Thursday, May 06, 2010

A Ugandan Prespective

The following post is written by Malinda Hayes, an amazing 18 yr. old woman I had the privilege of traveling to Uganda with last fall. Malinda followed God's call to go live in the village that we'll be working in for a few months. I encourage you to read ahead. Malinda is an inspiration and adds tremendous insight to life there.

Malinda writes: As an eighteen year old I have had things thrust onto my lap that I simply felt I could not handle. I came to Uganda to love children, not to be an administrator. For a short time I began to fall into Satan’s trap of guilt and depression, carrying the weight of all this need on my shoulder. Through a period of prayer, I came to recognize that God has not called me to carry the guilt of not being able to feed the thousands and millions of people of this country. God knows of all these things, and I am not a humanitarian. I am an apostle, so all I can do is share about Jesus and his love, and follow the Holy Spirit’s leading on how to help. Also, I realized that I was spiritually starving! There are “churches” in this area, but I do not count them as bodies of Christ, as many of them use unbiblical principles in their services. I have been able to listen to some sermons online from my own church which has been extremely “nourishing.”

After living in my dear missionary friend’s apartment for three weeks, I had this overwhelming since that I was supposed to move back to the school. Now her apartment is absolutely beautiful, with a guard, gate, refrigerator, stove, oven, and even a HOT SHOWER. Yes those things are nice, and there is nothing at all wrong with having them. But I have seen so many missionaries who come to Uganda and shut themselves up in lavish places, and do not live with the people and learn their ways. How are we supposed to minister as missionaries if we come to their country and not build bridges with them? Why even bother? Also, most of what I would consider biblical churches is in the city in Kampala. Where are the missionaries who are willing to start churches out in the bush and villages? Those are the people that desperately need the Word! But many refuse to do this and so these native people suffer. After becoming Christians, they stay spiritual babies, and often mix their witchcraft with Christianity, as they do not have anyone to guide them through the Bible. It breaks my heart. As a white person, why do I have a right to not only spiritual food, but also proper medical care, sturdy houses, electricity, etc., yet these people as my brothers and sisters in Christ seem to have been forgotten and neglected by the Church? My question continues to stay the same… “WHERE IS EVERYBODY?!”

After feeling that God wanted me to move back to the school, I decided to do this. Although I lack privacy, I don’t have Western toilet, and many times my new family laughs at me when I attempt to speak in Lugandan, I know that God is using my awkwardness and discomfort to show these people that I care about them in the name of Jesus. Most of the children are on holiday this month, as school has let out, so it is only a few of us remaining here. Through this intimate time of being together, I am able to love and discipline the children, play with them, and read stories to them before they go to sleep. With the two older girls remaining, I get to stay up late talking with them about anything and everything, let them show me how to cook posho and beans over a charcoal fire, and laugh with them as we wash our clothes by hand together outside. I have been so blessed by this, and it continues to humble me on a daily basis. Although this simple way of living seems difficult, remember what the Bible says-We can do all things in Christ who strengthens us! I hope that somehow this newsletter speaks to someone out there, to give up “self” for Christ and receive a blessing much bigger than human comfort!

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