time to make a Christmas donation for the kids. www.newhopeoflifefoundation.org.
We still need a few more donations in order to purchase their mattresses and Christmas day meal. Thanks to your generosity, all the other items on the kids’ wish list have been purchased. Thank you for investing in the lives of the future leaders of tomorrow. Thank you for renewing my hope in humanity. Feeling so very blessed in this moment.