23 July, 2009


I found a friend on facebook the other day - we worked together at the ranch the year before my family left. He has started an orphanage in Africa, hoping to take in street kids and decrease trafficking in that area. It's incredible to me. Another friend of mine has a home for girls in the Northern Uganda who have escaped the LRA. She is also helping women who have been trafficked to Gulu from the Congo.

People told me I was brave for coming to Rwanda. It's brave to come to another country for four months alone, to live in a rural village, to do this. But to be honest, I don't feel brave. Brave is what my friends have done - seeing a need and filling it regardless of all the obstacles that stood in their way.

I wish I was brave enough to do what they're doing. But I'm not. I'm fearful and talk myself out of dreaming how God could use me. It would take too much, cost too much, I would never succeed. How would I get the money? How would I sustain it? Do we really need one more NGO? Isn't it already being done? The dream is dead before it has the chance to flourish.

I could write about responsible development and how people who have started homes for girls coming out of trafficking have done more harm than good. About how, while they have the best of intentions, they are not trained to deal with kids in trauma - and that is one area where "loving them" isn't enough. But that is partially a cop out. My friend is having tremendous success in Uganda. She is having an impact, the girls' lives are changing, and satan keeps trying to sneak in an undermine it. That is one good way of determining if you are succeeding in what you are doing: is satan trying to thwart you?

But I digress. This has been a very introspective morning already. I've been journaling for about 2 hours about everything that is going on. I keep coming back to the home in Togo and bravery. Before I left DC  I was talking to a friend about living the life God planned for you. It often doesn't look like what the world would have for you, and it often requires great risk and trust. It takes a lot to look at the crayons God gave you (to borrow an idea from Max Lucado) and actually use them. Often times if people are aware of their gifts, even vaguely, they are only using them 10%, if at all.

I want to do what He called me to - but I don't know what that is. I think that vision comes from being with Him, walking with Him, having a real relationship with Him. It's being asked to be used for His glory and then following through regardless of the pain and refining that comes.

It's not easy - but it is good.

There is a silent whisper here, there is more to come... Something is unfolding; something is coming.