Uganda Trip Recap - Dan Young
Some of life’s most beautiful moments happen when things don’t go exactly as planned. Each day I encounter circumstances that force me to change my plans on the fly. Life is too short to worry and complain about these circumstances. Instead, I try to see God’s beauty in these moments which is much easier said than done. Most of the time it isn’t until afterwards that I see the beauty of the moment that took place.
For example, we planned on having 350 children for our first sports camp in Jinja only to find
out we’d only have 50 children upon arrival. However, once the camp started, kids from every corner of the streets came to join us, and the number was once again close to 350. At the time is was chaotic, stressful, and annoying. The kids didn’t always seem interested in what we were teaching, their English speaking was minimal, and the sun was beating down. When the day was all said and done, and I had time to reflect on it, the beauty was there even though I couldn’t see it at the time. That was probably the first time any of those children had experienced anything like that and something they will remember for a long time. Despite the lack of actual skills that we were able to teach the kids, we were able to change their lives in a different way, by showing them love.
Another roadblock (literally a roadblock) that we experienced happened when we were leaving from the first day of our sports camp in Gulu. Earlier that day, some of the kids had washed our bus and ended up creating a mud pile beneath it. Long story short, we didn’t leave right then. It probably took an hour or more to get the bus unstuck. There was just so much going on, so many people trying to help, and so many different ideas. For the first half of the process, the bus wouldn’t even budge, and it seemed like we were never getting out. The only appropriate response was to laugh away the worries and take advantage of each moment. When the wheels finally caught some traction, I just remember feeling the beauty and excitement of that moment.
The point of these two stories is that no matter what plans I make, God’s plans are better. If I’m not constantly on the lookout for these “unplanned” moments, I will miss out on God’s beauty in my life. I may have a plan for my life, but God’s plan will rule every time. What gives me the right to complain and stress about these wonderful moments that God carefully places in my life? This theme has persisted throughout my life, and this trip has opened my eyes to its true beauty. It is an experience that I will hold onto for the rest of my life.
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