Saturday, February 25, 2012

we continue to wait in hope.

This is an excerpt from my journal on February 22:

(the names have been changed for privacy sake)

“the Lord is in control. This is a truth I cling tightly to tonight. My heart is heavy and full of uncertainty. Katie comes to me after bed-time bible story, tears running down her scared face. I know exactly why. She was expressing what I feel inside.  Her mother and two brothers were expected back yesterday, after a routine day-trip to a local hospital for blood work and ARV meds. 48 hours later we are still awaiting their arrival.

If only I could feel half of Katie’s emotions. What she feels in her heart; what is racing through her mind. Will my mom return? What’s keeping her? How long do I wait? Will I end up like every other orphaned girl around me? What if she never returns, what then? I know they run deep with concerned fright. After losing her father a year ago, her mom and brothers are all she has left.

All I could do is hold her tight and pray over her until she fell asleep, among many, yet so alone. I repeated over and over, “God is in control. God is in control. He is holding you.” As I tried to believe in my heart what I was telling her.”

And the night fell again.
And again.
And again tonight.

No return.

96 hours and 5 days later we continue to wait and wonder. Lord I ask you what my role in this part of the script is. What’s my next move? Do I go and try to track her down? I know Amy and her love for her children and desire to rise on her feet again. What is keeping her? Is she sick? Was there an emergency? My mind then wanders to the worst. Has she abandoned Katie? Why take the others and not Katie? How long do I wait to intervene on behalf of the vulnerable 8 year old daughter left behind?

Father you have forged this relationship and burdened my heart with love and compassion for this family. Guide me to discern what it is you have me do or not do. Above all else I ask you to envelope Katie with your peace un-explainable.

Those who are reading, please join me in prayer for Katie and Amy.

God, you say ALL things work together for your good and to bring you glory. So let your glory shine Lord.

Monday, February 20, 2012

just a day of my life here.

I love productive days; days when you have tangible proof of being productive! They don't happen much around here, Africa doesn't have the need for speedy anything!

Mosquito nets hung: CHECK

Girls room before nets

After nets! and the lovely ones who helped me hang them :)

Washing clothes: CHECK

is there a better place to hand wash and line dry?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


             My heart was literally jumping inside of my chest as I made my trek to the village last Tuesday. The corners of my mouth could have cracked from the smile across my face. Bumping and jostling down the looong red dirt road, further and further into the bush; knowing at the end of the road, I would be reunited with some passionate and beautiful people. When I arrived I was loudly and extravagantly welcomed, indeed my friends had remembered me! I wish I could have recorded it. Words can’t describe the joy that filled the air. I will forever remember that special memory.

When returning to Bulabakulu I tried not to have any expectations. Knowing it had been two years since I had lived here. But as with anything, I did… I expected some things to be the same: children to scream when they see my skin color because they are not familiar with white skin, enjoying the challenge in pumping 20 liters of water into my jerry-can and walking a half mile uphill to bathe, short days due to no electricity, choosing wherever I want my “bathroom” to be (that can be quite interesting at night in the bush!), and my friends both young and old to remember me.

I was excited to see improvements had been made! All the structures are now permanent! They also have running water and toilets! This is major people! To my surprise, I also found 8 other muzungus here. Instantly my frame of mind shifted…wait other people know about this place?? How? How long had they been here? What were they doing? I had been prepared to go through the culture shock all over again; no running water, the challenge of communication, skin color, etc. If you know me you know I enjoy adventure, so when I saw my challenges were no more I was somewhat let down. Excited for the advancements in the community, but wondering how life here would differ. I took a step back and realized God knew about ALL of these things and still chose to send me. He has a plan. I was forced to find comfort in that plan and I still am. The other white people here do not believe in the Jesus I follow.  It is easy to share your faith across the world, people either take it or leave it.  But I have a fear of being stero-typed when sharing Christ with people from my country. I am not ashamed of the one who saved my soul, but I am ashamed of the ones who distorted the picture of a Jesus lover.  So of course I am continually searching for the lesson and growth to be gained in this experience of both discipling my village family and trying not to distance myself from the others.    

Many of the projected ‘projects’ I had mentioned have been done or are no longer a need.  Yet another let down. But I believe this too, God knew. Maybe this is so I focus more on the root of why He sent me here. To disciple. Plain and simple. If nothing more gets done, it doesn’t really matter. 

My first night here I was the only white person. I knew it would be this way, but when the reality of night hit I was beyond frightened. Fear got the best of me and I couldn’t shake it. (remember that night fall here is pitch black everywhere no lights near or far) I prayed that God would provide comfort for me. At 10 pm I chose to walk to Immy’s (my African mom) house and seek refuge.  She was more than welcoming, taking me into her house and eager to know what was bothering me. She was understanding and had compassion…just like someone else I know.  We then walked to her friend’s home and Immy requested she stay the night with me in my room. 

Mind you…I had never met this lady until now and couldn’t make out the lines of her face. So now, this big Ugandan woman who hardly looked me in the eye has been woken from her slumber and asked to sleep with a muzungu. With me. In my room. So much for sleep tonight.

That night I drift in and out of sleep all night. Reading a book of promises my mom had made me and praying, for anything! And keeping an eye on this Ugandan roommate who I don’t know from joe. Desperately trying to make it to morning and get things figured out.

Oh, but I was once again mysteriously wooed by my heavenly Father. Around 4 am I read a verse about Christ being my provider of comfort (I have read verses like this all my life, but this time something clicked) I hardly finished the verse before my body totally relaxed and I fell deep asleep.

When I woke I greeted the woman who had stayed the night. I asked for her name and she replied “Favour”. My heart leaped when she said her name.
Favour and I- teaching me how to sew on the no electricity machine :)

             Truly, truly the lord has brought me to Uganda and given me favor among the people.

ISAIAH 42:6-7
                “I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness. I will take hold of your hand and   keep you. I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations, to open the eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.”

Sunday, February 5, 2012


The muzungu has arrived! (muzungu is "white person" in Luganda). My trip has been nothing short of awesome and I praise God for that! soak that last statement in, because i am sure it will become hard.

My journey started with my lovely family dropping me off at the airport.

even Nana came!
I flew to Philadelphia. I did not eat a Philly cheese steak.

Then to Brussels, Belgium. I bought bread from a man there and said "do you speak-a-my language?"
He just smiled.

My chocolate croissant
Then off to Rwanda!
I arrived in Uganda 27 hours and one day later.

I received ALL THREE of my bags upon arrival in the country, a miracle I'm telling you!  And nothing was stolen! craziness.  One of my best friends from my previous trip, Rochelle, picked me up from the airport.  She lives here indefinitely now with her husband Charles and baby to be! She is 6 months pregnant and is such a trooper!

she is opening a gift for baby Eludai :)
I will stay at Rochelle's for a couple more days before heading to the village in Wakiso. I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Jinja and I am adjusting much better than expected. It is so surreal being back! Thank you for your prayers.

check out these lyrics from a song i found on my ipod last night:
            "You are what I long for. When it's You and I my heart can sing. When it's You and I my  
              soul is free."  --Oceans Above "You and I"

When it's You and me, Lord. :)