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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

My Eyes Have Seen and My Ears Have Heard



There is so much to share, but I have a feeling I will not do any of it justice ...

My precious Joseph and Daisy are doing so well ... The judge was there so court was a success ... We will receive our verbal ruling on April 23rd (coming home on the 16th) and will return when all the paper work is filed, passport is ready and consulate appointment is made (probably around May 5th or so) ... I can't tell you how hard it is to leave them each night ... They cry for me and I cry as I walk out of the gate ... They are w/out a doubt Oatsvall's ... Joseph loves to dance to the ipod and Daisy walks around singing or humming a tune ... They are so funny and love to have me chase them around ANY AND EVERYWHERE ... The trips to Kampla have been hard on them as they are so ultra stimulanted easily !!! I can't wait for them to come home and meet their Daddy (Daisy asks for him each day) and their brothers / sisters !!! So please continue to pray for all of our hearts as we continue this journey to bring our precious children home ...

Now on to Katie's ... WOW, where to begin - in just the few shorts days of being here I have meet and touched sweet JaJa Grace (see Katie's blog about her) and moved her to a new home ... As she rubbed my arm, tears just came down my face .... She is a precious God fearing, God loving elderly woman, who is lame, blind, and has HIV .... Katie has been taking care of her until we moved her to live w/ her niece ... Her eyes had a sparkle in them and I keep asking myself why with the hard, lonely life she has been living ! The answer is quite simple though ... SHE LOVES JESUS ...

We took all our children to church Easter Sunday ( yep, 17 children ... the Hannah's and Bobby went also) ... After church we headed to Renee's for the day ... She is another young woman changing the world one life at a time ... She runs a home for babies dying of starvation ... She brings them into her home and helps them to gain weight, get healthy and educates their mothers ... When they are at the right birth weight they go home ... I held, loved, cuddle and cried over Beckem and Sarah that day as Joseph and Daisy played w/ all the kids in the yard ... These angels were 14 months and 18 months old weighing about 8lbs each  ... I just walked outside as I cried and called Scott ... I was so emotionally overwhelmed by being w/ Joseph and Daisy, taking JaJa Grace to church and then holding these babies that I just couldn't hold it in ...

A huge highlight of my days is hanging w/ Katie's girls ... They sing in the van, give amazing hugs, and their sweet sweet accent is to die for ... They all pitch in around the house and let me tell you it takes all of them to keep this ship running ... Dinner time is comical !!!! I am proud to be their Auntie !!!

Tomorrow I will be going to visit the Karamojong women who make the necklaces we sell at 147millionorphans.com  ... I feel like it will be the trip of a lifetime ... I can't wait plus we will be visitng the feeding program for the children ... I just keep praying for God to teach me all He has for me and to keep my heart focused on Him ... To say I have seen poverty is an understatement ... I am not sure I could ever process it all, but I know if we all do something then God will take it and use it for His glory !!!

Katie (plus Tyler !!! who rocks) is truly making a difference and not just in the feeding, teaching, and helping, but in the hearts of the people in Uganda ...

I have enjoyed getting to know the Amani staff, volunteers, and mamas ... Walking in each day to pick up Joseph and Daisy is the highlight of my day !!! They run to me w/ big smiles and grab my hand to go ... Not sure if they truly are in love w/ me yet or just want to go get a Fanita drink !!!! hee hee ... I know I have kissed them about a million times and I pray God shows their heart how much I love them and how excited I am for them to come home !!!

Big Huge Shout Out to my main man !!!! Scott thank you for always saying the right thing when I call or text ... You are my ROCK in this world and I apprecaite you holding the fort down w/ Nana (who also ROCKS).... Miss you Jeremiah, Elijah, Emily, and Maggie !!!

More tomorrow !!!

45 kind words.:

Katie Dunlap said...

It's SOOO good to get an update from you, Gwen! I've been thinking about you and praying for you everyday. Joseph and Daisy are just precious, and I couldn't be happier for your family! So glad to hear that court went well.

redmaryjanes said...

SO HAPPY FOR YOU!

emily said...

I am full for the moment, miss you like crazy!!!

Love on them from their Texas family. :)

Mom to 9 Blessings! said...

AMAZING!

Simply beautiful!

Just like our God to bless your socks off!

Praying for you and Katie. Praying for your family at home. Give Katie a hug from all of us!

Lots of love,
Jill

Janet said...

Blessings to you sweet lady.

Your family is Heavenly and will be even more once you get the next 2 children safe at home.

Love,

Janet
www.homewrd4.blogspot.com

Mama D.'s Dozen said...

So good to hear from you! Glad your time has been BLESSED beyond measure.

I cannot imagine how difficult it will be to leave the children ... to return a month or so later. When we brought our children home from Ghana, they were just handed off to us on the first day ... we were on our own ... and we finally brought them home 6 weeks later. That wasn't easy, either.

Praying for you! Wish I could minister alongside Katie ... wish I could love on her girls ...

Laurel :)

Holly said...

I can only imagine my friend.
Oh the wonders God is doing...and the love He has for us all...around the world...separated by time, distance, language, customs, borders...but NEVER by HIS LOVE!
He will give you the grace to let them go for a few weeks until they are home FOREVER AND EVER!!
Love,
Holly

Beth said...

You are all in my thoughts and prayers! It's so wonderful to see the photos of you with your children...it brought a smile to my face and tears of happiness to my eyes! You inspire me! Give Joseph & Daisy extra hugs and kisses (if it's even possible to give them more)!!! May God's Blessings continue to rain down on you! ;)

Renee Click said...

Wow what an update!!!! I sit here with tears flowing, I can't begin to imagine all you have seen and witnessed! I know your trip will continue to be wonderful! Pick me out some more "BIG" bead necklaces!hee..hee... Look forward to more updates! I will keep the prayers coming! Love ya!
Renee

ASH said...

Wow. Can't wait to hear more. HE is moving!

Kim K. said...

I'm thoroughly touched by your posts, Gwen. What an amazing journey. Katie is truly a miracle. Your kids are just precious. Hugs.

connie said...

Gwen, I'm loving your updates! I can't imagine leaving your babies each night. I'm praying for you, Sister!
Love~

mjohnson said...

So thankful to be following your journey. Thanks for taking the time to blog for us. Praying for every min. of every day in Uganda with your children. Praying to follow in your footsteps one day. So much love for you sista!!

Sarah Ward said...

Beautiful pictures of you with your babies!! Praying for you and your family each day...much love.

sarah ward

Charlie said...

That first picture is ADORABLE! I have nothing else to say because it says it all!

Blessed Mom of Four, Now Five said...

Wow! What a precious photo of you with Daisy.
I can't wait to see more of what the LORD is doing in Uganda.

You will be coming home on the same day we will see our Caleb graduating from Boot Camp. We'll both be in tears!

Blessings from south Georgia,
Robbie

Kim said...

Covered in chills.

Cari said...

such an amazing post to read, and I can imagine how emotionally draining it all must be for you, and to process it all...well that could take a lifetime I'm sure! Praise God for you being able to be there with your babies and for all the ministries going on there. Reading Katie's posts always inspire me to do more for God!!

Erica said...

So so happy to read this. Absolutely beautiful to hear a wee bit about how things are going. Continued prayers for you and the rest of your precious family.

Anonymous said...

Gwen,

I am sure you are deeply overwhelmed with all you have seen and done so far. The picture with your precious new little ones is priceless. You are all so BLESSED to have each other and really these little ones have no idea what a blessing they are in for to be a part of your amazing family.
We are all praying for you and your family here. You do have a rock of a hubby to do all he is doing!
God is going to continue to equip you with all that you need to be the hands and feet of Him. I am sure your smile and hugs are giving so much LOVE to everyone.
Can't even imagine all you are getting to see and do. Am sure Katie is loving having you there with her.
Gwen, I am so proud of you. Keep your eyes so fixed that you cannot go anywhere but to Jesus!

I love you! LIsa

TanyaLea said...

Wow, Gwen...everything I am reading it so amazing. God is doing big things over there, and it's wonderful to see you and Katie and others who allow themselves to be vessels that He is working through. To him be all glory!

And tears here as I see those sweet, sweet babies in your arms. Both Joseph and Daisy are beautiful children, and I'm certain they have turned your mama heart to mush!! The photo of you nose to nose with little Daisy is so precious. I pray also that they learn quickly how deeply they are loved. Thank you for allowing us along on your journey. Such a blessing! <><

BIG HUGS,
~Tanya

Steffie B. said...

Tears of joy streaming down my face girl.....I can't wait to see you HOME with them....and I have no doubt that this is your journey of a life time!

hugs...
Steffie

Amy said...

Praising God that court went well. You know I've got you covered in prayer sister! Talk to you when you get home! Love you and give Joseph and Daisy a big kiss from us.

Williford Family said...

Luv luv luv the pic of you & daisy touching foreheads as her sweet hands touch your hair!!! I can hear your heart break as I picture you walking out the gate each night! I pray you feel the arms of jesus wrapped around you as you walk together!

Tisra said...

Gorgeous! Gorgeous! Gorgeous!!!

My heart is so full hearing news of the faithful works being done. It fuels the rest of us further!

Prayers for swift and favorable ruling in your case so you can bring these new sheep into the fold. (At least, that's how I felt when we went to India to get our daughter while leaving 3 kids at home... just like the farmer that left the 99 to gather the 1).

Kristy said...

Amazing! Amazing!!! Thank you for taking the time to post this and encourage my heart today!!! Praise God for all He is doing through willing hearts!

PegS said...

What a joy to share in your praises to our awesome God!! May He make your path straight.

Shawnstribe said...

Your babies are soooo precious.
Lots of prayers and hugs from us here in the UK
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
s

Rhonda said...

Hey Gwen!!!!!!

So happy to hear all your awesome words....All your dreams and the prayers of so many are coming to fruition right before our eyes, praise be to God alone! We Kemps are celebrating with you, each step of the way!! We can not wait to see you and to see them!

Pictures. We need more pictures!!!

Love and blessings to you, my sister!!!
~Rhonda

Renee said...

Oh Gwen!! This touches my heart so deeply! I am SO thankful that you are finally there, seeing, feeling, touching, tasting, smelling all that you have longed for now for so long! It IS amazing, isn't it?! And I agree...Katie's girls give the greatest hugs ever! Please give them one from Auntie Renee. Can't wait to talk to you after your visit to the Karamajong village. Love you sister! Continuing to pray!

That Fresh Feeling said...

Praying and thinking of the whole Oatsvall Team. Much love sista!

soontobemomof9 said...

Oh they are just precious! I am so happy to see you with them at last!

Leaving is SOO hard. We are still awaiting trip number 2 to Bulgaria to bring our girls home. It has been almost 3 months since I last held them. :(

I am making it only by clinging tightly to Jesus.... I dont' have anything left in ME to wait with.

Goodness and Mercy Mom said...

Dear Gwen,

I just caught up on your latest update and had a good cry. Seeing you holding Daisy and Joseph is just beautiful. Ever since I started reading your blog, those two sweet faces have been in a separate photo. Soon, your whole family will be together forever.

Prayers over you as you bond with Daisy and Joseph and minister to the people of Uganda.

God Bless,
Kathie

Faith, Hope, and Love said...

What a beautiful, beautiful sight to see your gorgeous children in your arms!!! Praying that God will smooth your path home with your babies.

Love and blessings,
Robin

Bloggin' Robin said...

Will be praying for you. We are moving toward adoption from Ghana, Africa. Love your ministry!

lisa kindred said...

Cannot quit thinking about you and all that you are doing an seeing. I pray everytime the Lord brings you to my mind. You are an amazing servant. Love you, LIsa

Again, so proud of your hubby for taking the family on like he is!!!! God is good!

Deb said...

I know your heart must be bursting.....praying for you as you are being a light to those kiddos every day that you are there. Your blog continues to be a blessing to my heart, as it sends me to my knees in prayer.

Deb :-)

Bonner Family said...

Gwen,

I am so happy that all went well in court. I'm praising God with you!! Daisy and Joseph are so darling!! God is Good!

Hugs to you!

andrea said...

gwen ive been thinking about you!!
praying for you and your precious family!

Brenda said...

So very happy for you ,Gwen, and your family.... and Katie and her fight! You stir a desire in so many to do something..anything..and I am one of them :) thank you! We are all blessed each and every day...

Jill said...

God Bless you all on your wonderful journey. I just returned home with a China girl with a CHD and a burn to her head. I was given your blog by 2 people. If you get a chance when you get home, could you email me. I would love to use you as a resource.
Thanks and God Bless your family!
Jill :)

Kristy said...

My heart is just so so happy for you!!!!! They are just beautiful!!

Love and blessings, Kristy

Mom Of Many said...

Oh Gwen,
I am so thrilled for all of you....how miraculous God is...and we praise Him with you....your babies are beautiful!! Praying you all home...xo

Jewels of My Heart said...

Praying for you and all your babies.....
God's Speed....
Love You

Kelly said...

Hi , i just visited here and love you blog !
Here also you can read one another blog to one briliant and amazing woman she serve to LORD ,too!!
She changed my life ......it is a long story please visit her here http://www.clinging2hope.blogspot.com/
Blessings from England !
~ KELLY~