Men and women who if we lived in the same neighborhood I’d have been having tea with them on a regular basis.
How could a year have gone by just like that?!
Moment after moment is replaying through my mind. I am particularly fond of the time Edith scolded me for smelling so bad and in exasperation instructed me in how to wash. (I’m sure she now thinks westerners don’t know how to wash). It is true that when I was there I stunk like a pig twenty-four-seven.
It didn’t matter how much I washed, I couldn’t get that smell from my body. Of course, washing in cold water for weeks on end wouldn’t have helped any, but most of all I am convinced it was my body ridding itself of our bad western diet through my pores, (next time around I’ll have to detox before I go!)
I’m missing the boda-boda rides. Henry was a fantastic driver and I came to trust him explicitly. I learned how to sit tight, lean in, relax, and leave the driving up to him.
When on the freeway with a semi-truck passing close enough for me to reach out and touch it, I became a master at sitting tight, leaning in, relaxing, and leaving the driving up to him.
Never flinching, not reacting, moving in sync, allowing my body to lean in tandem with his around the curves and through the round-abouts as if I’d done this every day of my life.
The day we went through the sugar-cane fields and he let loose on the speed was the best. And as much as I tried the next day, I couldn’t get him to go that fast again (the big boss was with us that time).
When Henry took me to meet his ‘moms’, without a seconds hesitation and the minute I got close enough each one threw themselves on me with arms wrapped tight around. Greetings that still warm my heart a year later.
And every week I think of Pastor Irene. With her passion and zest and fire, coupled with wisdom and prophetic care and gladness.
The day we were heading down to ‘Jordan’ and she gave me her pumps to wear and they fit perfectly was a tickled-pink kind of moment. When we reached this body of water in which many have been healed all I could think was, “Gosh I could use some healing.” But knowing I wasn’t dressed or prepared to clamber in the pond and dunk myself seven times I reasoned, “Maybe if I just swish my hand in the water a touch I’ll get a bit of healing.”
So that’s what I did. I bent down at the waters edge and swished my hand for a half minute. Walking back to the village Pastor Irene said to me, “Thanks for blessing Jordan.” To which I broke out in a laugh. For while I was hoping to draw blessing from Jordan from her perspective I was blessing it.
It was this kind of give and take, blessing and being blessed that was so rich in Uganda. Thankfully we are experiencing this same kind of blessing in our team at Capturing Courage International. Where initiative and offering of selves to something bigger than all of us has us rich in bounty of each other.
And even though I’m not ‘out there’ at the moment, it’s just the same in all the weekly correspondence with our colleagues in many places overseas. Just these last five days: with India, Pakistan, Mozambique, Kenya, and Uganda. Where the hearts of forward thinking, hard working, sacrificial lives given over leave me in awe.
Where we take turns following each others lead. Where phone calls are for the express purpose of praying for nations and praying for each other. Where emails are for the express purpose of preparing for further training, and of strategizing together. Where Facebook is for connections and visioning and simple heart care back and forth.
It is a way of doing life where we draw strength from each other, and where we are making commitments to common visions and goals. I’ve hardly words really. All I know is, this work doesn’t feel like work to me, it feels like worship.
This kingdom of God come to earth, this reign of God played out as we simply declare ourselves for each other. It is rich. Very rich indeed.