Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Visiting my kiddos in Uganda

2 years later, it’s time for me to bring this blog full-circle.

Re-wind to June 2009.

After 10 months of being on tour with the Children of the World (COTW) kids…after 39,000 miles of driving on a bus together....after visiting 160 different cities/churches...after thousands of priceless memories, it was time to let them go. It was time for them to return to their children’s homes in Uganda and Nepal.

The months to follow were extremely emotional for me, as I missed them so much. This is an excerpt from an email I wrote to a friend:

"I keep expecting to look out the window and see the kids running around....or to hear their laughter and footsteps as they come running toward me. But that's not reality, unfortunately...my heart aches as I miss the kids...my heart literally hurts (to the point of actually being able to feel it...)"

But this story has a happy ending! Little did I know that God would lead me to Uganda THE FOLLOWING YEAR to be a missionary for 1 year…and get this, my apartment was only one hour from Destiny (the children’s home where 7 of my COTW kids live!)

I visited Destiny twice. As I look at these photos again, I am blown away by how God has blessed me with the experiences I had with these beautiful kids. They have taught me so much about loving people, joy and laughter, and God. And if you scroll back a few entries on this blog, you can see how much they’ve grown up since 2008; it’s crazy! They’re now about 11 and 12 years old.

I hope you enjoy these photos from both visits to Destiny. (And sidenote: the purpose of the US choir tour was to raise money for Destiny. I got goosebumps when I saw the new dorms, etc that were built at Destiny because of people’s generous giving during the choir tour! Wow.)

August 2010: Unfortunately, Martin was in class so he’s missing from this photo. But those are the Destiny kids who were on my COTW team 2008-2009!

As we drove away, these faces wished us farewell.

April 2011:
My friend, Josh, traveled on a different COTW team.
He came to Uganda for a week to visit his kids at Destiny.
silly gooses! (Jimmy and Gift)
Lincoln has grown up so much. He is a true gentleman and so sweet.
Are these girls the cutest or what?! (Zurufah is top row, 3rd from the left. Rose is bottom row, 2nd from the right.) It was amazing for me to see how close the kids at Destiny are. Truly like family.
Martin is incredibly bright. He wants to be a doctor one day. He was definitely the “leader” of the choir tour…love him.
Zurufah…doesn’t she look so much older? Precious.
Random kids took a break from washing their clothes to pose for my camera

I truly do hold out hope that I can return again to visit them one day.
So until then...