Sunday, March 21, 2010


Im finally getting accustomed to life here in Uganda. Between frequent blackouts, learning to wash clothes by hand, and the most rain I have ever seen in my life, not much has taken me by surprise this week. I have even made progress in learning to drive over here....I backed the car out of the driveway!! One thing that I have begun to notice is how important the little things are over here. Some of my favorite nights so far have been walking home from church with Alfred in the dead of night. The nights here are unlike any I have ever experienced. There are no streetlights and it is difficult to see your hand outstretched in front of your face. It's tough to get used too, especially the walking part, being as there are moon craters everywhere in the dirt roads. I have to carry my "torch" with me at night just to keep from falling into one of these craters. But, it's in these same nights that you look up and see the most incredible display of stars one could imagine. You can see the stars in there purest form twinkling from above in what seems to be a black ocean filled with flashlights. On the clearest nights I can't help but think about Louie Giglio's video Indescribable and how he hit the nail on the head. It really makes you stop and think about how majestic our God really is.
This past Saturday Patrick, David, and I went to feed the kids at Mercy home. I got the pleasure of going over there earlier in the week to introduce myself, and let them know we would be coming to cook for them. My first trip there I met a 3 year old girl named Mercy. She immediately stole my heart and had this innocent little smile I knew I would never forget. For the rest of the week I couldn't wait for Saturday when I would get to see her again. I was excited about seeing the others too but this one in particular had already stolen the show for me. On our way out there we stopped at the local market and purchased 20 kilos of rice, 20 kilos of beans, and 4 cases of fruit juice. When the kids saw our van pull up to their place they immediately started shouting with excitement as they ran out to greet us. As I got out of the van Mercy was standing at the fence waiting for me to say hello. From that point on she did not leave my side. What I thought was going to be a day filled with running and playing soccer with the older kids turned out to be a day of relaxation as Mercy fell asleep on my shoulder. I tried my best to pay much attention to the others as well but could tell Mercy would get upset when she wasn't next to me. At one point I started to drift off a little myself only to wake up to a tingling sensation all over my head and arm where the other kids had covered me in grasshoppers!! It made them laugh so it was all in good fun!

Because Mercy is still very young she doesn't know English yet, so communicating was very difficult. As hard as I have been trying to learn Luganda there are only a handful of phrases I can actually say and comprehend. Mercy was able to teach me a new one on Saturday. Throughout the day amongst the laughing at me trying to speak her language and playing with the hair on my arms she would whisper in my ear "Enjala ennuma."  Sometimes it was in a quiet innocent voice, but other times it sounded more agitated and annoyed. I finally decided to ask Patrick what it meant and was heartbroken when he told me. He said she was telling me "Enjala ennuma" which means "I am hungry." It had been almost 2 days since Mercy had been able to eat. Last week she went 3. I know it seems like I keep harping on this subject, but it's only because it has now become personal. Feeding the kids at Mercy home is something that we have decided to do every Saturday from now on. Everyone who has been praying and giving to this mission now has a hand in feeding over 100 kids every Saturday who do not get to eat everyday. Know that what you are doing back in Alabama or wherever else you may be that you are making a difference.

As I get on facebook and see all the picture albums created over spring break I cannot help but think of the things I am missing out on. Saturday's in the fall will no longer be filled with tailgating with my friends and family in Tuscaloosa, but will be filled with the kids from the Mercy Home and in particular Mercy herself. It's sad to say but the hardest thing for me to give up by coming here was Alabama football. I guess in a way it was an idol to me that needed to be put on the back burner. As innocent as watching football really is, for many of us it dictates our entire weekends, even to the point of whether or not we go to church on Sunday.  In a way I purposely choose for me to be away this football season as to not have any outside distractions.  By giving this up God has given me the opportunity to be able to hang out with Mercy every Saturday and help feed all the kids at the Mercy Home.  The joy I felt hanging out with Mercy and the other kids far surpassed any football game I ever attended.  Its funny to see how things fall into place when we fully submit our lives to the Lord.

"If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth." Colossians 3:1-2


  1. Hey Buddy, Your blogs are incredible and I can see God's hand in your life and how apparent it is that you were sent for a specific reason. I am praying for you and know that God will provide as you feed those precious children at Mercy House and especially Mercy. Tears were flowing when I read what she was saying to you. Your life is now being fulfilled like you wanted with God's love and service to all of God's children. I love you, Mom

  2. Jay I am enjoying your blog and continue to pray for God to use you for His glory and to keep you healthy and safe.
    It will be quite a different birthday this year.

    Cindi Weeks