Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Rain Has Returned - Katie Herbst

This is Africa: One of my officemates recently named the lizard that lives in our office. “Patrick” is a quick little guy with an unusually long tail. I glanced out the door during a Good Friday church service and noticed a HUGE pig just cruising by; I’m not sure where his home was. On my way to work one morning a little kid ran up to me, eager to show me the head of a chicken that his family had just killed. He was most excited to show me how the eyelids opened as he opened the beak and then shut as he closed the mouth. One night while reading by candlelight I looked up to find a huge spider INSIDE my mosquito net about 12 inches from my face. For my housemate’s sake it’s a good thing that I go silent when I’m scared...


My job: I love the interactions I have been having with the kids here. If it’s playing chase with a group of little ones or discussing truth with the older ones, it is a privilege to be a part of their lives. Many of the little kids around New Hope have become my friends. At first a few of the staff children were a little unsure about me, but just the other day one of the ones who used to avoid greeting me, ran full speed at me and jumped in my arms. I love the little ones. My involvement with the older kids provides many great opportunities to discuss real issues. I have been able to see more into their lives, what they believe, what they think, what they don’t believe, what they feel. These discussions have been exciting because the students are being real. They have a lot of good questions and I really consider it an honor to be a part of their journey. If you’re praying, please pray for the Investment Year students as they begin to truly establish for themselves what they believe about God, his Word, and their lives. This is a crucial time for them. It has also been great to be a part of the process of deciding what’s next in life. Many of these students are making decisions now that will affect them for years. It’s fun to hear what they think and what they want, and to see how God is directing.

Easter: As I mentioned briefly above, my housemate and I walked about 3km to the nearest town to attend a Good Friday church service at an Anglican church (Church of Uganda). This was a great experience. We were assigned a personal translator for the parts that were not in English. It was so cool to be reflecting on the death and sacrifice of Jesus with Christians in the middle of Africa. They have a different color skin and they speak a different language but He’s the same God, it was the same sacrifice, and it is the same freedom given, for ALL who believe. I almost started crying because the little old lady next to me was so precious. She sat there, diligently reading out of her Luganda Bible with her cute reading glasses and singing from memory every song. On Easter Sunday it was equally amazing to be celebrating the resurrection of Jesus and the confidence and life that that gives. I had Easter lunch with Pacific family-smashed and steamed cooking bananas, rice, pieces of beef, and yams. After lunch I had a great time with a handful of kids and my camera. = ) It was so fun to spend my Easter lunch with them. I am becoming attached to those kids...

My heart: March provided two great opportunities for me to get away and go deep with God. I went to a week retreat with a few fellow staff members, where we focused on issues of the heart, the past, and what God has to say about it all. This time was significant for me; I’m learning more and more about what it means to be real, with myself, God, and others. Just last week I went away for the day with a small group of women to go through “The Steps to Freedom in Christ”. This was another great time of being real before God and realizing in a new way the freedom I have, and claiming that freedom for my life. I am currently in a Bible study based on the concepts that are laid out in the steps. It is extremely life-giving and a great time with the women involved. God has been so faithful to “work” on me, helping me see how much I need him, because without him I’m a mess. I think the more broken I become, the more he will use me. How often I think the opposite, that I need to have it “together” and then he will be able to use me.

Appreciation: I had a “profound” thought a few weeks ago that I want to share. Those of you who are supporting me in prayer and financially are not just supporting me, but you are standing in the gap and providing for the children here. The other day I was reflecting on how New Hope operates and realized that people like you pay and pray on behalf of children who cannot do so for themselves. So thank you, not just for supporting me, but for providing for children half way across the world.

with many thanks, katie = )

1 Comments:

At 10:32 AM, Blogger JMEC said...

SUERTE..........

 

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