I remember being a little girl with french braids and overalls, running around the yard and woods fearless and free. I loved working with Daddy, I loved taking care of my little sister with my Mom, and I loved my Jessie from Toy Story costume. There was also something else I loved. I didn’t think much of it then, but as a little girl I loved Africa, or the idea of Africa I had dreamt up in my mind. The only thing I knew about the place was there was beautiful wildlife roaming free, just as I did in the green grass and forest of my home, and there were beautiful people with dark skin and dark eyes that I have always seemed to be drawn toward, and so I knew I wanted to go someday.
What I didn’t know then and what I reflect on now is how that dream became a reality and how my love of “Africa” now encompasses a love of people very dear to me, of places and experiences, of various cultures and traditions, of languages and accents, of smells and sights, of different foods and living conditions; but, greater than all of that is how my love of Africa has propelled me to a deeper and more intimate love of Jesus. In my pursuit of knowing and loving Him more, I’ve tasted and seen that He is so good and He continues to fashion my heart to beat more in rhythm with His. He’s entrusted me and chosen me for a task I know someone else could do better. It’s a position I am so underserving of but it’s a privilege that I will never get over. Just as Paul came to realize, I have also come to believe that my life is worth nothing to me unless I use it for the work assigned to me by Jesus. So I want to officially announce to you that:
The Lord has made it evident that I am to move to Uganda and He has been preparing my heart for this moment since I was a little girl.
Yes, I have so many questions that are unanswered. Yes, it is scary to be honest. But the excitement and assurance I have belittle those fears and I do not want to give the Lord anything less than my yes. He has proven time and time again that my obedience to Him results in blessings that far outweigh any fulfillment this world promises to bring. Rather, the things of this world have grown strangely dim as I’ve turned my eyes to Jesus and the promise of life forever with Him. He hasn’t called me to comfortability and complacency, but rather radical living just as He demonstrated through His life here on Earth.
So, take a look at my new home.
It’s a church building where I’ll have a room and bathroom and access to a kitchen. I’ll be enclosed by a locked gate and fence at night, but during the day I hope it looks a lot like this picture. I want this place to be full of faces old and new, of love, play and laughter. I want to be auntie, friend, encourager, prayer warrior, and confidant in this home. I want worship to be the anthem in these four walls and burdens to cease as tears are cried from heartache but also shed from overwhelming joy. I want to learn here, I want to grow here, and I want to invest here, and it seems this will come true end of May.
I will be involved in coaching basketball, doing children’s and women’s ministry through Bible studies and activities, but my heart’s greatest aim during my time in Uganda is to be involved in bringing freedom to those in the sex trade through the hope of the Gospel and through being a part of a community providing restoration and healing to these priceless people. When I ignorantly believed this was a problem not being addressed much yet in this country, I was reminded gently by the Lord that He is working to bring His children home to Him all across the globe through efforts seen and unseen by those with a selfless yes to His invitation to come and follow Him. Through a divinely orchestrated encounter, I met a Ugandan lady and her husband who have a friend running this kind of ministry in Kampala, the capital city. I plan to work with her and learn from her and maybe one day see this type of program expand to more rural areas like Hoima.
There are many things I want to see happen during my time (not really sure yet what that time will be; 1-2 years maybe), but the reality is that I simply want to love and invest, rooted in the hope of Jesus. I have a story to tell of His grace so great that traded my sin for a cross. He looked at me in my deepest, darkest place and said I was worth it; and for that, I owe Him my all. He’s my refuge and comfort both now and forever. He’s the Good Shepherd guiding me, protecting me, and loving me so gently. With Him is home, and so in Hoima, I’ll be home.
For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come. Hebrews 13:14
I ask you to join me through encouragement, prayer, finances or however you feel led to help. I will be serving under the umbrella of Macedonian Call Ministries, so all donations are tax deductible. I am currently working on a budget for specific needs such as insurance coverage and ministry expenses. More information on that will be sent out soon. Please feel free to reach out to me with questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 678-340-6989.
My deepest thanks,