Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Faces of Africa

Hi there! 
I have missed this blogging world and I'm excited to be back.  Life has been busy in a wonderful way but it is settling down just in time for the best month of the year.

This holiday season is particularly meaningful to me.  In fact I can't recall a Thanksgiving where I felt even half as much gratitude as this past one.  The feelings and effects of Africa are still unraveling for me.  I think it is almost too much to comprehend while there in the thick of things, but as memories of the days spent with the children play out in my mind, I feel differently about it than I did when there.  On my first night, I wrote in my journal that Africa is a sensory overload.  Each individual trait about it feels manageable but the combination of it is almost too much to take in.  The poverty, the children, the animals.  So many things that make your heart ache, yet a happiness and dependency on Jesus that I can't quite relate to, but desire for myself.  Situations that seem desperate and depressing everywhere you look, yet rejoicing and gratitude for what they have. I went to teach but I know I learned more from them than they did from me.

I left with a perspective and clarity that I didn't think was possible to have.  I know it will fade as time back home goes on, but I pray it doesn't leave me completely.  God's hand is in everything all the time, but with the clutter of "things" here in the states, it is easy to forget that.  Africa teaches us that when all things are looked at as a blessing and faith is the priority, God's hand is visible.  Without faith, I believe the enormity of their circumstances would overwhelm.  The problems they face each morning -- rape, abandonment, AIDS, and even something as simple as finding food and shelter -- are enough to make the strongest person want to hide in a corner and give up.  But instead they pray, give thanks, and remember this life is temporary, and they move forward with joy.  It is truly a testament to God's grace.  

I have so much more to share but I believe Africa needs to come in waves.  Too much at once is hard to understand which is why I believe God is showing it to me in phases.  For now, I will leave you with some pictures from the orphanage :)

1 comment:

John Rufus N said...

Looking forward for more of it. As I read, I was able to feel the reality. God is using you in a wonderful way! I too am willing to walk this extra mile to teach and reach to the Children of Africa. I'll reach out to you for more details on this... God Bless!

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