A Brighter Day
Today was a brighter day all around. Some expressed that they had trouble sleeping after the sights and experiences of yesterday. I understand. But even as we debriefed last evening, I had a different sense of things than other team members. My view is that yesterday, God brought us halfway around the world for such a time as this. We were there to bring hope, comfort, and peace to people who had just suffered life-changing trauma. I see that as an extraordinary honor. Despite the horror and sadness, I slept with the fulfillment of being used by God.
This morning, we had the happy delight of distributing clothing to sponsored children. It was a bit haphazard by American standards. We simply did the best we could to match children with clothing that fit. Often, the proportions of American clothing are simply off. Uganda children are typically thin around the waist, though they may have a distended stomach. And they have disproportionately large, thick, leathered feet. I found it humorous that some of the pants the boys were trying were “skinny jeans,” and, honestly, some of the kids could scarcely get their feet through the pants!
The distribution occurred at God’s Care Church. We did not have the van, only a Rav-4. They offered to make two trips, but I chose to walk and Leigh wanted to share that adventure. I set off at least relatively sure I knew how to get there. My confidence was unfounded. I took a left one road too early, and had almost ascended the hill on which the church sits before I knew we were on the wrong trail. In God’s kind providence, a young man came by who both spoke English and knew exactly where the church was. He pointed to a trail that started exactly where we happened to be standing, and as he said, it took us straight to our destination. Let’s see a GPS do that!
We ate lunch at the hotel. While there, a group of students came in. They were serving in an 8-week volunteer program through Duke University. They were just passing through, but I take this also as providential, for just a few minutes of exchange with them surely lightened our hearts. It was also nice to meet their guide, Bright, who was wearing a shirt for an African Children’s Choir and promised to email me info. God’s blessings to Jon, Sierra, Duncan, Charlie and Shelby.
Then it was off for an afternoon with the children. They put on a wonderful program for us, featuring some singing, some dance, some poetry and a brief play. We loved it! Then we got to interact with the children for awhile. I distributed most of the Shared Threads T-shirts that had been donated by Daniel Alexander. If you’re not familiar with the concept, please check out www.sharedthread.org. I took a tour of the boys’ home, then sat with five or six of them to just discuss. One in particular was extremely sharp. Chance Godfrey talked of the Scriptures (he knew a number of passages by memory), local Ugandan culture (he has very definite views of the King of Tooro’s policies) and life in America (as he imagines it). I was fascinated just to listen to him expound his views, which were well-conceived for someone on 12 or 14.
Then it was back to the hotel for supper. I’ll want to turn in early, for I’ve been asked to preach at one of the services tomorrow. I look forward to seeing the expressions on the faces of those who experience worship in Africa for the first time. I’ll have my camera ready.
Favorite Business Name of the Day: A company that sells mobile minutes named “Holla!”
Change of Mind for the Day: I thought I didn’t like mango until I ate one tonight. I remembered a little slimy and somewhat bland. Tonight’s mango was juicy and tart. Maybe it was papaya I don’t like?
Quote of the Day: “Caleb, you hardly ate any of your goat!”