Life here continues to be busy enough that there is always something to be done. Sometimes it starts at 6.30 or so in the morning with a knock at the door. Most people are up here by that time, but this household isn't! There is usually someone needing something! Then, before 7.30 one of us needs to have opened the gate. The day has begun. Breakfast is usually a slow meal with both of us on the computers (such social beings) and a nice quiet environment. So often, so many different things happen in a day that one thinks, that would be great to write about but time.... I think in Australia people think - oh Africa there would be so much more time because everything is at a slower pace, only problem is that it also takes a lot longer! (In reverse in Africa everyone thinks that Australians have it all good and no one has real problems because they have money.)
What I do want to write about is God's goodness. We are so appreciative of His hand upon us, the way we are able to be used to bless people here and the timing of it. Last Monday morning Ron and I had to go to the Primary School the children attend. It was not a particularly pleasant job to tell the acting headmistress that we did not want our children from the village to be caned. She as Ron has written was in the process of chasing students from school. We were concerned and uncertain what to do, it didn't seem possible to simply pay all the fees. However, God had different ideas and we were greeted by two different offers of assistance. It was such a lovely thing to be able to go and enquire and then go and pay the remaining fees for the children for that school (about 60 of them). The thing is, it is not just the students and their families who are helped. The acting headmistress had been very concerned because she had been very worried about not being able to pay the teachers. She had been praying about it. God answers prayers and his timing is perfect. I wish I could always trust Him, fear is such an easy thing to take hold of.
Then, this past week, we had a child who had suddenly been very angry and treated his brother in a really bad way. This obviously needed to be dealt with and Ron and I were called to the scene. Ron went in first while I looked after some of the other children and then I joined him. It was an important time of praying for him and dealing with some 'stuff' with him. This of course took some time. As we finished praying the rain began to fall (thank you God for your signs and timing). Interestingly, I would normally have needed to have left by that time but I didn't because of exams. It is all in the timing.
We are trying to learn to be in step with His timing. This is not always easy, especially for people like us who like to get things done. Patience is not always in abundance! As we look back at events each week, we are able to see God's timing, just a pity we are not always alert to it at the time.
The past week has had some extra challenges in different ways. However, it is good to remember that there is so much great stuff. I find some of the challenges of school (outside of the classroom) hard to handle. I just want to run the place (nothing has changed!) and get frustrated by people not doing what I see as the job they should. So much of our time is spent learning why things are done the way they are. There are times when something else would seem like a great solution but there is a good reason for it not being that way. I think I have discovered that the time taken for exams and marking is just so that children who have not paid fees are sent away, and then have time to come back and pay and sit the exams! Yes, the tail is wagging the dog but how to stop that.
So, this is a bit of a different post than most of mine. Please continue (or start) to pray for us. There are many opportunities for us and we need to take on the ones meant for us, not the other ones. We want to speak into those peoples' lives that God has prepared. There is much darkness and much light. We want people to know that the light can change the darkness, it does not have to remain the way it has been. We are not wanting to change Uganda into Australia but God is above culture and wants people in whatever desperate situation to know His love. This is so much our prayer, to bring real hope - things can be different!
Update on my little girl, Mary - she is happy and healthy. In fact at the moment she is in the next room looking at the books. Everytime I am able to help in any small way, it is appreciated by not only "Thank You" but also "May God bless you"(which is not just a trite saying). Thank you for your prayers for her.
Just to encase this all in the theme of time, our evenings are sometimes spent by a short visit to YWAM but other times we can be greeted by many different requests. Last week after going out for dinner Ron had to go and jump a wall in order to allow a mother into her room, something had happened to the lock. The other thing that takes our time is helping the children. This is sometimes evening tutoring for older ones, helping others in the afternoon and we have started a bit of a bible study on a Friday evening. So at about 9.30 we finally say no more visits (please) and then after about an hour it is time for bed.