Sunday, November 23, 2008

Doing only what "He" can do.

Our Sweet Bennett is home from the hospital. Praise God all is well. As you can see this is not a photo of a sick child. Once again we give thanks to the Great Physician for doing only what He can do.
Bennett under went many tests, to see what damage has been done due to the syphilis, he was given a clean bill of health and no harm has come to him. Praise God !
Satan has tried to steal this child from the moment of conception, and yet our heavenly Father has protected him. Bennett has a calling on his life and work to do to further the kingdom of God. At such a young age he already has a great testimony.
At last I have my entire family under one roof. We have so much to be thankful for this year. Truly "My Cup Runs Over".
Bless you all for the many prayers that have been said on our behalf. They have been felt throughout this entire process.
My prayer in return is that the Lord will bless you and keep you, make his face to shine upon you.
More to come, but at this moment exhaustion has set in and my brain can't seem to think anymore.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bennett in hospital :(

Sorry it has taken me so long to blog about our joyous homecoming but my life has been anything but normal since arriving back in America.
I took Bennett to see his pediatrician on Thursday for a routine check up, I wanted him to been seen by his own doctor so we could establish a baseline. All seemed well, she thought he was a healthy handsome boy.
On Friday morning she called and said after reviewing his records from Uganda she felt as though they had treated the symptoms for congenital syphilis but had not treated the disease. She wanted him admitted right away to Children's hospital in Dallas.
We spent the first couple of days with one test after another being ran. They took more blood from him than I thought one human body could hold, did a lumbar puncture to check for traces in his spinal fluid, a number of x-rays were taken and the end result was syphilis was still present.
On Sunday evening they started IV penicillin, the treatment will last for ten days. So once again I am away from home and away from my children. Though it may sound like I'm complaining I'm not. I am grateful to God for such a wonderful doctor who took the time to read the almost unreadable medical charts and make the right call. But I would be lying if I said I was not disappointed at being away from Colt, Haley and Hannah again.
Bennett is doing well, he has received the best care possible. They have determined though he still has syphilis the high numbers are probably from the antibodies he received from his birth mother. Speaking of Monica, please keep her in your prayers as well. We are trying to figure out how we can get her retested and help her receive the proper treatment she needs.
Bennett is growing like a weed and is starting to recognize faces, the kids came to the hospital last night to see him and his eyes just lit up. He entertained them for well over an hour. He has learned how to scream with a huge smile on his face and then watch the crowd roar with laughter.
We have had several doctors and nurses not assigned to him stop by the room to meet the infamous Bennett. He has such a sweet spirit that attracts people. I had one young girl stop me in the hall and ask if she could take a picture of him with her cell phone. God has a plan for this baby.
Glenda has been a life saver, she jumped right back into the mode of caring for my family....bless her I know she is tired and ready to "Just" be Nanny again. Breanna came to the hospital today so I could come home see my family and rest. Angie, after a full days work came to spend the night with him so I could sleep through the night. Mom has been sick so she is feeling a little left out at the moment, she has only been able to spend a few hours with him since he has been home....don't worry mom your time is coming.
I have the most amazing family in the world, Bennett has no idea how blessed he is.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers and pray Bennett gets to come home soon. Thanksgiving is right around the corner and boy do I have alot to be thankful for this year.
Will post again as we receive more info.


Sunday, November 9, 2008

They're Home :)

:) yay! There home! I am so Excited, I haven't seen my Mom in a long time! I am in an aww with Bennett. He is so Adorable I can't believe that he is my "Little Brother" wow! Every time one of my friend's asks who I am with I will say my brother, hannah, mom and dad..[pause] oh and Bennett it's so weird. :)
God has Blessed us so much!! I can't even explain how Good our God has been to us! I have taken care of Bennett alot! I feel like a mom! :) The first day he got home we already had him laughing. He lovesss to smile :).I think when he gets old Hannah and I are going to dress him up in girl clothes and put make up on him! haha :) He will look so cute! Bennett is just so amazing and I LOVE him so much I am just so excited I can' even explain it. My Mom and Dad are so amazing I know they hurt too. I am just so glad I have "strong Faithful parent's I Love you :) Your so Good to Me Hannah and Colton I know that Bennett will feel the same way. I Love Bennett so Much He is so much fun to play with :) He lights up the whole house. I thought it was going to be so hard to share my mom and dad at first but I think I could get used to it! I am so Glad my mom is home, My brother, sister, my dad and my self have gone through alot since my mom has been gone! We all stayed in Prayer the whole time! I don't think all three of us kids.. haha four of us kid's could live with-out or Mom or Dad! My parent's are the Best! God gave us kid's the Best parent's and family in the world. I know me and my parents cant even explain how much we thank every body for keeping us in there prayers! You guys helped get them back home with my little brother :) I also just ask that you keep Francis in your prayers he is still waiting for a Family :(. I want him so bad. I know that God will put him were he wants him though :). Thank you for everything y'all have done :)
Mom,Dad and Bennett I am glad your home and safe :)

Love Haleyy <3

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Time for me to FLY !!!!!!

It's a go, VISA in hand and headed to the airport.........It's time for "US" to fly.
We love you all and will see you real soon.

Sher, Bennett, and Bre

Monday, November 3, 2008

Leavin on a Jet Plane !!!!!

What an awesome God we serve.......we are coming home !!!!!! I have waited so long to write this blog. It's funny because I have layed in bed at night and thought about what I would like to say when the time comes and now I don't know how to put it into words. Well it's here we got the VISA and we are coming home.
God granted us such favor with all whom we came in contact with today. We started out very early this morning at the lawyers office getting final affidavit signed by Monica and then it had to be notarized. Left there and headed to DHL office to pick up documents that we needed to make this day possible, and wouldn't you know it, the documents were there waiting on me.
From there we traveled to the Embassy, where my heart pounded and I just continued to pray for favor. Mr.Flook looked at all our documents, had me raise my right hand and swear to the best of my knowledge these documents were true and correct. Thank God they were..... next he called Monica in for questioning, she was amazing as always, answered questions as best she could. The last thing I remember hearing him say is I will call you tomorrow and tell you what time you can pick up your VISA.
I could not get to the car quick enough to call Scott. He was very excited but half asleep, when I spoke with him a bit ago he was wondering if he had been dream babe we're coming home.
I am so grateful to all of you who have shared in this process with us. So many of you have done so much, from helping with the kids, to praying, to flying over to be with me. Bridgett and Bre I honestly would not have come out of this sane without you two. Dan and Matt thank you for sharing your wives with me, I know it wasn't easy.
Glenda and Cecil thank you for the countless hours you have spent with my children making sure there life stayed as "normal" as possible. Glenda thank you for all the work you have done in Bennett's room, can't wait to see it. Mom, thank you for all the money you have sent to keep me functioning daily....I think you and Glenda are probably getting close to spending as much on this adoption as Scott and I have. :) You know I love you and I will pay yall back (wink).......Mom thanks for the many calls in the middle of the night to cheer me up......I hope I never hear "Get Over It" again..........I cried while I ate the many bags of candy you sent, I think I have gained about 10 pounds since I have been here.
I am also so grateful to all wo have sent emails and blogged, you will NEVER know what those meant to me. I hung on every word, your messages are what I looked forward to everyday. This computer has been my life line.
Scott, Colt, Haley and Hannah thank you for your sacrifice's, I know it has not been easy on any of you. But I praise God for the beautiful family He has blessed me with.........Bennett is well worth it. Kids get ready for your heart to be captured.
Most of all thank you Pastor Dickson and Glady's (Abwooli), without you none of this would have been possible. Because of your obedience to God and your sharp ear to hear and to respond, my family has been forever blessed. My son is alive and coming to America. I love you two and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Not much more I can say but...........Leavin on a Jet Plane..............see you Wednesday at 2:00.

Much Love
Sherry and Bennett

Sunday, November 2, 2008

"Good Morning! How Are Ya'll? "

Where do I even begin this time? Bennett will have plenty of stories to cling on to once he is old enough to understand them and I believe he will appreciate them very much. I laugh inside while writing this because all these thoughts and memories of the day are coming back to me as I am trying to translate them. No doubt was today an ultimate blessing for Sher and I.

We had a divine appointment last night with Pastor's friend, Joshua. He is only 24, the same age as me- to tell you that he is wise beyond his years is an understatement. The man puts me to shame when talking about the Lord and revealing his faith. I have never met a young person like him that is so on fire for our God. He is an inspiration to us and was meant to feed us the word last night. We spent hours talking about the Lord and his people...and more importantly we were invited to attend his church this morning.

Sher and I were so excited to be going to church---I hadn't attended church in who knows how long and we both needed to be filled with God's love and word. The adventure began at 9:30am as soon as we walked out of the front gate. Let me first tell you that Sher and I stayed up till 2am taking a bath and fixing our hair ...had to look good for Jesus. We were blessed with electricity this morning....straightened our hair and did the big Texas tease on top...sprayed it with Aussie Freeze hairspray and we were out the door. Now picture this...Sher in a long dress and heels in the same attire except for a shorter skirt...sportin our hairdos and walking out thinking we were lookin good. No sooner did we get out that front gate did it begin to pour down rain! We had to walk a little under a half a mile to the taxi stop...with Bennett in hand and me busting out the umbrella (good idea Matt), we really began to think if we were meant to go to church. All we had to do was walk right back to the house...but something told us that the Devil was just trying to steal our joy! Getting to the taxi stop was no problem and finding one was easier than that...I am talkin two taxis almost colliding to see who could get the Mzungu's first. Mind you...this is NO PRIVATE TAXI...we are talkin bout a mini van and Ugandans all piled in...NOT TO MENTION...UGANDANS DON'T LIKE THE RAIN! Sherry sat behind me with Ben while I got the privilege to have a Ugandan actually sit right on top of me----and now it gets fun!

Here we are least we are out of the rain and now we can just ride! OH NO NO NO NO NO....our taxi driver decides that he is gonna pull off the road and kick all of us out---he doesn't want to take us to church. I am talking full on MONSOON in Kampala and the man wants to kick us out of the van???? AND...WE FIXED OUR HAIR...SERIOUSLY?!?!?! As we piled out of the van, I did my best to usher Sherry and Ben but the water coming off the streets was a rushing river filled with things I'd rather not think about! PURE MUDDY WATER on my favorite pair of heels....OH YES...I could have cried! Poor Joshua was apologizing and bought another umbrella (with money that he probably did not have) ---Sherry and I just looked at each other and kept movin. We had to find another taxi---here in Kampala when it rains; it seems that the whole world stops. Everyone runs to a covering and here we were having to cross the road...DIRT ROAD...MUDDY RIVER ROAD with our heels, Sher's long dress, carrying Bennett, me holding the umbrella and bible in hand! Lets just say that the umbrellas were point less---Our hair that we thought looked so GOOD....wasn't lookin that way no more. To say the least we were soaked!

Joshua got us into another taxi---I piled into the back by a window. I think God placed me there for a reason. I will honestly say that I was upset, frustrated and couldn't believe that we were in the middle of all this. I started to ask God to clear it up but all I heard back was "be quiet"! So, I sat there...rubbed the fog off the window and watched the people passing by. That is when it hit me---as I watched women and children in their Sunday best...with NO UMBRELLAS crossing the muddy river road still walking with bibles in their hand; I knew then that it wasn't the devil trying to do anything. It was God---he was teaching me an important lesson, one that I would not have learned if I hadn't been on the stinking taxi with the pouring rain and my favorite shoes ruined! I heard it clear as glass..."If these people can walk for miles in the rain...if these people can take taxi after taxi...then surely you can get your butt out of bed and go to church!" BAM, was a ton of bricks right on my lap!

What do you say? How do you respond? The Lord just kicked me in the behind and woke me up from the dead. I complain how tired I am on Sundays---or how I don't have anything to wear....SOME OF THESE PEOPLE HAVE NO SHOES! Can we say all together now...WAKE UP CALL!

We did make it to the church...and as relieved as we were to be sitting down...we were a little nervous being in a true African church service. It took place under a restaurant in a small room with plastic patio chairs and a long folding table as the pulpit. No electricity for quite some time and service had not started yet...many were delayed because of the rain storm. Joshua decided to lead the ones already there into praise and worship...the man can usher in the holy ghost like no other! Once the others arrived the service extravagant instruments--just voices and a keyboard. So service starts and of course Sher and I are the only mzungus in the place...and OF COURSE they want us to come up and speak. Here I am...taking one for the team and I take the microphone! know what is coming next! I am assuming due to nerves my Texas accent decided to come full throttle---and I blurt out with the biggest smile on my face..."Gooood Mornin! HOW ARE YA'LL? (imagine with a Texas twang)". I so wanted to insert my foot in mouth---I sounded like the biggest redneck. WHO says that? REALLY?

Here I am all the way in Africa and I make a fool of Sherry and I have laughed about that since we left the church---she said I sounded like one of the girls right off the movie "Steel Magnolias"! I will say that they enjoyed our company because they have asked us to come back tomorrow evening and preach...

What an amazing blessing and calling---God has asked us to share a word. We will do just that!

BEEP BEEP BEEP....WE INTERRUPT THIS PROGRAM FOR AN IMPORTANT MESSAGE....BEEP BEEP BEEP..........................................................................

Tomorrow is our appointment with the embassy. Monica will be with us and we pray that our DHL package arrives in the morning like they have told us. Sherry and I have already packed our belongings...we will be going home on Tuesday night! We are running this race with endurance and won't give up till we get to the finish line. Keep us in your prayers. Our Bennett is so beautiful and is getting bigger by the day. Bennett and I share the early morning time together---I get to see his smiles and giggles...that early morning joy just radiates out of him. I can't wait for you to see him. We love you.


Saturday, November 1, 2008

God's Ultimate Test and Sense of Humor! We Will Run The Race With Endurance That He Has Set Before Us!

Here we are as the Rat has just set forth an attack! We are in the Dining Room Chairs!

It is Saturday morning on this beautiful day in Kampala---but to say the least we aren't lookin so beautiful! Seems today you could stick a fork in us and call us DONE! God is putting us through the ultimate test this week ---and he must have a sense of humor while doing it.

I'll start from the beginning:
Once upon a time in NEVER NEVER LAND (Kampala), we received our passport approval on Monday and while being on cloud 9 decided to get our VISA at the Embassy! Quickly our Cloud 9 became a puff of smoke when we found out what we original signature from Scott on the I600 petition, a tax form and for Monica to be seen in person by Nathan Flook. Talk about your world falling apart in 2.5 seconds---we jumped the ball though and decided that its in the bag no matter what. Worked fast at getting what we needed! Scott sent out form Monday morning by DHL with knowledge we would receive it by Friday at the latest! problem there. Then favor again when calling Monica to find out that she was going to be able to visit us because she had a break from exams on Thursday and Friday...WAHOO...really feeling the glory! Sherry and I pack up our bags to take a small vacay to Jinja considering everything was lined up and we couldn't do much for the next two days. What a way to celebrate! We arrive home on Wednesday afternoon and expect Monica to be arriving Thursday evening so we can get to the Embassy Friday morning at 7am. Wake up on Thursday with the news that there was a miscommunication---Monica's days off were actually Wednesday and Thursday...Friday she had her last exam. SERIOUSLY?!?! In panic mode we decided that as long as we had the form we could still go to our appointment and get Monica to the Embassy Monday morning. We praised the Lord anyway and stepped out on faith ---Sherry and Bennett scheduled their airline tickets for Tuesday, Nov. 4th. We were beyond blessed while scheduling the tickets , our travel agent, was a christian and gave us discounts on both tickets! We talked about the Lord and left there feeling on fire! Again our butts were burned when arriving at DHL to find out that our package was still at Heathrow/London airport but was told to have no fear that the package should be here late Fri. afternoon or Saturday morning---I believe the Lord is trying to show us that HE has ALL control and for us to step back and let him take over! To say the least we didn't meet with the Embassy---and here we are on this Saturday morning praying and believing once again!

Monica is here and she is exactly what I dreamt...its amazing to see this beautiful woman in the flesh! I know beyond a doubt that God has a plan for her life. To see her wearing my clothes was very humbling and then to hear her say thank you was beyond words. Lord, bless her and keep her safe---give her what her heart desires if it is your will.

We have called DHL once again this morning (Sat) to hear the words, "Your package has not yet arrived and has just left the UK yesterday evening", WHAT?!? ..."Package should arrive in Ettebbe this evening and be at our office on Monday morning before 9am". Sherry cried and I think I laughed inside....I wouldn't recommend DHL to anyone unless this is just God's way of making us sit back and throw our hands up in the air. I have no doubt that the Lord will give us our fairy tale ending---if He can bring us through it, He will see us through it! Amen and Amen.

All this brings us back to our wonderful bedroom in Kampala, with me sitting on the bed writing this tale of ALL What a story this will be for our Bennett--I will tell you that Sherry and I have gotten a word from the Lord. It was presented through email from the daily devotional of R.W. Schambach:

Hold On! (Pt. 2)
Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” (Hebrews 12:1c)
You are a part of something that is going to last for eternity. This is no vacation romance that is going to dry up when summer goes, or when the snow flies. This thing is going to last forever and forever, and it's going to produce some gold at the end!
The road may get rugged, and the trials may come. You may seem to be outnumbered. The devil may be telling that you can't win. But hold on! Help is on the way. Victory is yours. Deliverance is right around the corner. Greater is He that is on your side than all those who are against you!
So hang in there! If you'll keep your chin up and hold your peace, the Lord will fight on your behalf, and victory shall be yours!
You've already come too far to turn around now! You've got too much invested in it to sit down! It’s time to move out of the valley of despair, and get to the mountaintop. It's time to rise up BY FAITH and claim the promises of God!
It is one thing to have a desire to win, even to feel a determination to win. It's something else entirely to get out there and RUN!
So don't let go. Hold on! Keep the prize in sight and keep running the race. Don't let anything deter you. Don't let anything stop you.

It seems as though the Lord is speaking right to us--- "Unto whomsoever much is given, of him much shall be required." (Luke 12:48)

I will leave you some funnies:

1) The RAT is back...and it almost got Sherry's feet while we were eating last night. Talk about pee my pants and jump into a chair in record speed!
2) We have ANTS...just on my side of the bed---seems that they like my toes and love Ben's leg! Obviously they don't think Sherry is all that sweet...hasn't got a bite on her yet!
3) I sat and ate dinner the other night. To say the least I couldn't eat another bite of food, I was so full but was almost in tears thinking about the phrase our lovely parents love to use "YOU KNOW THERE ARE STARVING CHILDREN IN AFRICA" could I not take another bite. Here I am in Africa complaining about how full I really hit home for me. I will never take that phrase lightly again. Thanks mom and dad. lol.

Again...I write a book. Continue to pray---we will see you on Wednesday the 5th in Jesus Mighty Name.

We love you.