I can see the women with their eyes wide as they tremble in front of the empty tomb.

They listen to the angel’s words – can it be? – and they scurry, terrified and full of joy.

Terrified and full of joy – I live there. It is possible to be afraid of what obedience might bring next and be full of thanks and overflowing joy and TRUST anyway. This giddy anticipation because we see all that He has done for us and we believe that He can only bring more good. Good, even in the ugly.

They see Him and they fall and the grab hold of His feet, clasp them, tangible, real feet. I live there too. Just holding on for dear life, choking back joyful sobs into the feet of my Savior.

Risen from the dead. And He does that with my life, this broken body, these broken dreams.

Beauty from the ashes. Beauty from the torture and the nail scars and the blood red life spilling out everywhere. Beauty from the black of the tomb.

Sitting in her own feces, my two oldest found her. Dogs licking her face, flies swarming her wounds, the ten pound, three year old little darling that would teach us to stretch even more.

She had been living with her uncle who though he loved her was only 17 and had to go to school early each morning with no choice other than to lock her just outside the front door – sometimes with a little food if he had any. There she sat, unable to walk or even crawl as the dogs ate her food and the children of Masese threw stones and sneered.

So Margaret scooped her up and brought her home. It was a hard day and there was too much, but what was the alternative? And though I was anxious and unsure we would be enough, in these terrified moments I find myself full of joy, so we gave her a bath and a warm cup of milk and the rest… the rest is just grace.

Two months later and 15 pound heavier she was ready to go to the village and join her grandmother who is ready and excited to raise her. A few nights ago I stood long on the front porch as they drove away. This happy, healthy, redeemed from the brink of death baby that I had poured my heart into and her sweet uncle who was rejoicing in seeing her well and being about to take her to her grandma’s in the morning.

Tears welled, but a smile swept across my face. To give of ourselves, to give all – this is happiness.

Lochoro’s grandmother lives about 10 hours north of here and while she has been welcomes to always contact me if she needs anything, the likelihood that I will be seeing those sweet chubby cheeks or hearing the high-pitched squeaky voice that I have grown to cherish any time soon in pretty close to none.

Yes. It is hard. But oh, it is good. Because obedience – its all I can do. And Trust – its all I have.

Today we welcome baby Eden into our home and our family. She is three weeks old and coming out of withdrawl from whatever drugs her mother was using when she was born. We will keep her for a month or so, until some friends of mine can find a more permanent solution or family. We have been so loved. The only thing we know to do with that love is give it away.

And as the women in the tomb, I tremble. Because who wouldn’t tremble at the feet of this Savior? At just a glimpse of all He might have planned? But I trust and I fill with Joy and Peace and I overflow with Hope just as promised.

This morning I bend low, clasp His feet. Whisper thank you that He can use my broken self to heal another and another. His love spills out and we spill over – terrified (the good kind!) and full, so full of Joy.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12470201808290045840 paige

    tears& a smile.my words always seem so inadequate after reading your posts. i feel so plain & so unamazing. in moments like this i sit & glimpse at our God…working through you.my goodness, christ is alive and well.praising him for bringing YOU into the little girls life and for her new chance at life.praying for you katie

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03636469387388076513 Leah

    Very few people allow themselves to be truly vulnerable to God's will, you are such a pure inspiration to me! I can only pray that I will fear God and follow his commands and allow Him to break my heart for what breaks His. Thank you for sharing your life with us and with the ones who need you most in Uganda.Leah

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00582858289973928326 Kim

    You are such a beautiful inspiration, Katie.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09940754394594870352 Kendra

    Katie, I have been praying for this sweet baby, Lochoro, as her picture hangs on my refrig. I am beyond happy that she is healthy and being loved, Thank you for being God's Shepard.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02250527593449041309 Reese

    Oh Katie, I am right there with you clasping HIS feet. If I could, I would wash your feet and pray with you over the pain.joy.blood.and transformations you witness day-to-day. All for HIS glory.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/01158109379150463976 Kim

    Oh how you teach us thru your beautiful and obedient example.Covering you and yours in prayer from Hong Kong,Kim

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11120099039644529628 RaVae Erickson

    Ah Katie,How can one respond to this? How can one say anything at all after reading this piece of your heart? Thank you for sharing so freely the love you have been freely given. Thank you for teaching your beautiful daughters to do the same. And thank you for clinging to His feet and Trusting in the midst of it all. You are an encouragement to many. I only hope I can do the same this week, this month, this year. Your path is different than mine, but both your path and mine can only be walked with that deep Trust in Him. So thank you for faithfully walking your path and by so doing encouraging so many others to walk their path with their eyes and ears wide open to what He has in store for them.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/16493721393475710385 Scottish Twins

    God bless you. Your words and stories are just so inspiring. Thank you for bringing me to tears and challenging me to trust Him more and to give more of myself.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/17898216116010442643 Mr T

    Thank you

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07933961640079352765 abandon4christ

    Galatians 6:9. I really enjoyed reading this, and I wanted you to know that I'm praying, and so are many others. This just really hit home about what is actually important in life. Thanks for being obedient to the Lord, it's inspiring.

  • K easton

    Can she be adopted in the united states?

  • Doneva

    Lord, bless this precious family as they serve You so diligently. Draw us all closer that we may see Your will for our lives this clearly.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/03233699754317590360 Heart n Soul

    wow…this is beautiful and profound….LOVE this!…glad to have found your lovely blog.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15417517331142051326 Butterfly Kisses

    Such an awesome post. I've recently been forced to take medication for some blood pressure issues. I'm only 35 and am a total naturalist. So it hit me pretty hard because it has changed my demeanor and energy level. But even this reminds me that I just need to depend on the Lord's plan, even when I don't agree with it and even when I have to seek him for even more strength. I don't know how you do all that you do, but I'm sure you cling to Philippians 4:13 daily, which proclaims, "I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME." Keep the faith Girl, you are an obedient servant.–dianne ;)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/10728658850056680038 consume me…

    Katie…I check several times a week for updates on your blog. And I know, as was true again today, that I will be blessed by your heart and your words. We may never meet..but you can be assured that you come to mind just about every day and you are prayed for. Today I pray for rest. I pray that you will be surprised to find yourself alone for a few minutes…surrounded by silence and whispered words of Strength will fill your heart. I pray that you will have enough…Enough food on your table, enough strength to mother your sweet girls, enough patience to respond to all the questions that those sweet girls must ask in a day, and enough grace to extend to each face you look into today. Know that you are being lifted up while you are feeling spent…He will fill the empty places with just the right amount of His presence. Strength to equal the task…that is His promise.

  • Nolette

    Thank you for giving us a picture of what obedience looks likes like, through you. THANK YOU for being an example to us all.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04989587338864674079 love

    love you. praying for you. praying with you. so grateful the way you allow Him to use you. i sure do hope you're in country on my next time there. =)

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/04989587338864674079 love

    okay…maybe i published too soon. wanted to say that i wept at the image of her grandmother excitedly waiting for her and her uncle rejoicing. love how you are supporting birth families and empowering these precious people to love. LOVE it.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15113948361890808780 Janna

    Beauty from ashes – truly. So thankful for His sustaining grace. Praying that He will continue to prove Himself faithful again and again and again.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00970125519547790967 Kim

    Thank you for sharing your heart – makes me live differently – with a different purpose. Your words make an impression on my heart – one that wont go away.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/02048353657819814647 Celticqueen

    Katie, i have been following your blog for some time now and i am always so moved. i am inspired and humbled by your obedience. Your last two entries have just struck a chord with me. i am on the brink of some major decisions and am looking for some answers. i too want to be obedient. Thank you for blessing me. i will continue to pray for you and your girls

  • Christine

    As I catch up with your last few posts, I am crying tears of sorrow and joy simultaneously. I am touched by how the Holy Spirit flows through your words and allows my heart to be broken by what breaks God's heart. At the same time I feel joy in knowing He is with us and will never forsake us. And that His deep love for us can burst through even the most devastating circumstances if we are willing to receive it. Thank you for serving and sharing your sweet and sensative heart.

  • Heidi

    Katie, may the Lord continue to show His mercy and goodness to you each day. May you feel His loving arms wrapped around you when life requires great faith. And may you continue to fight the good fight as He carries you down the marvelous path He has set before you. Loving Him,Heidi

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/00984946345145279521 Erica

    Beautiful. Praying for you always.

  • Anonymous

    Katie, I thank my heavenly Father that He uses you to keep prodding me towards a more revolutionary faith. This is the church as it should be. Bless you and your beautiful children. Susan

  • Anonymous

    you are doing the things that God wants you to do and thats true love to your father. Im praying that God will continue to do great things in your life.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15029420519896831300 Grace

    You amaze me every time I read one of your posts. Praying for you.Thank you for sharing your heart.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/13915229863085576017 Janell

    Your words always stir my soul. Rather, Jesus in you stirs me. Your obedience in the hard is not only bringing glory to God but encouraging many others. Thank you and keep serving!!

  • Emily

    I found your blog tonight and have been reading it and crying the entire time. I am not a Christian but I have to tell you that YOU are walking the walk that so many Christians talk about but never step foot on. You are a beautiful person and thank you for what you do.

  • Anonymous

    I look forward to your posts. Thank you for your daring heart.

  • Anonymous

    I read the following this morning and wept …"Do not punish me, Lord, by taking my cross from me, but comfort me by submitting me to Thy will, and by making me to love the cross. Give me that by which Thou shalt be best served … and let me hold it for the greatest of all Thy mercies, that Thou shouldst glorify Thy name in me, according to Thy will.- A Captive's Prayer"There is no life but this one, Katie. If He spends you, He spends you for His glory. Calvary Road is a highway of holiness. I thank God that you do not walk it alone. His heart waits for you to recline against it. He carries you. Laure

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/07806866143909507934 Tanya Robinson

    Oh, Katie. What a blessing you are to me. I sure hope I get to meet you this side of heaven.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/15417517331142051326 Butterfly Kisses

    Just wanted to say HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY! You are a wonderful mom to your 13 girls and also to the world around you! Blessings–dianne ;)

  • Anonymous

    Happy Mother's Day.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/09478663621596738933 Zac Marcengill

    Katie, I truly find joy while reading your blogs. I work at an orphanage in Haiti and with the kids that just won't mind and the endless "to-do" list it's easy for me focus to much on the "work" and forget about the joy of serving. Thanks for what you do and who you are! From reading your words I know you don't like this sort of thing but know that you're an inspiration. My prayers are with you and your family…

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/14859869276245320770 amy

    Katie, I have been following your blog as well as Mandie's. I am amazed by your willingness to give without question. I am a nurse and will be traveling to PMI in March. I would be honored to meet y ou and your girls.Amy

  • http://www.gracenutsblog.com Brooke

    Praying for you and your girls here and especially for your new baby Eden as I take care of my own little Eden who is now 10 months old.

  • http://nanamorroco.tumblr.com Ariana

    It's funny you write about this. My bible study leader follows you and loves your blog even though she doesn't know you. It's beautiful though how we are all connected through Christ so it's as if and we are, under one heartbeat, breathing His one breath in order to bring Him glory. I am to go to Morocco soon on my first mission with my friend for a month. It is just us two, this is how the Lord wanted it. But I had to trust God. Above all right now I'm learning to submit and obey Him. I am 21 and I have lived my whole life my way for the most part. In this coming of obedience I am being challenged more then ever by this trip because I don't know what He will bring. Fear and joy all at once. It's good to read this and know I'm not alone. You, who are more seasoned than I to the suffering of a world in need and I being exposed for the first time, yet we both ask and wonder the same things. Jesus's feet are good, I think I'll stay there as well. God bless you sister!

  • http://dailyscoreboardpost.blogspot.com/2011/05/novak-djokovic-wins-over-rafael-nadal-4.html sports apparel

    The purpose of life is not to be happy – but to matter, to be productive, to be useful, to have it make some difference that you have lived at all.-It's you KATIEYou are such a wonderful inspiration!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05887341902503234844 Betsy

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05887341902503234844 Betsy

    Thank you for this most beautiful post. Your 100% gift of your life to God is beautiful and bittersweet. I read it at the beginning of the month and once again you've been on my mind and in my prayers. It wasn't until today when I read the following article that I was again struck at the profound work the Lord is doing through you. Your work isn't just in Uganda. It is here in the US too where I get to read your post and be inspired once again to give 100% of myself to the Lord – to write him a blank check – and let Him use my life to heal a broken world the way He wants it done (not my way). Thank you for the real time witness! http://www.integratedcatholiclife.org/2011/01/kreeft-the-winning-strategy/

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/12675621253528460535 amy

    as my grandmother taught me…love isn't love until you give it away…praying for renewal and joy as you get to be loved on by suzanne and gwen this week.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/08957850489756230140 MarciJaye

    THank you for this word. I always feel sorry for myself or angry, or frustrated when they leave…all cleaned up and smiling, to go for the "easy" part with someone else. Are they even going to thank me? Did I really think this? Yes, I did. Thank you for this word Katie, thank you for the work.

  • Anonymous

    If a broken life is all He needs to do His will. If He can use a broken heart like mine, He may. And these hands are His not mine. And to love like He loves, this is heaven. It is so raw, and dirty, terrifying and delightful. I find His love so irrisitible and as I recieve it, it pours over my overflowing heart, through the brokennes into into the lives of the ones He loves…The one in frunt of me. He loves that one; for He loves The WORLD.Tears, through the whole thing my dear sister Katie. You are living IN Him. His Joy is your strength. I love you. Rachel

  • Chris

    If Jesus hadn't come in the flesh, then there would be no hope for mankind. It is the fact that you have lived for God in your weakness that let's all of us know that we don't have to be superman to follow God.