Monday, June 25, 2018

Uganda, June 2018: Dan's View

Wow - what an amazing start to the SCCC Uganda mission trip! After checking into the (somewhat rustic) hotel on Sunday evening, we settled down for dinner and a team meeting where Mark and Pastor Hummer gave us an overview of the schedule and potential changes.  Monday morning began with a hearty breakfast and an uplifting devotional from the Book of Matthew. As a side note, it has been very uplifting and encouraging to see so many people from the US, Europe, and Australia here in Uganda serving in a Christian missionary capacity.  We consider ourselves fortunate and blessed to be part of this effort.

The short ride to the Ray of Hope school (and orphanage) which is sponsored by Progressive Missions and Stafford Crossing was uneventful, but eye-opening.   The main and secondary roads are dotted with small, makeshift shanties that serve as evidence of the level of poverty that is pervasive throughout Uganda. But, our reception at this school and orphanage that serves about 250 children was rich indeed!  Rich in Spirit; rich in worship energy; and rich in God-honoring activities that blessed every one of us. It’s funny, sometimes its the very people who have the least in way of worldly possessions that are the ones most happy and connected to Jesus.

At the school we transformed one of the three small 12 X12 classrooms into a temporary eyeglass clinic, and interacted with about 60 locals.  We were able to dispense glasses to each one of them which will go a long way toward furthering God’s kingdom. Every single person that came through the clinic read the bible with us and discussed their understanding of Jesus. Then after lunch, Mark and Gene shared the gospel and entertaining stories that captivated the children and brought home the message of our visit.  We separated into smaller groups where the eight of us assisted the children in making bracelets that symbolically represented the gospel.  Shortly after that, we spend some very fun, joyful unscripted time with the children.  For example, I taught some of them how to juggle three bouncing balls (that represented God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit); Jackie made small wooden crosses surrounded by a eager mob of happy little shining faces; Deb entertained a large group of children with a bubble-blowing device; while Mark, Gene, Bill, and Casey played “football” (soccer) with the children in the alleyway.  It was difficult to leave, and the children surrounded us with constant love, adoration, and encouragement.  It was truly the mission team that came away from this experienced greatly blessed. God is doing amazing things in Uganda!

Those of you who are praying for us (or have prayed for us) are every bit a part of this effort as well and we heartily thank you!  Your prayers are being heard and we appreciate your support and encouragement.  As I close this blog entry, I am physically tired, yet emotionally charged and eager to see what God has in store tomorrow and the remaining days here in Uganda. Thank you again & God Bless!

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