Thursday, January 19, 2012

And now...the rest of the story

Well, this certainly was a Christmas to remember….

Since I lost my photos, all I can do is remember it.

But all kidding aside, let me tell you how God has shown Himself in all of this.

When I returned back to the student camp after being robbed, Doug and I went about cancelling our credit card, etc.

Caleb told me twice in the car, “Mom, I can’t read.  You could have my Bible.”  (He received a Bible for memorizing 10 verses before he could read).

Life went about pretty normal for the next few hours except when something would jar me into reality, and I would remember something else that was in backpack.

That night, for the New Year’s celebration, I was missing the glow sticks for my kids that were in my backpack, but wouldn’t you know…a mom had sent glow sticks with her daughter to camp, and she shared with everyone!


The next night, before we left camp, I was in the bathroom getting the kids ready for bed, when Karis heard a knock and went to answer the door. She came back with what looked like a black book and handed it to me.  She said, “Someone brought this to you.”

After further examination, I realized it was a new kind of Kindle.  I’d never seen one with a touch screen before.  I ran outside, and this couple that came as volunteers with the team from Florida, were walking away from my cabin.  I said, “What is this?”  They waved me off with a smile and said, “It’s yours.”

After getting the kids down, I went to find them with tears in my eyes.  When I saw her, I said, “I can’t take this.  Mine wasn't even this nice,” and she said, “Jesus told me to give it to you.  It’s yours.”

I went from this:

To this:  

I was a mess of tears…

I was overwhelmed by God’s love for me.

Never in a million years, will I get over that act of kindness.  Jesus is so good to me, even in the little things.

But God didn’t stop there… 

My birthday was two days later, and we were at a different location in Kenya.  We went to some training for our company, and a sweet friend of mine who knows me well, knew what else I needed replaced for my birthday… kleenex and a chapstick substitute.  If you know me, you know these are much-used and much-loved items!


I filled out a property claims report on my stolen articles, and in the meantime, I started shopping for replacements on-line.  I have a friend coming to Uganda at the end of January, and I knew if I could get things ordered and sent to her, she could bring them.

So…I ordered a new ipod and a new camera, new cases, new earphones, etc.

The trick was the Bible.  I wasn’t really ready to give in to a different Bible, but I was getting closer.  Since my Bible is out of print now, and it was listed for sale on Amazon for $400, I decided I probably could live with a different version…

I tried writing the company to ask about any they might have stuck back on a shelf somewhere, but I never heard back from them.

At the same time, my mom was hunting around on line, and she found one on ebay, and the sale was going to be over in three days on a Sunday morning right before our Sunday morning service.  I got up that Sunday, bought internet time, and waited. 

And do you know what?

God let me win the bid on that Bible!

(And it was less than $400, you’ll be glad to know.)

AND a lady in my hometown gave me money to buy it!

I am now the proud owner of my very same Bible, sans notes and underlines and highlights.  But I look forward to all the new ways God is going to show Himself fresh to me in the coming years.

It still doesn’t end there…

People were so gracious to me after reading my last blog.  I had so many people offer to help, but I knew that insurance would cover most of it (even though I’m still waiting for a reimbursement amount).   I’m really bad at asking for help or accepting gifts.

A friend in Mississippi bought me a new backpack, and another friend in North Carolina bought the kids two of the three card games that were lost.  A fellow missionary at youth camp gave me allergy pills to take to my training meeting PLUS her hand bag, as a replacement for my backpack.  (I think she felt sorry for me having to carry my things around in a plastic grocery sack.)

As a cool sidenote, the Kindle Fire holds music as well, so it has been a replacement ipod for the time being.

I got the sweetest note from the lady who gave me the Kindle Fire.  She told me that when she arrived back in Florida, someone had bought her a new Kindle Fire, and it was waiting there for her when she arrived! 

God blessed both of us, and we are both overwhelmed and grateful!

As a side note to the Kindle story:  While in Uganda, before this trip, I had tried to upgrade my older kindle.  When I did, it froze became of the lack of “whispernet” in Uganda (if that means anything to you).  I took it to Kenya in hopes I could fix it in another country, and I had already ordered a replacement, because that’s what amazon recommended I do.

WELL…my supervisor fixed my old kindle six days before it was stolen!  It was working fine.  But I thought nothing of it.  I knew my replacement kindle I had ordered was being sent to my friend in Houston to bring to me.  What I didn’t know was that there were strings attached.

I received an email a few days ago from amazon telling me they were waiting for the “broken” kindle to be sent back to them.


I explained that the one they needed had gotten stolen, but for some reason, I don’t think they believed me.

Anyway, I had my friend in Houston send back my new replacement, AND JUST AFTER I DID…I received an email from a friend in Mississippi who told me she had 2 old Kindles she didn’t use anymore.  She asked if I could use them.

SO…she is sending those to me for the kids to use in school.  Since we don’t have a library here, a kindle will be great for the girls to be able to get some of the books they enjoy reading and my mom doesn’t have to pay to ship over books anymore.

Do you need any more proof that God will take care of you in ALL things in ALL ways?

“He gives and takes away.  He gives and takes away.  My heart will choose to say, “Lord, blessed be Your name.”


LoveforAfrica said...

oh my goodness gracious. God is so good. This post just blessed my heart. I want to jump on a plane right now just to come hug you guys.

Shilingi-Moja said...

Thanks, Kathryn, for sharing both stories (robbery and God's replacements). I had no idea while you were about all of this. So sorry you had to experience some of the worst sides of Kenya.

Stevens Family said...

Wow Wow Wow - thanks for sharing and encouraging,

we love you guys

Anonymous said...

Our God is so good to us! I am so glad you get to experience His abundant goodness in this way! Wow!
Love you!
The Bowmans