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Sunday, October 11, 2015

Weeks Gone By... Happy Thanksgiving

I am in my sitting room, with six children running around - laughing, singing, and playing.  I'm struggling to find a good time to write a few stories and fill you in on my life.  Rains come more often now days, which really disturb power supply, and the other day my internet package expired, so I had to wait a few days. 
The past two weeks have been a crazy journey of government paperwork.  Two Monday's ago I took the bus to Kampala and spent the whole next day sitting in the Revenue office... because my file is so messed up and all of my information is incorrect... and the government thinks I own a car dealership in Kampala and they want me to pay income tax.  We started the process of cleaning my file, and the rest, they said, could be done on-line or in the Soroti office.  Then I went over to immigration office and picked up the form for renewing my work permit.  Wednesday, I took the bus back to Soroti - in time to have a great Bible study with Oil of Gladness. 
This past Monday, I again had to go back to Kampala because the online process is not user friendly and the Soroti office said they were unable to help.  Tuesday, by 10 am I was in the revenue office and it took a meeting with 6 different people before I got to a place where I feel like my paperwork is straightened up.  I really want to have a clean file with the government here.  I respect their authority and laws, and so I want to make sure that everything is legally correct.  The paperwork now states that I am a volunteer missionary and I think my old income tax files have been cleared.
From there I went back to Immigration, but first I had to bring my thick file to the NGO board.  It took another 3 hours, but I was finally handed a slip of paper to say that they would accept my file.  As soon as it is approved I can bring it to the immigration office to apply for a work permit renewal.  My permit expires on November 14th - please pray for a government approval/blessing!!
I have been having fun sharing God's Word at Grace Hill Nursery and Primary School.  Even parents stay for the morning assembly to hear a Bible story and I pray that the stories and their meanings sink deep in to their hearts.
Yesterday I sat with 18 leaders from the local Anglican church, and I was the secretary for the meeting, as we started planning the youth conference for December.  It will be a lot of work and officially I will be the treasurer for the conference. I'm super pumped to be a part of the ministry again this year.
Today my family in Canada will be gathering for Canadian Thanksgiving and I'm going to miss the celebration.  It has honestly been a hard year for me, so I'm not even throwing any kind of celebration, but I do want to thank the Lord for the many blessings and lessons of this past year.
I am thankful for:
  • having great friends here in Soroti
  • seeing kids ministry shape and grow here in Teso
  • being able to know my Grandpa Lubbers for 38 years and I'm grateful that I could be home with the family during his funeral
  • saying good-bye to International Teams after 5 years of awesome support and encouragement
  • signing on with Global Outreach Mission and getting to know their diligent staff
  • experiencing financial struggles - it's a gentle reminder that I still have more than many of the people I live and work with here in Uganda
  • donors who continue to support me through finances, prayers, packages, and love
  • enemies who help me hold on to the robes of Jesus
  • God's Word - as it's a Light unto my Path
  • being pruned
  • the opportunity to fly
  • internet, power, running water - even if there are times they are not working :)
  • food - and the ability to teach others how to bake, make pizza, and enjoy smoothies
  • my awesome neighbours
  • for God's grace and mercy
  • a voice to speak and sing
  • a vehicle to carry people
  • a computer - to communicate with loved ones everywhere
  • children - who brighten my day
  • and so much more
Happy Canadian Thanksgiving!!

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