Today was our second day in Uganda. Even though I have never been here before, it feels like coming home. I am completely in love with this country. Each place that we have gone, every person present is treated with the utmost respect. I had heard before I arrived that the people in Gulu were very kind and welcoming. Experiencing that kindness first hand is humbling. Though we have had little rest, my heart is full and I am ready to experience every moment. I do not want to miss a single opportunity.
This morning, we met with the leaders of Combini Good Samaritan, an organization based in Gulu that identifies those with HIV and ensures they have treatment and medication. During the meeting, the Director encouraged us by saying that even if you have nothing physically to give, to these people a smile is a big gift. Today, we passed out 100 beds, mosquito nets, blankets, and Bibles to HIV+ orphans. We were welcomed with a beautiful ceremony and dance by their caretakers. Many of the caretakers were elderly and the children were very young. We were able to love on the children and their caretakers before and after the bed distribution. We gave them something physical and tangible, and their smiles were the greatest gifts I have ever received.
While there was much joy and happiness, there were also very hard parts of the day. At Good Samaritan, we had the opportunity to meet and pray with a 17 year old girl who was being cared for by the staff. Five months ago, she was found in very bad condition and was brought to Good Samaritan to be nursed back to health. Even five months later, her body was very frail. We had the opportunity to pray for her and show her God’s love. Later, we were told that she passed away a few hours after we left. The loss of this precious girl was very hard on our team. We had prayed for her body to be healed. Little did we know she would later go to Heaven where she would receive the ultimate healing. We were blessed to meet her briefly. During our evening team meeting, while we were debriefing the day, I felt The Lord pressing on my heart Matthew 5:3 “blessed are the poor in spirit for they will receive the Kingdom of Heaven.”
Just before bed, I opened my Bible and it fell open to a verse that I felt was very appropriate for our trip: Isaiah 61:1-3, “The spirit of the Sovereign is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve, to bestow on them a crown of beauty, instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of despair.”
Please continue to cover our team in prayers. We are so thankful for your love and support.