Tuesday, June 30, 2009

A Good Laugh

Tonight Vernon and I were talking about dancing and I was trying to explain to him the difference between square dancing and country dancing. Trying to get him to understand I said, "you know like CMT." This was followed by a blank stare from Vernon. I knew I need to clarify "country music television," I said. At this Vernon began to laugh and says, "I have never heard of that, so is that kinda like BET." This remark was followed by a blank stare from me, I had no idea what BET was. He laughed harder as he clarified, "black entertainment television."

We both laughed hard...we grew up in different worlds! haha!

Monday, June 29, 2009


I am still alive. I promise.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Titus' Birthday Party In Pictures
Titus and two of his best friends, Ben and Toby, all turn five around the same time so the families decided to come together and have one BIG party...and it was SOO fun! Each boy had there own table decor of choice (titus' was transformers of course!) We rented a blow up water slide and brought the rest of the water games from home. It was a great morning!

Titus and Toby with the Optimus Prime masks.
Ella, not to be left out, looked so cute in hers!
Justus slept in our friends van with the doors open almost the entire party!


Saturday, June 13, 2009

So Far So Good

Thanks to all who have been praying for Vernon. He made it safely to Sudan. He said that the pain was so controlled that he actually slept on the flight! That hasn't happened in a LONG time...years. He has only had one period of severe pain and that was when he didn't take one round of his medicine. So, even though we are unsure of the source of the pain still, at least he is functional! (and the fact that the meds are working is a good indicator that it is nervous system related) He went straight away to the orphanange and the children were VERY concerned for him. They had heard from The Village team that he was sick. They told him they were praying for God to heal him. Amen! Those children never cease to amaze us. Mark, Vernon and Bishop headed back to Uganda today to pic up Stan. Together they went to the retreat center where they will be having the meetings. On the way they got to go to Murchison Falls !! What a dream! About an hour ago, my cell phone rang and it said the call was from Vernon. Naturally I got really nervous because he NEVER calls me from his cell it is always from the computer or from a satellite phone...because it cost so much. I answered and I hear he say, "Can you hear this? Its just AMAZING. You have to hear this" he held the phone out so I could hear the roar of the water fall. WOW. That moment was worth the cost for sure. It was so loud and powerful sounding even through the cell phone from across the globe, I can not even imagine! They we so close so they hiked to the top! Sooo Awesome!

On a different note, camp was so GREAT! The students and the adults really connected and there was an abundance of honesty. Truth was spoken and lives were changed. I love seeing God move in the hearts of high school students! The youth pastors of this camp arranged for some adults and jr.high students to come and stay with all the leaders kids. They kept the kids all day, gave them naps, fed them, took them to the rec times, let them go swimming, and the parents/leaders were free to minister to the students and stop in anytime to see their kiddos. It was the BEST set up. So note to all Youth Pastor's- OFFER THIS. It added such a cool dynamic to the camp. The students loved the kiddos being there and the adults were freed up to be with the students. Titus had a blast!

Yesterday and Today

I got home late Thursday night, put the laundry in the wash, got the boys to bed, did a little work around the house and on the computer and went to bed. I got up Friday morning and took Titus to the doc. (he was acting strep throatish and his eye was pretty red and swollen). I just wanted to get him checked before we got on a plane and spread everything to all his cousins. No strep, but he got some medicine for his eye. We then headed to the at&t store...can i just say I despise cell phones. I was one of the last people to get one and have regretted it ever since. I always get the cheap one so I am forever in the store getting a new one because mine broke...annoying. Anyway, we spent a long time in there, they got to see a full on 4 year old meltdown, you know the ones you think are over after three...and we left empty handed because I WILL NOT spend that much money on something so small. Luckily, Allison and Justin had an extra phone I can barrow until I am eligible for an "upgrade." We met Allison at her house at 3:30 got the phone, switched out the sim card and headed to the airport. We got there and by the time we parked, checked in with both boys and got through the security with a stroller, laptop and two boys, it was time for our flights boarding to begin...so we RAN through the airport! Poor Titus, he was such a trooper. We get up to the gate in time for them to announce it was going to be delayed by an hour. Dang. So we go to find a seat, get out the DVD player and snacks...only to find...we forgot the DVD player in the car. Titus started to cry. NO plane and now NO movies! So I called Robin who just dropped us off, she turned around, re-parked and brought the DVD player to security, security ran it through and we were off again to the gate. We finally boarded and the boys were AWESOME on the flight. Justus slept and Titus watched some of cars and drew a card for my mom. We finally arrived in MO around 9 and got to my house in King City around 10:30 after stopping at walmart for milk for Justus.
Needless to say, we are glad to be here! We will being going to my grandmas house tomorrow for a big party...my grandma throws the BEST parties!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

And We're Off

Vernon's Test came back clear...all of them. No signs of anything life-threatening. Amen! But still do not know what exactly is setting of the neuropathy pain. So Vernon boarded the plane this morning for his 21st trip. Thanks for the prayers. Please, if you will continue to pray for him.

As for me and the boys, we are at camp! I love camp! Stonegate Fellowship (our church in Midland) asked me to come and speak to the students each morning for the morning sessions. It has been SOOO fun. I have about 50 9th graders every morning and I am loving it! We are studying God's Word together and having a lot of fun! I just LOVE teaching the Word and as a mother of two small children, I don't get the opportunity very often, so you can imagine my enthusiasm.

I got to bring the boys with me. (its just outside of Austin) They are having the time of their lives! Some of the other leaders and the worship band brought their kiddos so there are lots of friends to play with. They are just exhausted by the end of the day. I can come and go as I need to, so if I want to go to rec with the students I can and if I want to go rock Justus or swim with Titus I can...its amazing! I was way nervous about it but the two ladies and four eighth grade girls who are watching them are awesome!

Anyway, if you think of us, my sessions are each morning at 10:30am. Pray the Word would take deep root in these students!!

Click here to follow us at camp we have one of the best Video guys out there!

Friday, June 05, 2009

A Little Update

Vernon is doing well. He is still have a great deal of pain. He has undergone a series of test and has been medically cleared to fly. He just will have a good deal of pain if he chooses to do so. He had a CT Scan today. We will get the results on Monday and if he is clear of anything major he will fly out with two other His Voice for Sudan board members Tuesday. He has been placed (temporarily) on some pain meds that allow him to function normally. The doctor said it seems to be non-life threatening and a waiting game as we send blood test off. With this he cleared Vernon (in as much as doctors are able) to go if he felt his pain was tolerable. So we are still evaluating this.

The team has made it in country and are doing great! They will be spending time at the orphanages the next couple days. The team will actually be leaving the day Vernon arrives, if he decides to go. His Voice for Sudan and EPC will be having a series of crucial meetings discussing the vision for the next few years...soo great!...this is why Vernon would like to be there if possible.

Thanks so much for praying!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Why 21 was so different.

Tuesday morning I dropped Vernon off at the airport for his 21st trip to Sudan. As many of you know a couple months back we found out that Vernon has Factor V Leiden Mutation which is a big term that means he is genetically predisposed to blood clotting. This is not a new thing, it is something you are born with, what is new about it is that we have the knowledge now that he has it. So ALL 20 other trips to Sudan he had the Factor V but ignorance is bliss I suppose. Long air plane rides are one of the major cause of blood clotting so add the two together and it is miraculous that he has yet to have any issues. I was afraid that at times this would have my heart wavering, so I called on a sweet group of friends to pray and help me take my thoughts captive and trust God. Turns out God had a different plan for this 21st trip....

About 5 years ago, Vernon picked up some unknown parasite that has essentially wrecked his immune system. Over time his immune system has focused on this unknown illness and his nervous system has taken over and worked its self to death. This has caused him GREAT pain over the years because his nerves are deteriorating from the ends of his feet up his legs. It is a syndrome called Sensory Neuropathy (SN). 5 years ago when this all began we went through about a years worth of tests sending his blood to Mayo, MDA and many other sources to rule out cancer or rare diseases because SN is a secondary issue, one cause only by an internal or external trauma of some sort. All the blood work came back clear and saying Vernon was healthy in everyway. The Foreign Disease MD said that he was clear of all major parasites etc. but he pain never stopped. Infact over the years it has gotten increasingly worse with each trip to Sudan.

A month ago we went to an acupuncture doctor who figured out the parasite Vernon was carrying. He did some treatments and is now testing negative for the parasite...Praise the Lord. But the damage it has done is so bad that his pain still continues.

Four days before Vernon was scheduled to leave this time, the pain in his legs got so intense he informed the team he was leading that he would have to be cleared by his doc before going. He went in and was checked and cleared to go...no signs of blood clots. (he can fly with the SN it just hurts, it is not life threatening, just extremely painful) He gave him some pain killers for the SN and sent him off to Sudan. The day before the trip the pain meds were still not working well. We decided to go to the Chiropractor to see if getting his lower back worked on would help...and this was the answer we were looking for! He worked on his lower back and the pain got so much less. So we packed him up and went to bed. Vernon woke in the night with severe leg pain again. He took more meds and decided to go on the trip. Feeling good about the blood clot issue not really playing in to the leg pain we thought he could get the pain under control with meds. He met the team and they were on there way.
In the air to Detroit (which is a stop he doesn't generally make he usually flys direct from Dallas to Amsterdam) the pain got so severe that even with the max dose of pain killers he was having sweating and seeing stars from the pain. His arms stared to numb and turn blue as well. He got of the plane in Detroit and called his doc. The doc said "PLEASE do not continue, get checked at the airport and get back to Ft. Worth ASAP." There was only one problem with this; the team he was leading was full of folks who have never been to Africa, let alone Sudan. Only one member had ever been to Africa and that was 13 years ago. So we had to figure out some logistics of getting them around in Uganda without Vernon and getting them into Sudan without Vernon. Vernon said the team rose up to the occasion. They showed great maturity and courage in Christ. They leaned immediately on God to protect them guide them and heal Vernon. They were amazing. Props to The Village Church for training and sending people who are rooted deep in Christ!
Vernon was cleared to get back on a plane to Dallas and arrived home around 10 that night....in extreme pain. He made it through the night with some pain meds and got to the doc in the am. He spent the day there getting ultrasounds taken to rule out blood clotting. No blood clots...which we were pretty sure that was the case, but with Factor V you have to rule it out. Now he is on some better meds and is waiting for CT Scan tomorrow. But ultimately he needs to get into a Neurologist and they are all booked until July. His new meds are the kind that build on themselves so the longer he takes them the better he will feel. If the CT Scan is clear and the meds really pic up he will probably return to Sudan in the next week or two...because again the SN is not life threatening, just painful and he cant be seen by a neurologist until July.

So would yall please join us in prayer for wisdom. Wisdom about traveling. Wisdom for the doctors. Wisdom for the team that is in Sudan without Vernon.

If anyone lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. 6But let him ask in faith, with no doubting...
James 1:5-6a

Thanks and Amen!