1 Corinthians 16:13-14 "Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love."

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Merry Christmas

We just wanted to take a moment and wish you all a very merry Christmas. We know how busy the holiday season can be and we pray that you would just take a moment and remember why Jesus came to Earth. We are so grateful that He made Himself a little lower than the angels and took on the form of a bond-servant. He did this so we can have sweet fellowship with the Father, Praise God!!

We hope that you enjoy this special time with friends and loved ones.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

God is in the little things

Monday I had the opportunity to meet with one of my students from the Bible College at his "house." I was heading downtown in the morning and he was eager to meet with me to show me his place. Now, this is a traditional Ugandan custom. For someone to invite you over, they are truly opening themselves up to you. As the average Ugandan has really nothing, no earthly possessions to call their own. They will literally give you a meal even if it means that they don't eat for the rest of the week. With this in mind, I told him that I would meet with him only if he would allow me to buy him breakfast. He humbly agreed. (Thankfully, breakfast here runs about one to two U.S. dollars.)

After breakfast, he was ready for me to come and see his place. He asked if I would like to take a taxi, I respectfully declined and said that walking was okay with me. I asked how far...he said "far." So I said, "about 20 minutes away?" He said "yes." 

45 minutes later we arrived at his place. Now, Ugandans are not known for keeping time so it was my fault for trying to put a time limit on his walking distance. But, I did know that "far" meant that we would be walking for some time...albeit not 45 minutes.  

Arriving at his place I got to meet his brother. They both lived in a one room, a 10 feet by 10 feet living space. No bathrooms, showers, closets, kitchen, etc. They had a queen size bed that they shared (completely normal here) and a bunch of Christian movies they had stored up when the church here went to all DVD. But, the best part was the worship music playing on the radio when we walked in. What a blessing!! 

Him and his brother proceeded to tell me how they were humbled by me leaving the U.S. to come to Africa. I was in shock. I live in a house, with bathrooms, kitchen, etc. I was the one who was humbled!! He was very proud to have me there for the morning and I was even prouder to see the work that the Lord is doing in his life. It is great that since we have the same Spirit, the same Lord, no matter where we come from, we have the most important thing in common...Jesus Christ. The whole time I was there, neither man complained once about what they did or didn't have. They were eager to show me where they did weekly outreaches in the community and to meet some of the people they encourage daily. 

This is just one way the Lord is using us here. We often have chances to meet, pray with and disciple people on their level, really showing the love of Jesus. We pray that the Lord would continue to use us here; to encourage the believers to stay strong and keep their eyes fixed upon Jesus. 

Grace and Peace, 


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Our Trip to the North

This past weekend, Suzanne and I had the opportunity to take a trip to Northern Uganda and visit some friends of ours. They live in Gulu. Gulu is about six hours North of where we live in Kampala. It was heavily affected by the long war that took place here and the people are now starting to show signs of recovery.

Our friends, Keith and Lisa, have lived up there since 2006 and have seen a lot of change. They have invited us up there several times, but it wasn't until now that we had the opportunity to go and visit. On Saturday night, we went out to the village to show the Jesus film. Now, let me tell you, this was a proper village. No electricity, no running water, mud huts to live in and almost nobody spoke English. It was a wonderful time! There were about 100 children that showed up for the film and about 250-300 adults that made the trip to see it. The nice thing is, we just hung a white sheet between two trees, started up a generator, plugged in the overhead projector and the movie was on an iPod. The people loved it and many gave their lives over to Christ that night and some the next morning.

The next day, Sunday, we had the opportunity to go to a village church. This was a great experience. The mud hut was about 30 feet long and about 15 feet wide. They had straw mats on the ground so people can sit and listen to the message. Keith had asked me if I wanted to give the message that morning and I was proud to oblige.

These people were hungry for the Word of God and needed encouragement. The teaching was on Jesus' Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5:1-16 encouraging these Christians how to live in this world but with their eyes on heaven. You see, the Muslims are starting to outnumber the Christians in the North. It is hard to go over 100 meters and not see a mosque. Though they are not persecuting the Christians, they are starting to overwhelm them with sheer numbers.

It was awesome to see the hand of God work in these fellow Christian's lives. Please pray for them to continue strong in the faith and to finish their race with joy.

Grace and Peace,


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Snakes and Snakes!!

So, on Thursday night we had a going away party for some dear friends of ours. They headed back to the U.S. for about six months and plan to return to Uganda to work in Fort Portal. The party was great, people and food alike.

We got home about 11:00 at night, dark out of course. Suzanne opened our first security gate that is about six feet from our front door. Upon opening it, she let out a scream, very loud and very intentional. I got the feeling that I didn't want to walk around the corner and see what she was seeing. But, I did... There was a black snake laying across the path to our front door. Black, three feet long and moving very, very slowly. So there I was, standing in shorts, flip-flops and hanging onto a tray of upside down pineapple cake. Not exactly the "striking" position one hopes to be in when encountering such a foe.

So I did what anyone else would do...I called my security guards over to take care of the problem. Now, Africans HATE snakes. Thankfully my guys knew how to get the job done. One picked up an ax handle and ran over and bashed it's head it. The other one stepped on the tale with his book so the snake would not move. After striking the head several times, they looked at me and asked me if I wanted to pick it up. I respectfully declined only to get the question "do you fear snakes?" I answered that the snakes in America were different...they just smiled and nodded at me. I don't think they bought it.

This was one of several snakes killed on our compound over the last several weeks, but this is the first that we have seen up close and personal. The scary thing is, another American who lives on our compound with us had just been in our house about five minutes before we got home. She just ran over to drop off some clothes for washing...in her bare feet!! We just praise God that nothing happened.

Serving Jesus,

Bob and Suzanne

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Getting used to the local customs

Being here in Uganda has really been a culture shock in a few ways. The driving is on the other side of the road, there are really no stop lights/signs and the round about is a fixture at every road intersection. When you add into the equation that Kampala was originally built for 250,000 people and now is home to over 3.5 million people, you can understand there are a few things that may be a bit...off.

The nice thing about the people here is that they are typically really nice and pleasant to be around. They are social towards you, when you first initiate the conversation. Also, Ugandans really value the concept of close friends. This is where it gets a bit strange, at least to me. In an attempt to be around the locals as much as possible, I have joined a local gym. It is about $14/month and I get my own "coach", or trainer. This place is covered with remnant carpet on the floor and magazine pictures of body builders taped all over the walls. It is four times longer than it is wide and has pit latrines for toilets. All that being said, there are a number of people who go there and the friendship and brotherhood is top notch. 

I have been at this gym for about one month now, I go daily around mid-day and I am there for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours at a time. I get to see the same people daily, talk with them, joke around and just hang out. Much to my surprise, one of the men (actually the owner) was talking with me one day when he grabbed my hand and began to hold it much like an American boyfriend and girlfriend would. Now, this is not the first time this has happened to me. This is a sign of much respect and adoration for each other, the kind of brotherhood that teammates would experience on the same football or baseball team. Needless to say, every time this happens...I freeze. It is not something that I am comfortable with at all. I think the reasons speak for themselves, but here it is such an honor to have someone hold your hand. The women do it, the men do it, and it shows they truly care one for another. 

For me, it will take some getting used to, if it is something that one can actually get used to. I still remember the first time it happened to me, a man grabbing my hand and swinging back and forth. It took several people explaining to me that he didn't find me attractive, but that he thought of our friendship as very special. 

Though I would not try this at home, it is something unique here. 

Grace and Peace, 


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Chuck Smith: A Memoir of Grace


This was probably one of the most inspiring books that I have read as Chuck opens himself and his faith in God for all to see. It takes you from the beginning of his life and how influential his parents and siblings were in every area of his upbringing. I persoanlly love how Chuck opens up to the reader and allows us to see the personal internal struggles that he and Kay went through while starting his ministry. It is encouraging to know that Chuck Smith, as popular and loved as he is today, started off trying to find where the Lord wanted him to be. It didn't happen overnight as it took him almost two decades to come to the realization that God called him to a grace filled life; and to teach others the same things.

One theme that is repeated over and over again is "everything is preparation for something else." We may not know or understand what God is doing in our lives right now, but we must have the faith to know that He is in control and that He has the plans for us. It is that faith and hope that I found while reading these pages.

 Thank you Chuck.

Grace and Peace

Friday, April 2, 2010

Local Kids of Sudan

There is one thing that Africa has plenty of...kids!! Just under half of the population of Uganda and Sudan are children. With the life expectancy so low here, not even 50 years old, people just don't live as long as they do in America.

These are some of the local kids in Sudan that we had the opportunity to just get to know. Being one of the only white people in the area, when you step outside the gate you tend to get a lot of stares and looks...especially from curious kids.

Grace and Peace,

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Saturday, February 27, 2010

Great work team for Sudan

I just wanted to let everyone know that we all made it back from Sudan in great shape. The work crew was awesome and got done more than was anticipated. I wanted to once again give my personal thanks to all five of the men who took time out of their lives to come to Africa and serve the Lord.

These five men from Washington, Illinois and Florida have stored up for themselves treasures in heaven with the good works they have done. From painting to electrical to putting up ceilings and putting in windows, there was plenty of work to be done and no one hesitated to help out. We even had a professional mason who got to play with some cement and learn some new techniques.

Once again, thanks for the hard work and no complaining, Glory be to God.

Grace and Peace,


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Traveling to Sudan.

A lot of people have asked me where I am going to be while I am in Sudan. Here is a map of the area, it truly is in the middle of nowhere.

My trip has changed a couple of times, but now I leave on Tuesday the 16th and will return two weeks later. We are putting in windows, doing some painting and some other construction jobs. Please pray for the work that is going on there, to be safe and fruitful in all that we do.

View Larger Map

Grace and Peace,


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Brother Andrew - God Smuggler

This book really spoke to me about having faith in what you are doing and giving God the chance to work in your life. Brother Andrew never went ahead of what God was doing and he was always provided for. This is an inspiration to all Christians to follow God and the calling that He has put on your life.

Also, what I got from this book is the difference between a calling and choosing to do something because it needs to be done. All around the world there are things and projects that need to be done, and most of us are capable of doing a lot; but that may not be where God has called you to be. You see, Jesus called the apostles to Himself, not everyone, just a select few. Though there were many disciples of Christ, not all were apostles. Even within the select 12, there were some who were even closer to Jesus; chosen for an even more specific work. They were not just simply filling a need, but following the call from their Lord.

If we are to fully serve Jesus, we need to follow His calling; and be satisfied with what He has given us to do. All around the world they need Bible teachers, carpenters, administrators, Bible College teachers, etc. but that doesn't mean that we go because of the need, we go because we are called. Much like brother Andrew, he saw the need, prayed, and that was his calling, to get the Bibles under the communist rule.

I hope that you are as blessed as I was after reading this book. Please share how God has impacted you from this book, or any other book you may be reading.

Grace and Peace from Uganda,


Saturday, January 30, 2010

From the coffee shop

Today we are at a local coffee shop. I must say that Uganda has the best coffee I have ever tasted, cheap too. They have WiFi here and it is pretty fast, almost up to cable type speeds.

Yesterday I got to do my first teaching, it was a 30 minute devotion. The audience was mixed with Africans and Americans. The Africans were Sudanese men, 6 of them, 5 who are in the South Sudanese Army. All have been in the army 20 + years and only one is over 40 years old. You see, they all joined the army before they were 15 years old, one joined when he was 9 years old. As I sat around the room, these were the most kind and gentle men that I have encountered while here in Africa.

All these men have been in over 10 years of war and all have fought in many, many battles themselves. Most of their brothers, sisters, mothers and fathers have all died due to the war. The thing that amazed me the most though was their love for Jesus. They had this unconditional love, a love that you read about Christ having for us. They didn't love Christ because they had nice cars (for none of them had a car), because they had nice clothes (they had to buy new clothes when they got to Kampala) or because they are rich (most make yearly what we make in a month). No, for them the love was only predicated on the fact that Jesus loved them first, that's it.

The text that I taught from was in Philippians 3, speaking of our citizenship in heaven and our identity in Christ. These men don't have much, but they know their scripture well. I couldn't help but wonder how much better off we (Americans in general) would be if we didn't think that every bad thing that happened to us was God turning His back on us or that when we really, really needed something or things went bad we prayed. These men said nothing without mentioning Jesus, and one carries a literal cross with him wherever he goes. I was simply awestruck at the faith, compassion and dedication I saw yesterday. They really have the "God is good all the time" attitude and when they need something, they know that God will always provide.

For me, I pray that the Lord would continue to show me people with this unbelievable faith, unwavering faith. It truly is a blessing to be around people like this. I will be posting some of the chaplain profiles over the upcoming months. I would like to introduce you to some of the men who are changing my life.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Here in Africa

We have now been here for two weeks and feeling right at home. It is such a blessing to be serving the Lord right where He calls you to be. Though it has been unbelievably hot and humid, we are getting along just fine.

The best part of running the guest house is all of the other missionaries we get to meet. We have already had the opportunity to get to know people from Northern Uganda and Southern Sudan. They had to stay at the house to do some business here in Kampala.

Overall, we are doing really well and already making some new friends and renewing our old friendships that we had started when we were here 18 months ago. The people here are great and a real blessing to work with.

Please continue to pray for us, that we will continue to be a blessing to the ministry here and that we will continue to walk in the grace of Jesus. As we are here, we are hoping to get more and more involved  in the Calvary Chapel in Kampala, pray the Lord would give us wisdom in what to do.