Sunday, May 19, 2013

A Couple of Updates...

First off a huge thank you to everyone who supported us through our Mother's Day campaign.  I love that I do not personally know so many of the people who shopped and donated.  It's amazing to me how word spreads about this work.  I've learned a long time ago to not try to figure out how God is going to meet certain needs.  Instead, I need to sit back and enjoy watching God work.

And despite my last statement, I'm not going to lie.. I was a bit worried about paying for the mama kits.  For a few days I kept trying to come up with schemes to raise more money.  Finally I told myself that I needed to rest in the work that had been done and let God provide.  My mantra became, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God."~Philippians 4:6 

And God provided abundantly, which should never surprise me, but still humbles me.  I have enough money to pay for the kits we already purchased, and I'll have enough waiting to place another order as soon as more mama kits are available.

To each of you that donated, bought jewelry and t-shirts, shared with your church, shared on Facebook or with your friends, I say thank you on behalf of the hundreds of women you are helping.  Every dollar truly matters and makes a difference.

I got this sweet testimony this week from a missionary serving in Jinja.
"Today I gave out 5 kits to students at Uganda Baptist Seminary. Later in the afternoon one of our graduates who also serves as an adjunct faculty member came into my clinic.  He lives in northern Uganda.  A couple of weeks ago a 3 yr old orphan who lives with his family played with matches in his house while he and his wife were out working in the field.  The child set a mosquito net on fire which then destroyed his entire house and all that they owned---clothing, mattresses, food stores, furniture, all of his theological books, etc.... No one was injured.   
When we told a pastor in the states who has been here to teach several times over the years about what had happened, he sent us money from another pastor in the states to help this Ugandan pastor/teacher.  I gave the money to him today to help him replace some of his property.   
The last time he came here to teach, I had given him a Mama Kit since his fourth child is due soon.  Today he said that the Mama Kit had burned along with everything else.  So I was able to give him another Mama Kit to take home to his wife.  He was thankful to have another kit to help his wife have a safe delivery.  (They have 3 living children and had one that died several years ago.) 
Thanks so much for providing Mama Kits for the wives of our pastors and church leaders at Uganda Baptist Seminary!!  Each time I give out a kit I tell them that the ladies in the US who donated the kits are praying for their wives to have safe deliveries and healthy babies!"

We still could use a few more donations toward our outreach projects during our trip.  We'll be feeding hundreds of women and children nearly every day.  We also may still be looking for a laptop.  If you'd like to donate towards these projects please email me info@mercyformamas.com 

If you are interested, we still have t-shirts available.  I have Adult Smalls-adult XXL, but quantities are limited so order soon!  Shirts are $17 (+3 shipping). 

We also still have jewelry available.  These would make end of the year teacher gifts or baby shower presents for an expectant mama!  Check out the "shop" tab above.

Again, thank you so much for supporting this work.  I could not do it without your love and support.  And I look forward to telling you many success stories in the days ahead!

Monday, May 6, 2013

The Need

In one month my team heads back to Uganda.  Aaahhh!!  It will be here before we know it and we have a lot to do to get ready! I'm taking 13 people with me with all sorts of skills and abilities.  I can't wait to see how God is going to use this group.

We have a jam-packed schedule, and we will minister to hundreds and hundreds of women.  We will visit at least four crisis pregnancy centers.  We'll lead five villages outreach events and visit two orphanages.  And we will host two missionary encouragement dinners.   The villages are very excited for us to come. I heard today that one village is expecting close to 300 women and another is expecting 500!  I'm assuming not all of those women will be pregnant, but many of them will be. We will be busy.  As for the missionaries, they are VERY excited we are hosting another dinner to honor them.  I've had many already RSVP and invite their friends.

With the expectant mothers we will share prenatal care, delivery, and breastfeeding information.  We'll talk about nutrition and diet. We'll teach them some of the basics of prenatal and infant massage.  We'll do very basic exams on the women that need it.  And most importantly we will share the love of Jesus with them and pray for them and their children.

Last week, my mama kit supplier contacted me.  She said that they were running low on mama kits and she did not know when they would be getting more.  She knew that I was going to need a lot for my trip.  She wanted to hold all of the kits that they had for me, and she would go ahead and deliver them so no one would be tempted to take them.  Early last week, 1500 mama kits arrived in my friends' garage.

Each kit represents a mama.   I get teary-eyed just thinking about this work and the impact.  Each week I get contacted by people that are passing out the kits and they tell me what a blessing they are to the women.  I know to us it seems too simple, but to them this is hope.  This week, I even heard about one missionary that had a baby named after her after she gave the mama a kit.  I love it.

I teach a children's mission class at our church.  This week we watched a video about a former homeless man who now pastors an inner city church in Los Angeles.  This man says his whole life turned around when one little girl came up to the dirty, smelly, scary-looking homeless man and said, "Jesus loves you."  I've been thinking about that for days.  I'm sure that little girl has no idea the impact she had on him.  Her three simple and sincere words made a huge difference.  God used her to soften this man's heart. 

A mama kit can have the same effect as those little girl's words.  Yes, mama kits do help save lives.  Yes, they do help prevent infection and they do encourage women to seek medical attention.  But in a simple way, they also give hope.  They let a woman who has been through unspeakable trials know that someone cares about her and her baby.  They soften hearts to hear about the love of Jesus.   

Friends, I need your help.  I need to raise more money for mama kits.  We need to pay the balance for the kits we just received.  We will easily pass out all 1500 of those during our trip.  I already have requests for mama kits as soon as my supplier gets more.  I hate the idea of having to tell people that I cannot get them more kits, especially when I know they are being used for great ministry.

Just today, I heard from a woman working on a remote island that is 4-5 hours away from the city.  She heard about our work and desperately wants some kits to use for her new birthing clinic. 

We also need help paying for some of the ministry projects we will be doing on the trip.  This includes providing lunch for the ladies and children during our outreach clinics and also paying the Ugandan nurses who will help with our teaching.  

We also would love a new-to-us laptop to take to the man who runs things for us in Uganda.  A good condition used laptop would be wonderful if you happen to have an extra one around. 

I know I've often asked you for donations, but I feel passionate about this cause.  I see and hear about the need constantly.  I promise you that every donation goes directly toward helping these women.  I feel strongly that we are called to help women and orphans.  I can't think of a better way to help than through orphan prevention.

Donations for mama kits can be made directly to The Hope Venture (link on the top right).  If you are interested in helping with our ministry projects or if you have a laptop donation please feel free to email me at info@mercyformamas.com, and we can talk about the best way to do that.

It's also not too late to give Mercy for Mamas this Mother's Day.  Check out our "SHOP" tab at the top of the page.  All jewelry money will go directly toward buying mama kits.  Order before Wednesday and you should get it in time for Sunday.  Or make a donation in honor of someone and I'll email you a special card for you give to her explaining your gift.  It's that easy.

Friday, May 3, 2013

What if...

 what if a simple gift could help to prevent a child from becoming an orphan?
 
what if this gift could save the life of a precious mother?

 
 
what if this gift could encourage women to seek medical treatment
who otherwise would not?
 
what if this gift could prevent infection?
 
what if this gift could give a woman hope?
 
what if this gift was a huge financial blessing to this woman and her family?
 
 
what if this gift opened the door for women to learn about the
One who offers all love, peace and joy?
 
 
what if you could do all of these thing for just $7?
 
 
for $7 you can give hope and show mercy.
 
for $7 you can help to save a woman's life.
 
give mercy today.


{Give today by clicking on The Hope Venture link on the upper right side of this page. If you'd like to give a mama kit in honor of someone you love, we'll send you a special card to give them explaining your gift.  All donations are tax-deductible}