One Holy and Very Humbling Moment

Almost 18 years ago I found myself leaning against Emma and Liberty’s bedroom wall listening to Emma’s most sincere and innocent night time prayer.  Her little voice prayed totally out of the blue, “Please let me be the one you pick to go to Africa to take care of the orphans…..”

In fact I opened my eyes wide to see Emma’s sweet face as she sincerely and softly spoke to the Lord.  And it was at that moment that the Lord peacefully affirmed in my heart, that this was a most extraordinary and holy moment in Emma’s life and in our personal family history.  Our faithful God was at that very moment calling our very innocent, gentle-hearted and meek little six-and-a-half-year-old to work with the orphans of Africa and life would never be the same.

For the next years, every single night she prayed the same prayer.  It was as though she pictured thousands of people jumping up and down, hand lifted and shouting, “Pick me!! Me! Me!!” and God was scanning the crowd trying to decide who He would choose.  She never wavered. Not even for a second. Her calling was steadfast.  And she was sure.

Imagine my joy this past week, when the day after I landed Emma and Josh drove me to walk the land that The Gem Foundation is purchasing.  It was yet another holy moment.  I was in complete awe.  This is the fulfillment of almost 18 years of praying!

The land itself is completely breathtaking!  Stunning! So peaceful!  “Gorgeous” is a wimpy word to describe just how beautiful it is!

There are pine trees, palm trees and eucalyptus trees growing on it!! It has mountains in the distance.  A rice patty nearby. And beautiful flat ground for wheelchairs to easily move about!  It is amazing!!


I love nature and all the things that God created well except snakes and bats!  What an array of beauty abounds on this spectacular land!IMG_1081There are even coffee beans growing on it!!

IMG_1050And plenty of bananas, yummy guava (and yes, it truly was delicious!) and avocado trees!! I am in awe of all God is doing for The Gem Foundation.  It was the thrill of a lifetime to see just what we had prayed for for all these years.

guava-1514365Did I mention that there are spectacular flowers too? I was in my personal flowery-paradise!!

IMG_1071 IMG_1083

Of course we realize that it is an extremely rare and unique privilege to have God call a little one when they are so very young.  We know that it was a unique and unbelievable joy to watch her grow into her very specific calling.  So why did He do it this way? I have zero clue.  But we do not take the privilege of cheering her (and now Josh) on lightly.

Over the last 18 years, as her momma, I would pray for her serving in Africa one day.  As the years passed, I prayed for different aspects of it all – whatever the Lord brought to mind.  So it was very humbling to walk the land and to have the opportunity to see where Emma, Josh and their family will live with the precious Gems.

What a thrill of a lifetime!!

Of course it is never easy to ‘give our kids’ to a foreign land.  Yet, God in His great mercy did beautiful things for my very broken life once-upon-a-time.  How could I not give back to Him all that He gave to me?  He does extraordinary things through yielded hearts.  He began preparing us all almost 18 years ago.  What a joy to see what He had planned way back then!!

He is so very faithful.  I cannot thank Him enough that He is a personal God who loves to be personal with us!

PS:  It’s not too late to join the first team to GO and work on the land!!  For an application and details of that first International Voice of the Orphan GO Team serving on the land:

5 thoughts on “One Holy and Very Humbling Moment

  1. Beautiful. I’m so excited to see what God’s got in store for the Gem Foundation. It’s so great having a land to call home, where these kids belong and are SO loved. Where you can plant real, deep roots.
    Have you come across LIV village in SA? A friend mentioned them yesterday and I’ve spent all day reading about what they’re doing and using all my internet up watching youtube videos on them.
    Such inspiring and God-filled work – bringing family to the orphaned and vulnerable. I’m going to see if I can visit them on my way home from Zambia (where I’m living at the moment). I fly out via J-burg so shouldn’t be too difficult to organise.

  2. I stand amazed at what the Lord is doing in Uganda through Emma and Josh. You touched my heart when you talked about letting our children go to serve as my daughter, her husband, and 4 grandkids just moved to Papua New Guinea to serve the Lord. Funny, my daughter has a heart for orphans and she is the one who told me about your blog and the Gem Foundation. Praise the Lord for kiddos who answer the call. Lots of Love, Margaret

    1. Oh Margaret! Thank you for commenting!! Us missionary moms need each other! It is a thrill to see our kids go, and the ache has never left my heart since she moved here. I was so thankful she went…but miss her so much. God has been so faithful. So very faithful. I will pray for you and your kids as the Lord brings you/them to mind! Love from Uganda…but heading home soon!! Then from Phoenix

  3. As a fellow mom-to-14, I am thrilled to have found your blog. I can’t wait to learn more about you and your family.

    1. Awww Renee!! I love ‘meeting’ someone who has a large family like ours!! So fun!! Welcome to Our Place Called Simplicity! I pray God uses it to encourage your heart each time you stop by!! xo

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