Last Day in Uganda (Juliana West)
(written on the last day of the first two week team)
My 6:30am alarm went off but I didn’t need it. The roosters had already gone off and all the birds were waking up outside our window. Somehow, the roosters weren’t as annoying as my alarm clock, but even pleasing to lay and listen to. On a hill above Kampala, Agape Children’s Village was beginning to wake up. The air was fresh and cool and a young Ugandan boy was walking along the path outside, singing a praise song. Other children had already begun their chores and the sun was coming up. Day after day, from this village on a hill, is one gorgeous sunrise after another, never two the same.
Today, five of us would begin our journey home. There would be many goodbye hugs, photos taken, farewell notes and more goodbye hugs. Words can’t express how difficult it is to leave our precious friends after we have worked together, played together, loved each other, talked, heard their stories and realized how long it might be before we see them again, and knowing that after the excitement and activity of our time together, their lives will return to the day to day struggles that face them all year long. So much done yet so much more to do. But what will carry us through, and carry them through, is the love the Lord has lavished on us during our time together.
What every single one of our team has heard, over and over again from our friends at Agape, is “Thank you for loving us!” “Thank you for loving us!” “Thank you for loving us!” Powerful words. Humbling words, especially since most, if not all, of us feel that WE are the ones that have received so much love from them. Everything we’ve done, whether services rendered or gifts given, translates to them as having been loved. Both to the giver and the receiver, a holy and awesome privilege. And none of us will be the same. Whether together or apart, the love remains.
. . . At this point in my blog, we are back home in the U.S., but so much of me is still back in Uganda. I find myself wondering, “What are they doing right now? How are things going?” I remember the sights, sounds, smells and feel of Uganda, look through my photos, and relive in my mind many of the experiences we had there, knowing that only a relatively small number of people would be able to say, “Yes, I know exactly what you mean”, because they were there. So there’s the challenge for all of us who went, to go now to any who will listen, and relate the story of loving and being loved by our Ugandan friends. To bring as many as possible along side of us, to help us continue to love them, by providing scholarships for these precious children to get their education, to complete, outfit and staff the medical clinic in Kaihura, to meet the overwhelming medical needs of the community at large, and to reach out to them in whatever way that we can. So please, come help us. We would love to have you partner with us and know the joy yourselves, of embracing Uganda.