Decker’s Diary

Dear Friends and Family,

on the Mission Field
June 2013

Things have not gone as well as I would have liked since I’ve been back. “He leads me beside the still waters” (Psalm 23:2b). Surely God got me on the plane in Uganda last February. Through post-blood-clot medical monitoring and a common anticoagulant, my blood thinned down to 2.28 clotting factor, an excellent volume for the flight, according to a medical mentor. And instead of being cramped in a regular aisle seat, I exchanged with someone in a “bulkhead” aisle seat, so I had plenty of needed leg room to keep myself moving and was able to get up several times and exercise my legs. Since that time, probably due to diet changes, the medical profession has worked for weeks to get my blood back to a stable thinness of 2.5 clotting factor. I am seeing a cardiologist, who has now encouraged me to try a new anticoagulant, called Xarelto. It’s quite expensive, but I take it once a day and it doesn’t have to be monitored by blood tests, so it’s perfect for when I go back to Uganda. Then there is the health of my hip and back, of which I had dealt with a lot of pain while I was in Uganda this last time, which caused more inactivity than I was used to, which probably caused the blood clot. I had gone to the doctor in Uganda for an x-ray; the technician looked at the film and told me the image was “common for my age”. Then he showed me what he diagnosed as arthritis on the ball of the hip joint. Stateside, the orthopedic surgeon that did my knee replacements in 2008, took x-rays of my hips and back and also told me arthritis is in my back. I had a relatively enjoyable flight home; however, the winter that I was trying to escape when I left for Uganda last November, met me at home with at least 18 inches on the ground and still falling. Consequently I didn’t go too far that first week and was able to rest well. “He restores my soul” (Psalm 23:3a). My desire is to go back to Uganda, but I struggle with the physical pain of just walking around the block. I had wanted to get back to Abba House before the House of Friends mission team arriving on July 10. I know it’s always good to have a “plan B.” On a normal status, I usually reach “plan E or F” before I actually get to the destination. But right now, I am stuck in “plan B.” Prayer mentors remind me, “If it’s God’s will, it’s God’s bill.” This was the first time in three years that the provision for my flight did not arrive as planned. So, “He MAKES me lie down in green pastures”, (Psalm 23:2a). I first need to be in better health. To help that along, I am in physical therapy three times a week and I swim at the local YMCA just about every morning. I miss the children. I was preparing to go back on June 19th and I am already in a deep-set preparation “mode”, getting suitcases lined up, etc. Now I David, Dorcus and Joan hope to get there in late July. The (cont. on back) building a fort out of chair cushions.

Barb Decker

Favorite Time & Trips
I am here in the States during one of my favorite times. It must come from all the years that I worked on dairy farms—the season of planting still tugs at some memories. The farms around here, in Missouri, have bigger equipment than I had ever driven, but it gives me such a thrill to see a tractor with “duals” (a second set of tires) attached to the rear wheels and pulling a 24 row corn planter. I did go on a road trip before I really buckled down to better health. That part of this mission is very important. A newsletter is worth the number of words it takes to write it—and then only if it is read. I try to do “road trips” to put a face on the newsletters. Sometimes that facial connection is worth a thousand more words. “He leads me on paths of righteousness, for His name’s sake,” (Psalm 23:3b) My trip took me on visits in St. Louis, Missouri, West Virginia, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Kentucky. Every time I get to New Jersey, I try to get to Rhode Island to visit my mother. However, I did not get there before she went Home to be with the Lord on May 7th. I went a few days later and met my siblings there. We had some closure by going through a lifetime of photos. As she wished, she was cremated and her ashes were buried this month in Manhattan, Kansas between her two favorite men, her husband and her father.

Challenges and Desires

I will support Barbara Decker’s work on the mission field with House of Friends in the following way. ___ Barbara Decker Mission Support (Monthly) $_________(One Time Gift) $________ ___ Abba House Project ( ) Multi-purpose dining/kitchen $___________ ( ) Missionary Quarters $_________ ___ Mission Trip Expenses to Uganda $_________ ___ Please send information on sponsorship of __child __worker.
All donations are tax deductible. Please write checks payable to: House of Friends and send to P O Box 228, Alma, MO 64001 Thank you for caring!

young man that was to travel with me will go on alone but will still be there when I arrive. “The Lord is my shepherd…” (Psalm 23:1a). As I prepared to go away from Abba House last February, all the kids sent “a hug” along with me. Even after 4 months, I cling onto these words, spoken from the hearts of the children. In other mission places I have been, letters to the U.S. usually consisted of, “send me an ipod” or other music apparatus. The Abba House kids’ letters put the emphasis where it should be. I am proud of them and would like to share some excerpts of the “Dear Aunt Barbara” hugs with you: Shinerah writes: “I am 7 years old and in Primary 3 (3rd grade). May God bless you; I greet you in Jesus’ name. May God give you a good journey and that you would be well with your family. I will pray for you every day to come back.” Racheal, in third grade, writes: “Thank you for sponsoring Abba House and caring for me. I will promise to pray for you daily and I will love you. When you go back to America, greet for me everyone and say that we love them and pray for them.” Jacky, 5th grade, writes: “I am going to miss you so much. As the Lord says, ‘those who care for the poor, they will become rich’. Thank you for caring for the orphans. If it wasn’t for you, I would not be here, but God wanted you here. God the Father will reward you as He promises. Thank you for being here for us.” Christina, in 9th grade, sends a request for all: “I am missing you so much. Are you missing Uganda and Abba children, too? Do you have hope to come back to Uganda? I am praying that the U.S.A. gets back to God, because He is the Creator of all things. Thank you for all you did in Abba House; we love you. Hebrews 11:1, ‘Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen. It gives us assurance about things we cannot see; it is all about faith,’ also read John 1:29 and 2Corinthians 6:1, 2.” Faridah, 10th grade, writes: “Thank you that you decided to be with us. As you go back to the U.S., I am praying that the Almighty God will protect you through your journey to and from the U.S. Thank

you for your love that you have showed unto us at Abba House. I have really liked your teaching during devotions and I am really going to miss it a lot. I really, really love you as much as I love my parents. I have put 1 Corinthians 13 into my head so as not to go apart from God.”

Thanks and Closing Thoughts
If you are praying for Abba House and these kids, I thank you. If you are supporting Abba House, one or more of the children, the projects or me, I thank you. If I had the opportunity to visit you on my road trip, I thank you for your hospitality and friendship, your love and gifts, and your evident love for the Lord. It’s frustrating, this waiting game—doctors, physical therapy, waiting for my hip to get better, and waiting for my back to stop hurting. Abba House, in Entebbe, Uganda is a strenuous place to be, both physically and culturally. I know it is important for me to be in better physical condition because of the work I will be doing. There is a reason why I am not packing my suitcases yet to go back to Uganda. It’s His timing I wait on, for “I shall lack nothing,” (Psalm 23:1b).    PRAYER REQUESTS Provision for the ticket, about $2000. Healing in my hip and lower back. There has been an ongoing war with bed bugs at Abba House. Please pray that the bed bugs BE GONE, in the name of Jesus! Whether I am there or not, please pray that the missionary quarters gets finished, complete with the “fluff” (toilet, sink, All is sprayed to kill the bed bugs and they have shower, windows, and refrigerator.) Perhaps it kept returning. It is time to be finished with them. will be done before I arrive so that all I have to do is enjoy it with all its modern conveniences. Wow, it will be wonderful!

If I will trust in the Lord with all my heart, and not rely on my understanding of things; and in all my ways, if I acknowledge Him, then He will direct my path. (Proverbs 3:5-6, personalized) It’s a promise.

Barbara Decker, Missionary House of Friends P O Box 228 Alma, MO 64001