March 27, 2007
Jinja, Uganda

Dear friends and family,

Yesterday marked our halfway point here in Africa…it’s all downhill from here! ;-)  This past week went by so quickly.  I feel like I just wrote an update yesterday!

I’ve been so blessed by the friends I’ve made here; those volunteering at the cottage and local missionaries.  I was able to go with a couple of them last week to a school here in Jinja.  We walked into the yard and sat down on the grass to wait for the kids.  After a few minutes a small group came out, followed by more…and more…and more!  The group that surrounded us on the lawn continued to grow by the minute!  One of the missionaries took the 3rd and 4th graders to the other side of the school and proceeded to teach a bible lesson.  I tried to help corral the 5th and 6th graders and encourage them to sit still and listen to the teaching.  They were quite wound up so I felt pretty useless.  

When I pulled out a camera to take pictures they all crowded around, begging to be in the picture.  When one of the little girls saw herself on the digital screen, she collapsed on the ground in laughter!  I love the way these kids giggle at anything, it’s so cute! 

I so badly want to reach these kids.  I want them to see me as more than “the Mzungo who is only here for her token mission's trip.”  They have white people coming and going all of the time, yet I want them to know that I care about each and every one.  It breaks my heart to look into the faces of some of these young children and see the look of sadness and loss.  A look hardened by difficulties and experiences that no one so young should endure.  Anyway, I am hoping to go back again this week. 

I have been thinking a lot about life and the tendencies and patterns we all fall into.  I think it’s important to realize and understand traps so that we don’t fall by ignorance.  So often, people come away from different experiences with strong convictions and heady emotions that quickly fade as they move on to the next phase.  I am aware that time has a way of dimming or causing us to forget what once seemed so important.  I want to make sure I realize what to cling to and what’s okay to let fade, if that makes any sense.  I think it kind of goes along with what I was saying in an earlier letter about taking advantage of every moment.  We must take each experience, learn the lesson, and then let fall into place that building block on the wall of life.  Growth only occurs by moving ahead with each experience and building on what we’ve already learned.    I am so intrigued by life and it’s intricacies.  Nothing is ever as it seems. 

All of these experiences have brought me to a place where I don’t really care what happens next because I know that God is in control and I don’t ever have to worry about tomorrow...whether that means life in America or life here in Africa.  If I am not fully submitted and willing to be used in any way, my life is not worth anything! 

Thank you for this opportunity to share my thoughts with you.

In His hands,


 


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