This past month has been a pretty crazy one but has good. We have enjoyed being here more everyday even thought there have been some hard times woven together with the good times. I am learning so much about myself, our family, our kids are learning about themselves and life. We are all growing so much. We have learned here more than any other place that in the midst of the joys of life there are sorrows and hardships. Today though, I don’t fear the hardships because each one brings beautiful lessons and growth that shape and mild you to being a person that God has created you to be.
I have sat in the Hospital for hours upon hours this past month, with my children and Ugandan children. Sometimes it gets a bit overwhelming but God brings peace to each circumstance if I focus on Him and not on whats happening. Tyler at one this morning, was needing to be taken to the hospital, as he was having a terrible allergic reaction to something he ate, so we think. His body from the knees up was covered in hives. So off to the hospital we go. A shot of steroids, cures all. Two thirty in the morning, finally back to sleep. Smile as I know all my kids are well and sleeping sound. Just a few weeks ago Tyler wasn’t feeling well, had a fever, swollen glands that were very sore, and so in we went. You can’t mess with fevers here, you get one, you have to go in, period. Diagnosed with a bacterial infection, given meds, and sent home. Thankful results are okay this time.
Benaniah, a sick 6 month old little boy, still in the hospital after five days, meant many hours sitting by his mamma’s side while she attends her son. Staff from Tutuapona, they are our friends and family.
Oloya, a little boy, of seven, that stepped on a stick, had some remain in his foot had to be taken to the emergency room for surgery. I sat next to this smiley boy as he lay on the bed fearing what was ahead. I rubbed his back and sat with him until it was over. The nurses saying, “you love him very much”. All I could say was yes, yes I do. He has become family to us.”
A seventeen year old girl, Nancy, a sister to the little boy I was just speaking of above, has a terrible infection in her foot. Her brothers running to get me as I return from church, yelling as they approach our car, “Mama Isaac, Mama Isaac, Mama Isaac, our sister is paining and needs your help. You must come!”
Then there is Pinto, he pretty much lives here during the week, so there are many boo boo’s to fix on this active, almost two year old. This time he has ripped his pinky toe nail completely off. So outcomes the Neosporin and bandages. He limps around, as we laugh at his attempts to walk without putting his foot down. He can sure bring joy to our home.
Then there are some straight out blessings. Brianna has a girl from the states that has just arrived in Gulu. She has the same interests as Brianna so they have become quick friends. It is such a blessing for her. The boys are excited, as she has a brother they get to hang out with too. Its been a great surprise from God. Innocent, a young man, has taken Tyler under his wings and has become a good friend to him. He has been encouraging to Ty through his ups and downs.
We have walked many good and hard roads with our kids over this past six months. God is bringing our family closer together everyday. We don’t just live with our kids, we are also getting to know them on such a different level, as we have more time with them then we have had in the past. Same with Todd and I. Serving the Lord together is amazing. I have larded so much about Todd that I didn’t know. I get to see Todd, outside of his roles as father and husband and it has been amazing to see him serve the lord here. So thankful for this opportunity. We have made 17 years of marriage this August and I am excited to be celebrating it here in Uganda with him.
He is weaving our family together, our kids closer together, Todds and mine hearts closer together, all of our hearts closer to His. He is also weaving His purpose for us slowly into the picture. What a beautiful thing He is doing.
We serve a God who has asked us to give up all things for Him, like He asked so many in the bible. We could have walked away sad like the rich man, but we chose to follow him like Peter instead. He gives us the promise in Luke 18:29-30, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left his house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, who will not receive many times as much at this time and in the age to come, eternal life.” We have put our faith in His promise and will continue to serve Him here and for the rest of our lives. I think Paul says it best when he states, “Whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in the view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus, my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish (dung on the bottom of my shoe) so that I may gain Christ and may be found in Him.”
We have suffered the loss of many things as we have chosen to follow him but in the light of all the He is these things we have sacrificed are no where near as amazing as He is. So he has kept us, steadied us, loved us, encouraged us, held us while we have suffered the losses, and He restores us, forgives us and grants us true joy. For this is what keeps us going, serving, loving and honouring Him. His love is greater than all things. I am thankful for the weaving of the good times and the hard times for it makes a beautiful song. Woven together.
The Herricks Family