Friday, May 31, 2013

It's Friday night and I am chilling.  I am watching three children tonight and have enjoyed it.  They are all tucked in under their mosquito nets getting all the sleep they need for a full day tomorrow.  It's the end of a week here and the music from the neighboring village is just now beginning to float through the air. A somehow steady rhythm coupled with different bugs competing to be heard.  Surprisingly, it's a calming combination.  The phone is laying beside me.  It's my first night on call.  Somehow exciting.  The phone has rung twice.  From the same person.  It was a really easy first call.  The man calling was calling concerning his wife.  She is seven months pregnant and is having intense abdominal pain.  As soon as he informed me of those two key points, I directed her to the hospital.  The second time I talked with him, he was telling me she was being admitted.  My prayer is that both she and her baby will be ok.  It's been a full week.  A week of saying goodbye to dear friends and a week of diving into full time  hours at the clinic.  It's been a week full of malaria, wounds, and opportunities to learn, learn, and learn some more.  There is so much learning to do.  So much.  Many of the kids from my family group are down with malaria. Today, Phionna came in with a fever, body aches, and just not feeling well.  I talked with her, assessed her, and the walked over to a bed so that she could rest.  A little while later, I brought her some paracetamol (tylenol), Lumartem (malaria treatment), and some water.  standing beside her, I put a watered down washcloth on her forehead.  I prayed for her and then assured her that I would check on her.  I checked on her a short while later.  I saw two little tear drops just hanging below her right eye.  She didn't want me to know she was crying.  I asked and then drew her near.  I just hugged her for a few extra seconds.   Thankful to be able to stand with Phionna.  And when the time is right.... to be able to walk forward with her as she journeys on in life.  She is a beautiful girl with a heart hungry to know love.  Excited to be able to love her and journey with her as she comes to know the love of our God more and more.  
Linda, me, and Phionna

Sunday, May 26, 2013

I tried multiple time to upload a video yesterday... a slide show of sorts to share with you in pictures, words, and song the theme of my life over the last five months.  Despite strong internet connection, it failed to upload  Sorry! I will try again tonight.  It's Sunday morning and I am laying on a mat underneath a big tree.  There is such a mixture of sounds around me (cars, owls, birds, etc.) and I am just resting.  In a few short hours, I will hop the back of a motorbike and zoom over to a pool.  So looking forward to getting some rays, listening to some music, and thinking through the last 5 months.  I came out to Entebbe on Thursday evening and am returning back to New Hope tomorrow.  On Thursday, I graduated from the training that I started back in January.  It's the ending of one season here at New Hope and the beginning of another.  A chapter that I am looking forward to starting.  My time in the institute was stretching and good.  We were a class of twenty-two.  We came as strangers and we left as dear, dear friends.  We learned together, we cried together, and we laughed together.  We even said "Holla, Holla" together.... thanks to yours truly.  I just wanted to give them a little of my wanna be Chicago soul culture! ( c : Thank you for supporting me these last five months. The things that I have learned have been and will be used by God daily as I interact with those around me (more later on that!).  One of the highlights for me these past five months has been knowing Anna.  Anna is a young woman from the Congo.  It has been so neat watching God work in heart in amazing ways.  We both shared a love for God and for Coca Cola.  Nearly every week, we would sit together and she would just share her heart.  What she was learning, what she was thinking, etc.  She is a woman that will undoubtably be used by God in HUGE ways.  We spent some time on Friday before she left to pray together. She closed her eyes nervous and unsure and opened them up a short while later empowered, encouraged, and acutely aware that she was not alone.
   "But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel; Fear not for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name,you are mine.  When you pass through the waters, I will be with you' and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire, you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.  For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior." Isaiah 43:1-2
From Left:Betsy, Betty,.Anna, me
Anna Friend, you are loved and I so look forward to the day that we will meet again.  For now, little sista cling to Jesus and know that you are NOT alone.  

None of us are alone.  And that's part of the amazing gift of being able to be here and share with those around me.  Adults and children, those from the west and from Uganda... that none of us are alone.  So thankful for that!