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Gem Village Project Trip Recap Part 2

November 11, 2017

Hello everyone,

I hope all is well!  I’m finally getting around to finishing up with this second entry on my project trip for The Gem Foundation.

Most of our time during the week consisted of long hours working on the designs for the first phase buildings and site master planning.  Even though we had to put in a lot of work, it was a great team of people to work with, and we all had a lot of fun together.  Although it took a few days for the Architecture team to come up with the building layouts, I quickly became busy with the structural design work.  The most challenging part of my work was to deal with metric units, and also make use of the materials and sizes that are readily available.  We had a great Architecture team, and they did a great job coming up with buildings that were functional, yet simple to construct.  I was grateful to have access to an EMI laptop that had the structural design software.  We were all motivated to put in the effort to get done with as much as we could during our short time together, and I’m grateful that the Lord carried us through and gave us the strength to finish our tasks.  It was great to have Emma, Josh, and Dwight spend a lot of time with our team during the week, and it was fun getting to know them and see their excitement with our designs as they progressed.

We also had the chance to go back and visit the Gem Foundation for a second time.  It was great being able to go back and reconnect with some of the kids and spend more time with them.  Before spending time with the kids, we had all the staff write words or pictures on what they think of when they think of “home”.  We combined all the responses and tried to incorporate the feedback in some of our designs.  It was neat seeing how many similarities there were, and some of the ideas people thought of.  I spent most of my time with the young pre-school aged kids upstairs.  It was great to see how much joy they had in just playing with blocks or play-doh.  Even through the challenges with their special needs, they were still able to enjoy fun activities, and the joy of Christ was evident in them.  I spent most of my time with Lateef, a kid that is undergoing treatment for hydrocephalus.  While our time was again pretty short, it was great to have the opportunity to spend time with the kids, and be able to put faces and names with the work we were doing.  I recently received news that one of the kids we spent time with, Opio, passed away.  I remember he wasn’t able to verbally communicate, but it was sweet seeing his smile if you grabbed his hand.  Please keep the Gem family in your prayers.

Before we knew it, our workweek came to an end and it was time to give our final presentation.  I’m always amazed at how much work gets done in such a small amount of time, and I’m really grateful with how our team really came together.  Our designs focused on the phase one buildings, the children’s home, guest house, and administration building.  The children’s homes allow for the kids to be in more a more “family” environment, instead of all of them all being grouped int he same building.  The designs were really interesting, the Architects made the buildings very open and spacious to allow natural light and airflow, and there was also a lot of exposed structure.  We utilized concrete framing for the building, and steel trusses to support the long roof spans.  The Gem leadership gave us some good feedback, and were excited to see the designs and plans.  I’m grateful with the work the Lord allowed us to get done, and I’m eager to see it hopefully come to fruition this spring or summer.

After our presentation, we took some team photos together, and then spent some time of affirmation for one another.  This is one of my favorite parts of eMi trips, where everyone spends some time encouraging one another and lifting each other up in prayer.  For our closing time, we went to a cultural center in Kampala, where people from different tribes from all over Uganda performed various local dances and music.  It was a great time, and nice way to close out the trip.

During our final day, we enjoyed spending some time going downtown in Kampala.  It was great to see some of the places that became so familiar to me, and I enjoyed to once again experience the hustle and bustle of downtown Kampala.  It was nice to be able to spend a few final hours with my fellow team members before we all flew out and went our separate ways.  I miss working with them, but I’m grateful the Lord brought together such a great team, and I really enjoyed getting to know each one of them.  Hopefully someday we will be able to meet again.

Before coming back to the States, I had the chance to go into downtown Brussels during my layover.  I was able to go in college, but it was raining hard during our visit, so it was nice to be able to see it on a bright, sunny day.

Overall, the trip was an awesome experience, and I’m really grateful I had the opportunity to once again go and serve with eMi.  I wasn’t completely eager to necessarily go back to Uganda, I mostly wanted to just go on a project where I could be utilized to serve as a structural engineer.  However, it was great to be able to be back in Uganda and reconnect with some great people, and also recall some great memories.  I also am grateful to be able to work with such an amazing ministry in The Gem Foundation.  I’m inspired by the work that they do, and it’s awesome to see how the Lord has used them over the past 4 years.  I’m eager to see what God has in store in the future, and through His Grace and Provision, to see the buildings get constructed.

Overall, as I reflect on my time in Uganda, there are two verses that come to mind.

James 1:27a “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress”

Psalm 68:5 “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in His holy dwelling.” 

Gem is doing this work in a very real way, and I’m happy I had the opportunity to play a small part in it.

As the Lord leads, could you please be praying for these things:

  • Ministry of the Gem Foundation:  Please pray for Gem, and the work they are continually doing to reach these kids.  Pray that God will allow Josh, Emma, and all the staff the strength and endurance to provide care for these kids that require a lot of attention, and that they will receive God’s joy in their work.  Please also pray for them as they mourn the loss of Opio.
  • Jim and the eMi staff and interns:  Please pray for Jim and the other eMi staff and interns that are working on the project.  At this point, they are getting close to wrapping up the drawings and production, please pray for strength for them to carry through and finish everything up.
  • My involvement with eMi:  Please pray for me as I write the structural report section, and also pray for further opportunities to both go and serve with eMi, as well as share about eMi to my co-workers and others around here in the DC-area.

I’m grateful for all of you, and look forward to sharing more in the future.  I know this certainly won’t be my last eMi trip, and I’m eager for the next opportunity the Lord will provide!

Many blessings,

David

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EMI Gem Village Project Trip Recap Part 1

November 2, 2017

Hello everyone!

I apologize, I know this post is very long overdue.  I’ve been wanting to post a recap and photos of my project trip to Uganda for a while, but I got busy with work commitments and other activities.  Better late than never though!

The trip was awesome!  I’m always struck by the Lord’s sovereignty to bring the right people together, and helping us work well together as a team to complete a lot of tasks in a very short amount of time.  It was a lot of long hours of work, but the Lord carried us through and I’m really excited to see how He continues to work and hopefully bring this project to fruition.

We had a pretty large team, but the scope of the project made it necessary to have a lot of volunteers.  Our team consisted of 5 Architects, 4 Civil Engineers, 2 Structural Engineers, and an Occupational Therapist.  It was great meeting everyone, and hearing their stories about how they got connected with EMI and decided to join the trip.  Volunteers came from all over the world, and we overall had a very cohesive group that worked well together.  Here is a photo of the team:

DSCF0125Left to right: Emma & Josh (Gem Foundation Directors), Kathy & Mark (Architect volunteers, currently serving at a school in Addis, Ethiopia), Jenny (OT Specialist from Miami, FL), Tom (Civil/Structural Engineer from Houston, TX), Olivia (Civil Engineer from Indianapolis, IN), Andrew (Architect from Australia), Myself, Jim (trip leader, staff Architect at EMI-Uganda), Farnaz (Civil Engineer from Vancouver, Canada), Elsie (Civil Engineer Intern from Uganda), Scott (Architect Intern from California), Josh (Architect from Australia)

During our first day, we stopped by the new EMI office in Kajjansi, located between Kampala and Entebbe.  It was awesome to be able to see the completed office, and reconnect with some of the staff that I got to know well when I was an intern.  Right after I first arrived in Uganda 5 years ago, EMI announced the new partnership with Mission Aviation Fellowship to build a combined office at their airfield, and we got to visit the site of the new office.  It was really neat to be able to come full circle and see the completed building.  It was a blessing to be able to reconnect with several of the staff members, and also enjoy another one of Janet’s fantastic lunches!  We also had a design review/orientation to prepare us for the type of mindset we should have for the work ahead.  Here are some photos from our office visit:

Our visit to the office was pretty quick, I would’ve enjoyed staying longer and catching up with more staff members, but we also had to get going to the Gem Foundation site.  I’m grateful we had the chance to stop by, even for a little bit.  At the end of our office visit we met Josh & Emma, the Gem Foundation directors, as well as Dwight, Emma’s father, who was visiting from Arizona.  I’ll write more about them later in this post, they have a really neat story about how God led them to begin the Gem Foundation and allowed them to acquire the new land.

After our office visit, we squeezed into our taxi-van and made our way into Kampala to visit the current Gem Foundation house.  Riding into the city in a cramped taxi definitely brought back a lot of memories, and it was hard to believe it has been 3 years since I was last in Uganda.  It was great to see the reactions and excitement from the other team members, as most of them had never been to Africa and this was all a very new experience for them.

It was really nice to be able to see the Gem Foundation house, and I think it really helped us in the design work ahead.  One of my favorite parts of EMI trips is being able to experience the work of the ministry first-hand.  It was incredible to see how this ministry has really blossomed over the last 3 years since it began, and that they are nearly maxed out on their space.  We got a tour of the home, and then got to spend some time with the kids.  The home is set up very well, and I was encouraged by all the various uplifting scripture that is painted on the wall. Many of the kids are very low-functioning, and need a tremendous amount of care.  It was a little bit overwhelming, since I haven’t worked much with special needs kids before, and it was hard to know what to do.  It was great once we started interacting with the kids, and it was awesome to see their excitement with us being there.  It was hard to realize that most of the kids were abandoned, and would likely not be alive if it weren’t for the ministry of Gem. Many parents simply don’t know how to handle kids with special needs, or they are ashamed and try find a way to get rid of them.  Despite this, it was awesome to see the joy evident in the kids, and how they enjoyed even the simple things.  Two kids that particularly struck me were Hamza and Joshua.  Hamza is a boy with cerebral pulsy and is also deaf.  Even though he cannot communicate with words, it was awesome to see his joy and excitement to throw the ball or play on the drum.  Joshua suffered severe burns on most of his body and lost his hands when he was intentionally left inside a burning house. Despite this, he still enjoys running around outside, playing games with the other kids.  It was really eye-opening to see the Gem house, and helped prepare our team for the work ahead.

The next day we traveled about an hour outside of Kampala to the new land for the Gem Village site.  It is a beautiful piece of land, and it was neat to hear how the Lord provided the land for the ministry.  We walked through the site to determine the lay of the land, and plan out where would be the best spot to place the new development.  We also met with Josh and Emma, and heard some general ideas on what they wanted to include in the different phases.  I struggled a little bit on what I could do in my role, since there were no other existing buildings on site to see different types of construction, and my work can’t really begin until the architecture team has the buildings laid out.  I ended up jumping in to help some of the other civil engineers with some site studies, which was nice to branch out to other areas.  Overall it was a great day, and nice to begin our work.

 

Later that night, we met with Josh and Emma to hear their story about how Gem came to be, and how God has been at work in the ministry.  What is remarkable is Emma felt a calling to serve not only in Africa, but specifically Uganda, from a very young age.  She began taking short-term trips when she was a teenager, and later began co-leading trips with her Dad (Dwight) through their church.  During these trips, they would specifically work with orphans in children’s homes.  On one of the trips, Emma noticed that some of the kids had special needs, and were just sitting in the corner, not receiving any care.  She discovered that many of the caretakers simply didn’t know how to care for kids with special needs, and didn’t know what to do.  She found out that there was nothing that could be done for one of the kids, and that he later passed away.  Emma shared that God revealed a specific need for care for special needs kids, and so she followed His calling and started the Gem Foundation.  She shared her vision for the new Gem Village to  become a haven for special needs orphans to receive love and care, and to allow the ministry to continue to grow.

As we got to work, I spent most of my time helping the Civil team while waiting for building layout from the architects.  It was nice to get to know the team members better, and we all enjoyed working together.  On Sunday, I also had the opportunity to meet up with Pastor Albert.  It was great to reunite with him after these several years, and to see how much his children have grown.  All Nations Church is doing really well, and it’s awesome to see their passion for missions work and outreach to villages across the country.  It was fun to spend time at his house, and share in a “light” afternoon meal.

I’ll wrap up for now, but be on the lookout for a second post soon, where I’ll talk about our design work, our second visit to the Gem home, and some final thoughts and observations.  Thank you so much for your support!

Blessings,

David

Returning to Uganda with eMi

August 29, 2017

Hello everyone!

I am excited to announce that I have the opportunity to go back to Uganda and serve on a project trip with EMI!  I will be leaving tomorrow, and will be there for two weeks.  I have been seeking out and praying for opportunities to serve on another eMi project, and I’m really grateful to be able to return to Uganda once again.

I will be joining a team of fellow engineers and architects to partner with the Gem Foundation, a ministry that provides care and outreach to special needs children.  The Gem foundation was founded in 2014 after seeing a great need to provide for the neglected and vulnerable “Special Needs Orphan.”  The ministry seeks to advocate, protect, educate, love, and care for children with special needs who have been abandoned, abused, and orphaned, ultimately showing that every child is a precious Gem in the eyes of God.  It is an amazing ministry, and I’m thrilled to be able to partner with them.  This video describes more of their work:

The Gem Foundation recently acquired about 85 acres of land in the Kakiri area, just northwest of Kampala.  They have a vision to turn the land into “The Gem Village”, which will be a campus that will provide full care for the orphaned children to help them to grow and thrive in their daily lives.  The long-term master plan for the site will eventually include children’s homes, a medical clinic, special needs school, church, staff housing, and an assisted living facility for elderly disabled people.  Our team will provide design for the campus infrastructure, as well as phased master planning and schematic design for all the buildings on site and detailed design for the first-phase buildings.  I am very grateful for this opportunity to once again use engineering in the context of specifically helping those that are in need.

I am reminded of Matthew 25:35-40  as I have prepared to go:

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’  Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’  The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’”

Here are some specific ways you can be praying for me during my time in Uganda:

  • Our work with eMi:  Please pray for our team to work efficiently and diligently, and be able to provide for the needs of the Gem Foundation.  Pray that they will be able to clearly articulate their vision, and that we will be able to produce designs that are functional and will serve the children.  Please pray for me that the Lord will give me the knowledge I need to complete the work, and that we will work well together as a team.  Ultimately, pray that we will know we are working to serve Christ and His Kingdom.
  • Team camaraderie:  Please pray for our team as a whole, that we will bond with one another and enjoy fellowship and camaraderie.  We have introduced ourselves via e-mail, and they all seem like a terrific group of people.
  • Remaining preparations and logistics:  Please pray for me as I gather all of my items for the trip, and for traveling mercies for our team.  Pray for our trip leader, Jim, as he organizes all the details.
I’m very grateful for each one of you, and am thankful for your faithful prayer support.  I’ll hopefully have the chance to post during the trip, and will definitely at least post after the trip.
Many blessings to you all,
David
IMG_3933

Wrapping Up

March 25, 2015

Hey everyone!

I finally have a chance to sit down and finish up with this final entry on my time in Ugnada.  I know there has been a bit of a gap between my posts, but I think it’s been good for me to be able to take some time and process some of the things the Lord spoke to me and taught me.

During most of my second week in Uganda, I was able to have the opportunity to spend time with my brother and take part in his work with Empower-a-Child.  (http://www.empowerachild.org).  EAC is a Christian ministry that has been around since 2008.  Their primary mission is to move kids from “poverty to possibility” and work to help children discover the love of Christ and grow to a place where they can become successful.   They started out by providing sponsorship for kids all throughout central Uganda, but the director later felt God’s calling to provide a central location for their ministry base.  God allowed the ministry to acquire a 40-acre plot of land in Zirobwe, about an hour from Kampala.  This area used to be a very spiritually dark place, and the people used to perform child sacrifices and consult with a local witch doctor.  There was a local primary school in the area, but the education was very poor quality and the kids would often get beat and abused.  It was amazing to see how the Lord has already transformed the place, and is making an impact for His kingdom.  A church now stands at the exact spot where the child sacrifices used to take place, and EAC was able to acquire the primary school and transform it into a place where kids from the community can receive education, care, and love, and are shown the love of Christ.  I have been able to follow my brother’s work through updates he sends, but it was awesome to be able to experience it with him first-hand.

Before heading up to the village, I joined the EAC team for a ministry outreach to a local children’s hospital.  We gathered the kids together to hang out and play games, sing songs, and act out a Bible lesson.  I wish I could have taken pictures, but it is the hospital’s policy that pictures are not allowed.  It was great to see the joy in the kid’s faces, and how genuinely excited they were to spend time with us, despite their disabilities and illnesses.  It reminded me of seeing the kids at Cherish, and the kids at the deaf and blind school in Burundi.  Many of these kids are not otherwise given care and love, and their disabilities are a source of embarrassment for their parents, so they are put out on their own.  It was encouraging to see the work the hospital is doing to help out these kids.

After spending time at the hospital, we headed up to the village.  It was great to see my brother “in his element” in the village, and see him interact with all the kids.  It was awesome to see the genuine excitement of the kids to see us, and how eager they were to get their picture taken and look at themselves in the camera.  It was funny that almost everyone would ask my brother and I if we were twins, and their shocked look when I told them I was two years older.  After hanging out with the kids at the school, we went into the village to meet with some families that a couple other volunteers were planning to give chickens to raise.  It was great to walk past people’s homes in the village, seeing the simplicity of their lives and how they are content without all the distractions that we deal with daily.

The next day we gathered the younger kids before school started for a Bible lesson and singing songs.  I really had to step a bit outside my comfort zone and just open up and be ridiculous in front of the kids.  After that, we spent some time finishing up the brick work for a storehouse for the food that the kids are fed during lunch.  Right now, the food supplies are stored in the staff homes, so this permanent storage unit will be a great blessing.  I really gained an appreciation for how difficult it is to lay brick, and was even more impressed by the high quality construction that was done at Cherish.  I also got a chance to meet Moses, the Ugandan boy that my brother is sponsoring.

After finishing up our work, we came back to the church to lead Scripture Union, the weekly chapel service for all the primary school children.  It was great to see all the kids gathered together, and see them joyfully worshiping.  The volunteers take turns every week with sharing the message, and one of the guys gave a great message on Job, and waiting on the Lord.  We invited anyone to come up and pray afterwards if they wanted to give their life to Christ or needed prayer for anything.  While no one came up immediately, as we were wrapping up one little girl came and said she wanted to give her life to Christ.  It was a great reminder that it’s not all about the numbers, that even though dozens of kids didn’t come up, there is still rejoicing when even one comes to join God’s family.

After Scripture Union my brother and I walked around the EAC site to hang out and talk.  As we were walking, I felt two little hands reach up and grab mine, and I discovered a group of several kids following us.  It was great to see them so excited to just walk with us, and spend some time hanging out together.  After the kids got out of school, we got the chance to hang out and play games with the kids, and brought out the soccer ball and football.  It was fun to just hang out and spend some time with them.  In the evening, we had the chance to go and visit Moses and the rest of his family.  It was great to meet all of his siblings, and I was encouraged by seeing his father sacrifice and prioritize his family and his kids.  Many fathers in the village are absent, and go away for months on end, leaving their wives to fend for themselves and take care of the kids.  Moses’ father is breaking this trend, and is a role model for other men in the church.

The next day, we spent the morning meeting with several women who are part of the “Women Empowerment” program.  As I mentioned earlier, many of the men in the village are absent, and the women are left to fend for themselves.  This is a relatively new program, where EAC has stepped in to help the women earn a living through farming or making bead necklaces that are sold in the States, and it helps empower them to be able to provide for their families.  We went to follow-up with some of the women who are part of the program, to figure out what their needs are, and how we can more effectively serve them.  Many of these women have 6+ children, and it was cool to hear about how this program has really helped them to provide for their families.

Overall, my time in the village was awesome, and it was great to be able to get a first-hand experience of the work my brother has been doing.  There is something refreshing about getting away from the city, and going somewhere where there is no running water, electricity only when a generator is running, and not having access to phone, e-mail, and internet.  As I’ve felt before, I was struck by the simplicity of the lives of the people, and how they are content with very little by Western standards.  It was great to interact with the kids, seeing their smiling faces and joy in just hanging out with us, playing games, taking part in activities, or just walking with us.  I loved seeing their passion to learn and go to school, and how they count it as a gift and a privilege.  It was awesome to be able to take part in the ministry of EAC, and it’s amazing how the Lord has already used them to transform the community in Zirobwe, and make His light shine and glory known.  I’m excited to see how He continues to use them.

After returning from the village, I spent one more day wrapping up my work at eMi.  I was able to arrange a meeting between some of the leaders at EAC with some staff at eMi, and it was great to be able to facilitate and allow an opportunity for both ministries to share about one another.  EAC has some big plans and visions for their land in Zirobwe, and they are a great example of the type of ministries that eMi likes to come alongside and help plan out their future vision.  There is a real possibility that someday in the future, eMi will be able to host a project team, and it would be awesome to be able to go back to Zirobwe and use my engineering knowledge to help with some of their future building designs.

Along with wrapping up at eMi on Friday, I was asked to again share at Owino market at their daily lunchtime service.  Along with the radio ministry, Pastor Arwin leads a worship service everyday at lunchtime.  I was able to share the Word when I was there two years ago, and it was a privilege to again be able to get up in front of everyone and share with them.  I shared about the church in Laodicia in Revelation 3, and how we need to fight being lukewarm by allowing the Lord to draw us to Himself.    Pastor Arwin has a cool ministry in the market, and it’s so good to hear about the Word of God being openly preached in a public setting at the busy market everyday.  I pray that the Lord will continue to use the ministry to draw people to Himself.

In the evening, Ramadan had us over to his house for a “local style” dinner.  This was similar to what I had before, where everyone sits on mats on the floor and shares communal food in the middle.  This was one of the neatest cultural experiences I had when I came before, and I’m glad my brother and some of his volunteers got to come as well.  It was great to see some of Ramadan’s friends from the market including Hakim and Eddie, and it was a great time of community with some of the local people.

Before I knew it, my time was wrapping up and it was time to head back home.  I enjoyed spending my last few hours hanging out with my brother and Ramadan, and some others from EAC.  It was really encouraging to especially talk with Obbo and Patrick, two of the local Ugandan staff with EAC.  Both of these guys work tirelessly, and really sacrifice a lot to help the work of the ministry.  Obbo works every single night as a guard to ensure the safety and security of the compound, but he always has a big smile on his face and is always happy to talk and takes a genuine interest in people.  Patrick drives the volunteers and staff to various ministries and twice a week drives to and from the village to bring the team for their mid-week work and church every Sunday.  On top of that, he always jumps into the work with both feet, and it was inspiring to see him working so hard and diligently while we were in the village, even though he wasn’t feeling very well.  He also frequently is asked to make special trips, and will always give rides whenever there is a need.  On top of driving to and from the village when we were there, he made special trips across town to pick us up from the worship night at Doors, take us back for our meeting with eMi, and also took me to the airport.  Both of these guys are two of the most hard-working, sacrificial people I have met.

What really struck me was that while I was talking to them, they said that I was an inspiration to them.  They really thought it was inspiring that I would take time off work to come and help serve, and that I use my abilities as an engineer to help those who are in need.  I really feel like I’m not doing that much, but it was really humbling to hear from them, two guys who do so much to serve others, that I was inspiring to them.

Overall, my time in Uganda was awesome, and I’m so grateful that I was able to go back.  Even though the time was quick, I’m grateful I was able to help out at eMi, get a taste of my brother’s minsitry with EAC, reconnect with so many people that I’ve grown so close to, and get a focused time away from all the distractions and responsibilities back home.

“I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.  I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath into you, and you will come to life.  Then you will know that I am the Lord.”  -Ezekiel 37:5-6

The Lord will guide you always; He will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame.  You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.”

-Isaiah 58:11

During my two weeks in Uganda, I really felt like I was able to draw near to God, and that He used this time to strengthen me and uplift me.  In some ways, I felt like I came alive again, and I renewed my focus and energy in trusting in Him and being satisfied in Him.  In some ways, I feel it has been easy to allow life to become routine or mundane, and just go through the day doing the same thing over again, feeling like the Lord isn’t really working.  Along with that, I feel like I have been struggling with chasing after things that won’t satisfy me, rather than finding my true satisfaction and contentment in God.  My time in Uganda helped me gain a fresh and renewed perspective on things, and really helped remind me of how big God is, and what He wants to do in me and through me.  As I continue to press into Him and seek after His will, I am eager to see how He continues to grow me and shape me into the person He wants me to be.

Please continue to keep the people and ministries I have been able to connect with in your prayers.  It was refreshing to be able to connect with them again, and I’m excited to see how the Lord has used their work and ministry, and am eager to see how He continues to work in them.

Thank you so much for all of your faithful prayers and support during my time in Uganda.  I’m really grateful for each one of you, and appreciate your continued prayers as I fulfill my calling here in Washington, DC.  I am going to sign off for now, but I plan to continue to use this blog to post about future trips with eMi and other opportunities that the Lord presents.  Thank you for reading, and many blessings!

In Christ,

David