Sorry its been so quite around here this past week. To be totally honest, I’m not sure what to write. I started this blog to keep family and friends informed of how my trip is going, what I’ve been doing, and things of that nature. The longer I’m here the more I have to process and I feel it’s a disservice to those reading to let you think that its all fun and games around here, but at the same time, I’m pretty sure you don’t want to read a whole bunch of heavy posts every week. So I’m not too sure of how this post is going to end-I’ve started it with no plan. Thanks for reading!
Today the sweet Ives family-also from Nashville (we’re taking over Uganda) invited us to go to Kampala with them for the day!! They spent the first 4 months of their time here partnering with a church and were going back for a visit. The church they attended there is very Ugandan and very African. The church we go to here in Jinja is a mix of Ugandans and missionaries, so it’s a little tamer…haha! It was such a great experience and I loved it! There were three different choirs all dressed in matching costumes, the music was loud and joyful, and the people were so hospitable. I will not lie though and tell you that I am thankful for our 1.5 hour service here in Jinja as opposed to their almost 4 hour service. I wish I would have taken pictures, but that felt disrespectful. Then we went to lunch and I had MEXICAN food-and for being in Uganda, it was really good!!!
This week has been an amazing week of preparing four kids for their new families to come!! We talked about getting to meet mommy and daddy and that they were coming soon. I got to be a part of one family’s introduction to their sweet Luke and it was amazing!! Luke was waiting for them with a worker here and as soon as he saw his mommy he ran to her with arms wide open J Because I was assigned the job of taking pictures, I couldn’t cry but it was so moving. We’re waiting for one more family and then tomorrow we’ll have a meeting with them about what to expect in court and other important things. Their court date is on Tuesday in Kampala. I’m very excited that I get to be a part of this process with these families and learn what families go through on this side of the adoption journey. Being able to see first-hand what it is like to live in an orphanage setting, see how it is run, and what the children experience has been so valuable on a professional level. Personally and emotionally-it is thrilling, exhausting, overwhelming, challenging, tiring…and I’m sure I could come up with many other adjectives.
Well I guess speaking for emotionally how things are going-it’s been a trying week. As amazing as it has been to talk with the kids about their parents coming, it’s also heart breaking because that means that there are kids here who aren’t getting to meet their families, who don’t yet have a mom and dad, and who don’t have biological parents or relatives but at the same time aren’t legally free for adoption. Leaving them in limbo. Another little girl, who stole my heart from day one, is going home to her biological family on Friday. There is no such thing as Child Protective Services here. And basically children have no rights. So this little one came to Amani about a year and a half ago after having been subjected to the “treatment” of a witchdoctor, was malnourished, neglected, and abused. She’s terrified of strangers, new things, leaving the compound, and night. The social worker in me is seeing so many things that need to be addressed and causing me to make assumptions about her past solely based on her behavior. It is not pretty. In fact it is dark, cruel, unthinkable, but yet it is her reality. She’s going back. She’s going back on Friday, there’s nothing that can be done, and my heart is going to break into pieces. A song that has been repeating itself in my head says:
“Oh my God, He will not delay. My God will come through always”
Pray for a miracle on behalf of God’s little princess-she needs one.
Well this is getting long and I’m sure you’re looking for pictures at this point, but one more thing! Saturday, Sarah and I went to Amazima’s feeing program. It was wonderful J Each week they plan for 350 kids. Prior to eating they have a time of worship and a Bible story. These kids are JOYFUL! These children don’t have much in this world, maybe a change of clothes, their school uniform, and a few other things but their smiles and laughs are genuine and contagious. Makes me think of all the material things that I have that have no eternal purpose-that don’t bring true, lasting joy. That is only found in Jesus.