Jesus is faithful.
It is crazy that it has already been a couple weeks since I was in Uganda, Africa. I remember the faces, smiles, and laughter like it was yesterday. I miss it. I miss the kids. I miss my team. I miss the country.
I have started the journey of processing the trip. What was my favorite moment? What did I learn? What do I miss the most? When people ask me these questions, I struggle to answer because the experience was too magnificent for just a few words. Yet, I will try my best.
So begins my attempt to write of this experience.
Uganda, culturally, is a very quiet and reserved county. The kids did not share much about their lives or struggles. This made it difficult to connect with the Rafiki residents initially. However, on the second Sunday we were there, walls were broken and the Lord’s presence was felt. James had the idea of doing a bonfire and s’mores with the kids. What an awesome idea, how could we not do it. Once the sun had set and the kids gathered, James opened the floor for the kids and our team to share what they had learned in the first two weeks of the trip. This was the first time I saw the kids publically open up and speak about struggles and their personal faith. Following this we prayed with the kids, some kids asked us MOAMs to pray with them about specific struggles and goals.
We had finally broken down the walls. This set the tone for the final week. The Rafiki students were much more open about their personal lives. Four Rafiki girls even accepted Christ as their personal Lord and Savior! PRAISE JESUS! What an amazing experience for us to be there as these four young women made the best decision of their lives.
Jesus is Lord.
God’s presence was strongly felt. Many times I hear people say, “God showed up.” But God is always there and always present, right? So, what is the change? I showed up. Uganda allowed me to show up. I connected with God on a deeper level. I encountered Him in every aspect of my life. As I was eating, as I was walking, as I was playing basketball, I felt the presence of God. So, you have to travel half way around the world to show up? Not at all.
Travelling to Africa taught me more clearly, that I have to show up in my day-to-day life. Since I have returned, I have felt the Lord as I am eating, as I am walking, as I am managing basketball. The love and presence of Jesus transcends all language, culture, and geographic barrier. It is true, at all times and in all places.
The truth that Jesus saves all people is a truth worth sharing. Africa taught me that no matter what vocational path I choose, telling people about the Gospel is worth it.
Jesus’ love is overwhelming.
I think about the trip every day. I wish I could have one more game of knockout. One more conversation. One more hug. One more sound of laughter. One more moment. I miss the kids.
It hurts to think about, yet when it hurts I remember two things. Firstly, that I am unimpressive, yet Jesus loves me infinitely more than I could ever love. He loves enough to become human and die the death I deserved. Secondly, I remember because of THAT love, I will see these kids again, if not in this life, in eternity. I cannot wait to sing praise in the presence of the King with the Rafiki students.
Jesus offers hope.
My pastor once said, “The Christian life is like waiting on the sun to rise.” I am surrounded in the darkness of my sin and the sin of those around me. Yet, if I look to the horizon I can catch a glimpse of a sun ray. Sun rays are glorious, magnificent.
Sun rays remind me of what is truly important. They remind me of the purpose for my life.
They also offer a taste of heaven, an appetizer for a life that is too come. It is too good to explain and too glorious to comprehend. The only way to start to understand it, is to experience the love of Jesus and the power of His presence.
I would describe my three weeks in Uganda as a ray of sun rising over the horizon.
Jesus is worthy.