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As promised, this final blog will be a compilation of thoughts from all seven team members. To God be the glory!

Ashley

Wow! We serve an amazing God. I am so thankful God called me to this mission and I said yes, even when I didn’t know why. To meet a group of people that you didn’t know, have them instantly love you and become part of your family is an incredible experience.

The Golden Heart team worked very hard to organize everything that has not only happened the last two weeks, but they work hard all the time. All of them were running on very little sleep but they all still had a beautiful smile on their face and served the Lord everyday. This team has shared a lot of things together: laughter, tears, joy, sadness, and heartbreak, and we got to watch the Holy Spirit moving through us.

God orchestrated an amazing team, and now we are family. The things we have seen and done together in the Kingdom of God will never be forgotten. We have shown Uganda the love of Christ, but in return we were the ones that felt the love. I will never forget the kids’ faces when we showed up to the schools. The cheering, singing, hugs, high fives, and handshakes will forever be in my mind. They literally have nothing, but they have so much joy.

Today, Golden Heart organized to have all the kids at the house. It was amazing getting to see their faces light up when we played music, games, and ran around to let them be kids. They have no idea how their lives are going to be forever changed all because of Jesus’ love. The first time I saw my little Faima, she wouldn’t even look up, but today she hugged me with a big smile on her face. My heart if overflowing as this trip comes to an end. It’s not that we say good-bye, but “see you later.” All the glory goes to God.

GeorgAnn

After a candlelight dinner at the Kazinga Channeview Resort (because there was no power!) with bats entertaining us overhead, we returned to our rooms. I woke up around 1am to use the bathroom facilities down the hall. I could not get my door unlocked. After about 5 minutes, I finally got door unlocked. I woke up at 5 am and got ready. We met for breakfast and devotions at 8 am.

Noah, our security and bodyguard, told his story about being kidnapped at age 8 and forced into the NRA rebel army. He was given his first gun at age 12. He, along with many other children, was placed at the front line, and they marched against Idi Amin’s army. Very somber documentary of Noah’s life. He started out as a Muslim and ended up surrendering his life to Christ.

Nuper

The mission is over, and we now begin the long trek home to get back to the Hottie. It was an amazing mission. GH (Golden Heart) and MU (Mission Uganda) work together as an amazing team.

Seven people left Des Moines 14 days ago, and most of us barely knew each other. Today, we are as close as family and have a bond few find in life. God gave me an amazing team. Every one of them carried out the mission far beyond my highest expectation. I would be so in awe how they would share the message of Jesus Christ in new ways. Most of all, I am so in awe of God and how he wove this team together and the God-things He played out in his wonderful way. We give God all the glory and are so thankful he chose us to help him love the people of Uganda.

Erv and Val

God is good all the time, and that is His nature. Once again, Nuper and Maggi had a very successful mission trip to Uganda. Today we packed our bags to get ready for our trip home. Dennis always says it’s only 30 minutes, but we all know it’s much longer than that! Ha ha! Then we had a party for all the kids who were sponsored through Golden Heart. We played musical chairs, took pictures, played ball, and did some face painting to bond a bit with them before leaving for the airport. We have had a great time. God has done amazing things!

Collin

Passion. I am amazed at the passion displayed by just about every Ugandan we came into contact with. Whether it was on the football pitch (where they had an incredible row about whether a player made a goal or not), tending to their studies in what we would view as impossible conditions, or singing and dancing for the Lord, our team witnessed a passion that most Americans have lost over time.

Every single Ugandan we met would smile and wave to us, and when the children thanked us for the porridge, math sets, and for visiting them, they would kneel to the ground as a gesture of thanks. Even children as young as 18 months would do this. We have a lot to learn from these amazing people, and I praise God that I got to be a part of it. The Lord is working in incredible ways in Uganda, and I am completely humbled that he used the team and myself to further His purpose as we welcomed the people of this country into His Kingdom.

Bryce

So, there you have it. Two weeks ago we began a God journey. As with most mission trips, God is in control. It is a bittersweet day as we give our goodbyes. It is sad to leave, but we are so happy that God chose each of us because of our unique gifts and strengths to accomplish His mission in Uganda. It has been a pleasure to keep all of you informed as we made our way through each day. I will end by repeating a Ugandan saying. “God is good, all the time. All the time, God is good and that’s His nature. Wow.”

Sabalongo